Nebraska Cornhuskers College Football Preview 2021: What Will Happen, Season Prediction
It could be worse.
Before going on an epic tear of success, Nebraska failed to come up with a winning season between 1955 and 1962.
Even worse, the program followed up a trip to the Rose Bowl in 1940 with nine straight losing seasons.
It’s been four years since Nebraska last had a winning campaign, and that’s not what the place signed up for when Scott Frost left UCF for what seemed like the perfect gig.
So what’s been the problem over the last three years? For all of the various talking points about recruiting, and losing part of the pipeline to Texas, and a few other concerns, they all fall flat considering Northwestern went to two Big Ten championships in the last three seasons.
Minnesota has been solid, and even freakin’ Illinois has made it to a bowl game since Frost took over. That leaves Maryland and Rutgers. Those are the only other Big Ten programs to not get to a bowl game over the last three years.
It’s not necessarily Frost’s fault, but how many Nebraska players have been selected over the last two drafts? Four – and they were all late round fliers.
Of course there have been some excellent Huskers in the NFL over the last several years – Lavonte David and Ndamukong Suh among the best of the bunch – but there hasn’t been a top 50 pick since Prince Amukamara went to the Giants in the first round of the 2011 NFL Draft.
There’s a talent problem. However, there’s a strange positive to not having a ton of elite-level stars. You get back a team loaded with experience.
Set The Nebraska Cornhuskers Regular Season Win Total At … 5.5
There are plenty of promising young players who might change things around in a hurry.
The receiving corps and running backs have a world of upside, the defensive line is as deep and as good as it’s been in the Frost era, and the secondary has the potential to be very, very strong.
If Adrian Martinez turns into the special quarterback everyone thinks he can be, all of a sudden this becomes a dangerous team that can finally break though.
It’s time to go against type and start winning all the close battles – 12 of the losses under Frost have been by eight points or fewer.
Buffalo and SE Louisiana. Those are the two wins. There will be more, but considering how many times lately the Huskers found ways to lose games they seemingly had in hand, there aren’t many sure things.
Illinois, Michigan State, Minnesota are all winnable – but those are on the road – and the Purdue game at home is a must get.
Northwestern, Michigan, Ohio State, Iowa – are you totally sold that Nebraska can win at least two of those? How about the road games at Oklahoma and Wisconsin?
And because there’s been zero luck in the Frost era, the Huskers miss Maryland and Rutgers.
But again, this should be the best Nebraska team in a long while, and there’s no reason to hope for anything less than a winning campaign and a bowl appearance.
It might not be exactly what the base is looking for, but it would be a giant leap forward.
Nebraska is way overdue for a break, and this team might make a few of its own.