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Staff Roundtable: B1G's Biggest Hot Seat, #Nebrasketball's Future Expectations, 72 Ounce Steaks

We ask the staff this weekend about who is under the gun the most in the Big Ten Football scene, whether 7.5 wins for Nebraska Football is too high or low, and who can outeat a Nebraska woman in Amarillo

Look to your left, you'll see the haters.
Look to your left, you'll see the haters.
Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

Our friends at BT Powerhouse did a story on Wednesday about Nebrasketball. They do believe that since the core of Petteway, Shield and Pitchford return, Tim Miles’ team should be even better next season. Buying or selling that, and why?

Cobcast Ryan: Buying it. I don’t know much about basketball. I’ve been getting into it over the past two years but I’m still a novice. However, when good players stay teams tend to do better at anything.

Salt Creek: Big Ten champs, baby.

Mister Mike: I’m buying.  Coach Miles has shown that he can build teams in the past, and with Nebrasketball, he’s about a year and half or two ahead of schedule.  With his core returning in Shields, Petteway, and Pitchford plus the addition of transfer Moses Ayegba from Georgetown, which should provide some size, and hopefully improved PG play from Webster and/or Smith, and I think next year’s team could be even better.

Andy K.: Right now, a very slight sell, but that could change. It’s nice to see Miles aiming higher in recruiting, but right now he seems to be hitting many of the same targets as his predecessors. We can’t live on transfers alone and seems to be our talent core thus far. However, if he can pull a surprise and land that first big-time recruit,  then I take it all back. I’m fickle that way. And I want the guy to succeed. OK, maybe we can live on transfers alone - just call us the K-State of basketball. OK, now I’m sick.

David: I guess I’m obligated to answer this one, right? I’m holding with a slight lean towards selling for next season, buying long term. This is unplowed territory for NU. Playing with expectations is not the same thing as playing the role they did last year, just ask Iowa. Teams will have a better plan for Petteway. They’ll have a plan for taking away Pitchford’s 3 at the beginning of the game. It’s going to be harder for NU to do the things they did last year. They won’t catch teams off guard. Will NU be ready for that challenge? Everybody will be picking them to be among the top teams in the Big Ten next year. They earned that privilege last year. How will they handle it.

Despite that success, they’re still probably in the middle half of the league in terms of raw talent. I saw a comment in one of those BT Powerhouse articles that called NU "loaded", they’re not. They still have some depth questions. What happens if (God forbid) one or more of the big three goes down? That stuff happens in sports, how will they handle that? Really, they didn’t face that much adversity last year. They shouldn’t expect it to be like that next year. I’m holding, but they’ve got a chance to be special.

Also, on the recruiting front, be more concerned in November, not now. The field was ploughed and seeds were sown this season for the harvest of recruits beginning, hopefully this fall. That work was for then, not for now, though we’ve seen a bit of an early crop with Ayegba and some interest from some of the top transfers this year. This isn’t an immediate gratification game, here. It’s going to take some more time to fully get on the radars of the real game changers. Hopefully that starts in November. Another big season on the court and you’ll have everyone’s attention. Gotta prove last year wasn’t a fluke. That won’t be easy.

Ty: I have to buy.  This is exactly what Miles was doing at CSU, and why we hired him.  He worked with less in Fort Collins and made the tourney.  Now, honestly we picked him up before we could see if he could continue that success.  The team made it out of the first round in 2013, but that’s not a statement for or against Miles, in my opinion.  He builds programs, and found a great one to build at Nebraska.  We can keep listing the OTHER advantages he has at UNL he didn’t have other places (PBA, revitalized fan base, admin support).  I’m buying.  It seems a good investment right now.

Brian: I’ll buy but get the extended warranty. There’s one thing to be expected to be DFL in the Conference, it’s another thing when people finally notice you. Granted, the big 3 do come back, but what if 1 or 2 of them go down to injury in the B1G schedule? Your lack of depth on the bench is going to be shown big time.

