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Staff Predictions: Nebraska vs. Minnesota

It's been a very long week for all of us. Time for more football to make things better... or worse.

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Husker Mike: Time to scrape ourselves off the floor. We can’t pretend last weekend didn’t happen.

Ranchbabe: Yes we can. Lalalalala. I can’t hear you….

Andy: I prefer to keep knee deep in the spirits that continue to direct me to the floor.  Bobby Layne, famous QB and even more famous drinker, once said that there are two kinds of people in this world - stayers & leavers. Now is no time to swear off the booze. Tell those fire & brimstone religious types to go ruin someone else’s fun as you knock back another shot of the blood of Christ. Cobby, mi compadre, what say you?


Brian: One thing that I think no matter what side of the fence you stand on with Bo and Nebraska, weeks like this seem like a year long. It’s good that we’re back on the Football wagon, and with 8 days left in the regular season for a lot of teams, time to cherish the games now as Bowl games creep up on us all.

Wisconsin (-9.5) at Iowa

Husker Mike: Is this an on week or an off week for the manic-depressive Hawkeyes? One week, they look like contenders; the next week, they look like Purdue last season. They were bad two weeks ago...then a bye last week. Eh, screw it.  It’s against Wisconsin.  Badgers 45, Squawkeyes 17

Ranchabe: It would be nice if Wisconsin beat Iowa by more than they beat us. But it probably won’t happen because Nebraska had a record-setting bad day against the Badgers. Iowa may not be as good as Nebraska, but they are not nearly as Jekyll-and-Hyde as the Huskers. . Melvin has to be a little bit tired and sore after last weekend, so he takes it easy on the Hawkeyes. Iowa looks good enough to make Husker fans worry even more. Badgers 42 Hawkeyes 28

Andy: This Is The B1G, baby. Therefore, Wisconsin is duty-bound to immediately prove they aren’t that good. Iowa 24 Wiscy 22

David: Well, hmmm...I’m guessing Melvin Gordon won’t be running for 4 bills, but I wouldn’t be shocked if he gets two. It’s gonna be a slug fest, but Iowa just isn’t good enough to hang with the Badgers. Bucky wins 17-14

Brian: I can’t see Iowa doing much against this offense. Then again, they are in Iowa City… nah, doesn’t matter. Badgers one step closer to Indy (or punched, depending on what happens earlier... )

Northwestern (-1.5) at Purdue

Husker Mike: Northwestern has shared in that manic-depressive formula, though not by alternating weeks. Purdue, meanwhile, has looked improved, but hasn’t won a game yet to prove anything.  Until now.  Boilers 34, Wildcats 31

Ranchbabe: I am going to play it safe and present two predictions. Because. Northwestern. No, I agree with Mike. Boilers 35 Wildcats 28

Andy: Drop a shot in your beer while you pretend to give a shit. Hazell 33 Fitz-bipolars 30

David: They’re playing this one, huh? Well, alright, let’s go with Northwestern 42, Purdue 41 on a missed extra point, because why not?

Brian: For the families, folks. For the families. Purdue by a field goal.

Southern Cal (+3.5) at UCLA

Husker Mike: Jim Mora is going to be treated like the Pac-12’s version of Bo Pelini before too long. He tempts UCLA fans...but keeps falling short.  UCLA appears to be in the driver’s seat in the Pac-12 south, which would seem to indicate it’s time to cough up a hairball at home.   Trojans 31, Bruins 27

Ranchbabe: I left Mora off my "fire someone" flow chart. I hope UCLA keeps him--one less team for the Huskers to fight for Scott Frost. I used to do some research into statistics and strengths/weaknesses before writing these predictions. That got me a 30-40% success rate. Now, I am simply going to guess. It should raise my average to 50/50. Trojans 40 UCLA 32

Andy: With no more Carroll, Neuheisel, Kiffin tool factor, this one’s become pretty bland. Maybe Haden will storm the field again. UCLA 44 USC 38

David: Ah, the battle of LA! UCLA’s been pretty underwhelming. They were supposed to be good, right? What happened to the Bruins? I think it’ll be an entertaining game, though not a particularly well played one. USC 35, UCLA 31.

Brian: Time for Sark to fart the bed, eh? 8 Clap for the win here.

