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Five Reasons Nebraska Will Win: Michigan State

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Need five reasons to feel good about beating Sparty? Here you go.

NCAA Football: Ohio State at Michigan State Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

ONE: When you have two quarterbacks, you have no quarterbacks

The starter for the past two games for Michigan State has been Brian Lewerke. Unfortunately, or fortunately depending upon your viewpoint, Lewerke has been replaced by Rocky Lombardi in both games.

So who is going to be starting for Michigan State when they travel to Lincoln on Saturday? Well I will leave it to Mark Dantonio to clear it up for you:

“We make decisions and as we go forward those decisions become complicated at times, but we do the very best we can and everybody’s involved,” Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio said Tuesday. “I don’t really think it’s in this team’s best interest to air those decisions prior to football games. I think that’s something that needs to be kept in-house for everybody’s best benefits.”

Thanks Coach!

Well it is rare for an offense to be successful when there are two quarterbacks. I have never believed in a two-quarterback system. If they work, then it is the exception that proves the rule.

So save it about Osborne running a two-quarterback system in the 90s. GET OVER THE 90’S!!!! IF WE STAY STUCK IN THE 90’S THEN FROST WILL NEVER SUCCEED AND HE WILL LEAVE FOR THE ALABAMA JOB WHEN NICK SABAN RETIRES!!

Ok. That feels better.

Anyways, we all know the two quarterbacks that Michigan State currently has on its’ roster are not Tommie Frazier and Brook Berringer.

The defensive coaches at Nebraska actually mentioned Michigan State’s third string quarterback this week. Looks like they tried recruiting him to UCF. So that means something?

TWO: It is Senior Day. Hopefully a Soon To Be Underappreciated Senior Class

At first blush many may want to forget about the current senior class. Most of them were a part of three separate coaching staffs and numerous different coaching philosophies and schemes.

And it isn’t until the second half of their senior seasons (against the hardest part of the schedule) that we have been able to see what this senior class has done.

You could say it did the dirty work for this program. It crawled through the last season for Pelini. Then took punch after punch during the Riley years. Could you blame them for being dismayed with football as the third coaching staff comes in and tries to turn things around?

As seniors when a brand new staff comes in you cannot help but think that you are the last thing on the minds of that coaching staff. When they get there they are already looking forward to replacing you.

If Coach Frost ends up being as successful as we hope in the next several years, this senior class will be the reason why.

This senior class is like the person in a race who climbs up to the top of the wall and sits there and waits. He is waiting because he is going to help those coming behind him. He did the hard work of getting up the wall. He could just move on, but he’s wants to give a hand to those coming behind him in order to make their climb easier.

Scott Frost said as much earlier this week, from Derek Peterson of Hail Varsity:

“I’ve talked a bunch about these seniors, it’s a great group. I feel bad the season hasn’t gone better for them, but at the same time these are going to be some of the guys that the foundation for what we’re going to do going forward is built on. I think they know that and can feel it, and I’m going to be sorry to see a bunch of them go.”

“It’s hard to have a season start the way we had it start and not lose the team, lose hope, lose enthusiasm,” Frost said. “You don’t see a team very often that starts off with that many bad blows being delivered to you and keep improving. A lot of that has to do with these seniors that are leaving and the leadership that they’ve given, fixing a lot of the problems on the team even through those hard things. Changing the expectations even through some of those hard things.

When this senior class is done, this Nebraska football team will be losing a large amount of experience.

Those are a lot of starts that will be heading out the window. But they’ll still be there this week against Michigan State.

I hope the football program takes the steps backs to national prominence and we can look back and tip our caps to this senior class.

THREE: A Weakness of Nebraska is Their Rush Defense. Which Doesn’t Help Michigan State.

Who felt dismayed at watching Illinois run up and down the field on Nebraska last week?

Who felt better after realizing that Illinois has the 8th ranked rushing offense in the country?

Well, it is safe to say that Michigan State is not the 8th ranked rushing offense in the country. In fact, currently they are ranked 115th in running the football. In fact, they are 117th in scoring offense.

So while this Nebraska rushing defense has been a weakness, we shouldn’t lose sleep over that fact since Michigan State does not seem able to run the ball.

FOUR: Strength Against Strength.

Michigan State has the number one rushing defense in the country. Teams are averaging 76.5 rushing yards per game with 2.6 yards per attempt.

Great. Super. Fun. Awesome.

Nebraska has the 22nd rushing offense in the country.

Well that is...something. It is better than nothing. But at least it is something.

Ya that is about it. It is something, and Nebraska will likely have trouble running the ball against Michigan State.

However, I think Nebraska is going to be the best overall offense that Michigan State will see all year. There are only two teams more highly ranked in running the ball than Nebraska, and that is Utah State and Maryland. Utah State plays in a separate (lower tier) conference and Maryland is ranked 125th in the country in passing. Nebraska is ranked in the lower 40s in passing.

The pace in which Nebraska will be running plays will also be something Michigan State hasn’t seen all year, even compared to Purdue.

If Nebraska can get first downs then they will win.

FIVE: Who Has More To Play For?

Nebraska.

It isn’t going to be about qualifying for a bowl game. Michigan State has already qualified. Nebraska will not.

For Nebraska is is about continuing to push the ball of momentum down the hill. Not only into the game against Iowa, but also going into the off-season. If Nebraska can finish the season 5-1, it will be putting the division on notice.

As Coach Frost said at the beginning of the season, “They better get us now.”

There probably aren’t many situations in which a program could start 0-6 and feel at the end of the season that it was successful.

Now you can all debate below about the definition of success. This is why we have sports.

Poll

How does Nebraska fare against Michigan State? (+1.5)

This poll is closed

  • 87%
    Nebraska wins.
    (768 votes)
  • 3%
    Nebraska loses but covers the spread (+1.5)
    (33 votes)
  • 9%
    Nebraska loses and fails to cover the spread
    (81 votes)
882 votes total Vote Now