Coming into the Big Ten Football season, which Head Coach is on the biggest hotseat?

Cobcast Ryan: In Nebraska its Bo Pelini. Husker fans are fickle.  In won’t happen. Everywhere else its probably Brady Hoke but as long as there are still sandwiches on this planet he’ll be fine.

Salt Creek: If Brady Hoke doesn’t wear his headset this fall and Michigan is once again abysmal, he may be available for promoting your local manball convention come January. How the hell Lewan went in the first round is still a mystery to me. Wish I could get paid millions to spend an entire fall watching football. (Which is what Lewan did last fall.)

Mister Mike: An interesting question.  I’d say Hoke right now, with Pelini in 2nd place.  The Michigan-folk are about ready to burn him at the stake in the Big House for two straight disappointing, underwhelming, and flat out regression filled seasons.  We’ll see if canning Al Borges as OC and bringing in Nussmeier and his hybrid type pro-style offense will work in Ann Arbor.

As far as Pelini is concerned, we’ll see if the Devil’s Luck continues to embrace him this season.  Two early tests in Fresno State and Miami may give a good idea of how this season may go.  Lose one or both, especially by a blowout, and it’ll be time to grab a beverage, a ham sandwich, and front row seat to watch how the season and Bo’s future play out.  That said, if Pelini wins 8+ games this year, even with the soft schedule, then he’ll be roaming the sidelines in Lincoln in 2015.

Andy K: Hoke. ESPN and the CFB press embarrassingly slobbered all over Fat ‘n’ Folksy & his overrated, inconsistent QB before last season and brayed about the huge year in store for Michigan. They were dead wrong, so, of course, they’ll take it out on them at every little slip-up this season.  Losing close games to Ohio St. won’t be enough to save him although he might have 2 more years left. Fine job of slowing down that offense by the way. Shouldn’t Al Borges have gotten a bonus?

Oh, also, Urban Meyer is in his 3rd year, so look for him to begin losing control of the roster near the end of this season with another fake anxiety disorder or heart attack to follow after season 4.

Ty: Wow.  See, my instinct is to say Fitzgerald at Northwestern.  The team pissed it down its leg last season.  Expectations were through the roof for them, and this year he’s got the added… pressure’s the wrong word… intrigue of the CFB union stuff.

However, I have to agree and say it’s Hoke at Michigan.  Since Lloyd Carr, no one’s been able to match the expectations that Wolverine fans set.  Sounds familiar.

Brian: I have to think it’s a tie between Hoke and Tim Beckman. How much of a leash should Beckman get? He honestly did nothing with Nathan Scheelhaase, and he now has to decide between Wes Lunt and Reilly O’Toole. Plus, Donovonn Young is a pretty good resource to waste. Hoke, if he can’t do something big, yea I buy that. I also think that Hazell at Purdue is on the torch a little bit, but it’s hard to buy when no one cares about the Football program there (but they have a engineering school by God). Adding Maryland this year, you can just plaster Randy Edsall on there too.

As far as Bo, scratching the broken record here in that if it’s another 9 win season, who’s gonna fire him? Kevin Wilson of Indiana has more fire under his seat to do something more than 5 wins than Bo does if he's a 9 game winner.

Vegas says Nebraska’s line for wins in the ‘14 Football season is 7.5. That seems a touch low. Why do you think that is?

Cobcast Ryan: Its low because its always low. We have never been given respect in my lifetime. Plus Nebraska has a lot of rabble rousers. I think we have one of the greatest fan bases (probably the greatest) BUT we have a small but LOUD section that turns on Bo and the team at the first bad play. You will recognize them as soon as we play Fresno State (whom we beat). We win 11. Maybe 12. We got a good program, a good bunch of kids.