Ole’ Miss (-3.5) at Arkansas

Husker Mike: How the (bleep) did Bert win last week again? Not happening again this week.  Rebels 28, Karma 17

Ranchbabe: #karma (I really thought that would get old by now, but it does not). Ole Miss 24 Razorbacks 18

Andy: The moonshine trade will come to a screaming halt as 75% of its national workforce is glued to this one. The DNA bouillabaisse in the stands will be something that genetics scientists can contemplate for decades. I wish I could remember who called Bo Wallace "College football Romo". Ole Miss 38 Arky 27

David: Arkansas has played a lot of close games the past couple of years. Now that they’ve finally gotten that first conference win under their belt, I think they turn it into a winning streak this week. Arkansas wins, kinda big, 24-10.

Brian: Ole Miss playing for a backdoor CFB Playoff subsidiary bowl game. Arkansas killed karma last week, it returns this weekend. Hotty Toddy.

Minnesota (+10) at Nebraska

Husker Mike: Up until the second quarter last week, this was an easy call. But after that?  Who the heck knows.  I’m going to stay in the Boliever camp and take a big Husker bounceback victory. Nebraska has too much talent, and will be better focused this week.  But I can certainly see the opposite happening as well.  But I’ll go with Huskers 38, Gophers 21.

Ranchbabe: I am having trouble getting the wifi through my steel-reinforced bunker….

Minnesota is Wisconsin-lite. That should worry Husker fans. It worries me. The fact that we are worried about Minnesota makes some Husker fans certifiable. One bright spot in this game for Husker fans will be getting to see a lot of passes completed to a tight end (Minnesota’s Williams). While Wisconsin was able to repeatedly run around the Husker defense, Minnesota is more likely to try and go right through them. David Cobb is a tremendous back, and Maxx Williams is the leading receiver, but I think the Husker defense is able to hold the edge and make some plays. The offense….I have no idea.  I’ll stick with the prediction I did for the Minny site. Huskers 28 and Gophers 24.

Andy: I did a long version of this for The Daily Gopher and am too damaged to repeat it. Let’s just use this formula:

Fragile team psyche + 11am kickoff + fan base that just waits to get nut-kicked and check out + Gopher team that didn’t back down from Ohio St + Gopher team that pushed us around last year + they are better this year + we are in a worse place = MN  27 NU 23

Or, we bounce back like we typically have under Bo, their lousy QB hucks up about 11 picks like he did against the Buckeyes and Beck rediscovers Westerkamp. Huskers 31 Goofers 21

I don’t know. I just don’t.. Where’s Cobby??

David: Did you know that under Bo Pelini, hasn’t lost back to back regular season games? And while David Cobb is good, he’s not Melvin Gordon and Minnesota’s line isn’t Wisconsin’s. If there’s one thing Bo’s teams do well, it’s rally when there’s seemingly nothing to play for. This game is about pride. I think they play well. I really do. I don’t know what we’ll get from Abdullah, but I think Bell will have a big day in his farewell at Memorial Stadium. I’m also anxious to see what we get from Armstrong after Pelini told him to "go have fun". Will that loosen him up a bit? If it does, I think we could be in for a fun day. It’s gonna be a close game. I think Minnesota pushes this one to the end, but we’ll see a half back pass from Abdullah to Bell to win the game. NU 27-26.

Brian: Well, it’s the last home fight for several Seniors here, and while there’s a punchers chance to win the Big Ten West, it’s about showing that the season still matters. Minny is playing for something, so the hope of them coming out tighter than #LEMONBOOTY could very well happen, as a win guarantees that they play in Camp Randall with a trip to Indy on the line.

Cobb and the Minny O does worry me, but not as much as this offense does. We seem to have one of the biggest dropoff’s with Tim Beck the past couple of weeks between the opening script and the second quarter and so on. Can Nebraska keep the offense enough to actually outscore the Gophers? I dunno, I really don’t.

I say Nebraska wins, because even though there isn’t much to play for outside pride and a decent bowl anymore, the thought of ruining someone’s postseason dream works out pretty well in a lot of spots. Nebraska wins.

But… and a big but, lord help us if Nebraska gets down 2 or more scores. Because if you think this week was brutal, oh good heavens.