clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Friday Flakes: Nebraska Football’s Talent Gap is a Result of More Than a Decade of Neglect

It’s going to take longer than I thought

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

NCAA Football: Ohio State at Nebraska Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

This isn’t going to be surprising to anybody who follows Nebraska football. Especially, if you watched that game last Saturday against Ohio State. The gap between the talent levels of a team like Ohio State (likely playoff team) and Nebraska (definitely not even a possibility) cannot be exaggerated.

Unfortunately, this has been a long time coming for the Nebraska football program. Just a quick look at the average number of NFL draft picks under each coach since Frank Solich.

  • Bill Callahan - 3.75 over four years
  • Bo Pelini - 3.57 over seven years (7 in 2011, and 4 in 2012)
  • Mike Riley - 2.0 over three years
  • Scott Frost - None in 2019

You know what that looks like? A slippery slope and Nebraska has tumbled down to the bottom. We hope.

The talent has gotten worse with each administration. To be fair, if Bill Callahan had kept his job then it sure looks like the numbers could have been a lot different.

So now we arrived to Ohio State last Saturday. That was what I like to term a “snow-ball” game in which things just went so bad for so many reasons that there is nothing you can do to stop the momentum.

Those early calls and non-calls by the officials were brutal. The three interceptions by Adrian Martinez were killers.

During that third drive if Wan’Dale Robinson catches that pass he likely walks into the end-zone and the score is 14-7. Instead it literally falls into the lap of an Ohio State player laying on his back. Which results in a 21-0 game. That is insurmountable. It was a killer.

However, even if Wan’Dale scores that touchdown, I think it is fair to say that we still lose. And probably by 14-20 points. It is because of the difference in the talent level between the two programs at this point. I believe Scott Frost is actually doing a good job trying to supplement that talent level through his first two recruiting classes, but we need to realize that he isn’t a magician.

What do you want him to do? Just for illustration’s sake, over the past four years Ohio State has averaged 8.75 NFL draft picks per year. Nebraska has had less than eight NFL draft picks over the past four years COMBINED!.

Average of 1.50 per year. What do you want him to do with that?

“Play better.”

Ya, I get it. Many of you know that I fought the Kool-Aid all off-season. Some of you have even said that my writing is too negative at times. However, even with my negative view I did have higher expectations for some of the players than what I saw last Saturday.

Luckily, it is just one game and contending in the west division is right in front of us. Starting with Northwestern.

Sports! Sports! Sports!

Huskers announce some non-conference schedule news
Mark your 2023 and 2027 calendars. There's some Husker scheduling news to pass along.

Who's on Campus: Familiar names making returns to Lincoln
Nebraska will have four visitors this weekend and three of them know Nebraska pretty well already, as they’re already committed to the Huskers.

Frost talks Khalil Davis suspension
Nebraska head coach Scott Frost said the Husker program heard earlier in the week that defensive lineman Khalil Davis might be facing a suspension for striking an Ohio State player in the first quarter of Saturday’s loss to the Buckeyes.

On Wednesday morning, the punishment was handed down, and didn’t get much pushback from Frost and the Nebraska program.

Husker Quick Hits: Turnover talk and freshmen near contributing
There was a lot of turnover talk with Scott Frost on Thursday after the initial inquiries about what he thought of the one-game suspension handed to Khalil Davis.

Tom's Time: The Game of the Century II Looked Great on Paper | Hail Varsity
To quote Alice in Wonderland. “Curiouser and curiouser!”

That might describe the context of the 1987 Nebraska-Oklahoma game, which Sports Illustrated’s Rick Telander called the “Battle of the Century II” (the 1971 Nebraska-Oklahoma game had been called the “Game of the Century”), beginning with the week leading up to it when the Huskers moved ahead of the Sooners in the rankings, from No. 2 to No. 1.

Warriors' Draymond Green responds to Klay Thompson trolling on Instagram
You didn't think Draymond Green was going to go down quietly, right?

If you did, then shame on you.

So here's what happened:


British Library digitizes earliest surviving copy of New Testament--Aleteia
The British Library, as part of an initiative to digitize ancient manuscripts from the world’s great religions, has made the oldest surviving complete copy of the New Testament available online.

The Brothers Grimm fairy tales had unexpected origins
The world's most famous collection of children's stories began as an academic study for adults, when Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm collected German folklore in the 1800s.

Modern Humans' Advanced Weapons Outclassed the Neanderthals | Ancient Origins
A team of Japanese and Italian researchers, sponsored by Tohoku University, have proven evidence of mechanically delivered projectile weapons in Europe dating to 45,000 - 40,000 years ago -- more than 20,000 years sooner than previously thought.


Well that last one might not exactly be considered the best...but closer to terrifying.