Salt Creek: Because of people like us, basically. We’re going to make OWH and LJS write pieces about how Pelini is getting fired for hating corgis or something. ("JOHNNY STANTON SHOULD BE THE STARTER" will be the title of no less than 300 articles the day after we lose to Fresno State behind Armstrong.) Another negative environment this fall and the team falls apart and everyone clamors for a clean up at One Memorial. I’m talking EPA Superfund toxicity levels here. It’s going to be horrible, as always. (It’s June, we have no football and the sports world is basically lists and bullshit, so I’m a little ornery.)

Andy K: Because bookmakers are idiots. Don’t they know that the pieces for a national championship are all in place?? Well, at least until our first 3-and-out against the Hurricanes.

Mister Mike: Yeah it’s low, because the weakness of the schedule basically all but guarantees 9 wins.  IF we win less than that...things will get interesting in a hurry.

Also, I’m going to disagree with my man Salt here.  I don’t think fan "negativity" (whatever the hell that’s supposed to mean anyway) impacts the team as much as North Stadium Mouthpiece Steve Sipple, Sam McKewon, and some of our fans would have us think.  Besides, Bo said he doesn’t pay attention to any of that stuff anyway (Right?).  So some idiot fans decide to tweet back and forth at Kenny Bell.  So what?  Deal and move on.  Is it unfair?  Maybe.  But it’s nothing new.  Only in Nebraska does it become this big of a deal, because...Bo Pelini.  It goes with the territory with social media.  Also, I wasn’t aware the fan angst was the reason we gave up 38 points to Iowa, or for Armstrong throwing 3 interceptions, or Ameer fumbling, or getting blown out by UCLA, or giving up 600 yards to Wyoming.  On and on and on.  Have we set up some kind of device that psychically projects fan angst in the direction of Bo Pelini and Kenny Bell and his Twitter account or something and causes them to choke in big games?  I think it’s a convenient excuse when people are at a lack to explain what happened in Lincoln last year.  Lost the Minnesota game?  "OMG!! The FANS MADE IT HAPPEN!!"  Turned the ball over 5 times against MSU?  "Stupid Nebraska fans!!!  Bo Pelini HATERZ!! IT’S ALL YOUR FAULTZ!!!"


Mister Mike: See what I mean?

Ty: Seriously you two?

We’ve been overlooked nationally since Eric Crouch.  If we can depend on Bo for one thing, it’s losing his sh*t at officials and the media.  If we can depend on him for TWO things, the second is winning nine games.  I also think we have the foundation in place to win more like 10 or 11.  To echo what everyone else has said, the Miami and Fresno State games will tell us a LOT about what we have this year.

Brian: OVERLOOKED?!! AFLKJKLS;LKJ…….  No freaking way we’re overlooked. We have done nothing to be overlooked at. I love Nebraska Football as much as anyone, but you can’t say we’re overlooked after not making a BCS bowl or winning a conference title since the turn of the century. The win total is low, but that’s to induce action. Of course Nebraska is winning 8 or more games this year, right? RIGHT??

A Nebraska woman went to Amarillo and ate TWO 72 ounce steaks. Could you even do just one? Would you want to do even just one?

Salt Creek: That’s a nice dinner and a month of steak salads. But all at once? That young lady is someone’s dream girl, no doubt. (You forgot to mention she was only 120 pounds.)

Cobcast Ryan: I live in Los Angeles and thats a $1300 meal. So no, unless you count tofu steak. Thats cheap around these parts.

Andy K: Do even just one Nebraska woman or 72-ounce steak? The question is confusing.

Mister Mike: I thought Andy preferred sheep?

Andy K.: As Charlie Runkle says, "Holes is holes". (If you don’t know who Charlie Runkle is, stop what you’re doing and go get Season 1 of "Californication". Do it right now.)

Ty: *Broken* Thanks Andy.  Now I can’t answer the question.

Brian: I could eat that big of a steak. Now, I can’t move for 2 days after that and such, but I could eat that much. Haven’t you ever crushed a Brazilian Steakhouse? Too easy. Now, in a time limit? Nah.