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Sunday, September 06, 2009

New Recruit; S Harvey Jackson

Harvey-Jackson3* Safety Harvey Jackson was offered by Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Baylor, and Missouri to name a few. Nebraska now has 6 commits for the 2010 class. We need not worry.

For his Scout profile, click here.
For his Rivals profile, click here.
For his ESPN Scouts, Inc. profile, click here.

Week 1 Nebraska Videos, Highlights, & Some Quick Thoughts

Tunnel Walk....


My thoughts:

- The future is very bright at QB with Zac Lee and Cody Green. Zac Lee was arguably better than advertised. Tell me you weren't excited when Rex Burkhead and Cody Green were in the backfield yesterday. Said Burkhead,

"He was getting excited when he knew he was coming in, for me to be in the backfield him. It's kind of that Texas thing. It was fun to be back there with him. You develop a bond with him, and hopefully it carries on for the next few years."

- What a pleasant surprise to see one of the fastest guys in college football show a nice set of hands. Curenski Gilleylen and Zac Lee look as if they have a great connection on the field.

- This comment I made - "Nebraska has two running backs of Derrick Washington's (Missouri) caliber" - was back when Quentin Castille was still on board and of course, I was ripped by all of my friends on TigerBoard (I've even been called a ****ing cockbag there out of the blue so I wouldn't expect anything less). And for you Missouri fans, I do think Blaine Gabbert looked great. But guess what, I wouldn't trade Roy Helu for Derrick Washington right now. No way. If Roy stays healthy, there's a real chance he could be looking at an All-Conference bid in 2009. Here's your NCAA leaders after week 1:

1. Ralph Bolden (Purdue)212342
2. Joe Webb (QB, UAB)201942
3. Montario Hardesty (Tenn.)181601
4. Shawnbrey McNeal. (SMU)191581
5. Jordan Todman (UConn)251571
6. Matt Asiata (Utah)361562
7. Roy Helu Jr. (Neb.)161523

Best. Post-game news conference outfit. Ever. Here's the video.

Roy Helu- clothes

- Our defense gets it. Whether or not Bo Pelini wants to admit it, this defense is much improved. How good is Cameron Meredith going to be?

- Overall, even though the statistics didn't necessarily show it, Nebraska was impressive.

Florida AtlanticNebraska
1st Downs2222
Total Yards358490

Still, too many penalties. But, as I've hit on before, the turnover margin needed to improve this season and it did. It's so very important.

- Losing RB Darren Evans certainly hurts the Virginia Tech team. However, I also happen to think they're not great by any means, and I really do think Virginia Tech is beatable in Blacksburg for Nebraska. I'm not saying we are going to win - yet, but there's no question we have a chance to. In last year's game in Lincoln, the Huskers had two turnovers that ultimately cost them the game 30-35.

- Next week's opponent, Arkansas State, looked great even though it was against Mississippi Valley State. They'll be a better test than Florida Atlantic.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Anterio Sloan Decommits; Nebraska Now Down To 5 Recruits For 2010

And here we go again.

4* CB Anterio Sloan (West Helena, Arkansas) has opened his recruiting back up and from what he says, I wouldn't get real excited about his chances of suiting up for the Huskers next fall (link.) Says Anterio:

"Auburn, Kentucky and Mississippi State are on me real hard," the 5-foot-9, 165-pound Sloan said. "Those are the only three schools on me real hard. Auburn hasn't offered yet, but they've been sending me a ton of mail."

"I'm also thinking I really want to see how Auburn, Kentucky and Mississippi State are going to be. They are the schools recruiting me the hardest so they probably have the edge right now. I'd say it would be Auburn at the top and then Kentucky and then Mississippi State and then Nebraska. That would be my top four."

Evidently, junk mail is the way to win over this kid's heart. Nebraska's failure to recruit Anterio 'real hard' might have something to do with the fact that he committed back on April 5th. The best part about his list is that Auburn sits at the top. Not only has Anterio not visited the school, but Auburn has yet to offer him. Anterio's just one recruit and by what he just recently said, I'm not sure if he's the right fit here anyway.

With Keeston Terry recently decommitting in favor of Kansas and now Sloan on his way to the SEC, Nebraska's list for 2010 sits at a cool five. Take a look at how Nebraska compares to the Big 12 right now courtesy of Scout:

9Oklahoma State223.27
10Texas A&M203.35
21Texas Tech182.94
67Kansas State102.40
90Iowa State42.50

We're not exactly Iowa State or Colorado right now, but then again we don't need to be worrying about that. We do have a solid five recruits and that is reflected by the 'average ranking' there. The problem is that number is only five and right now it's not close to Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Baylor, Missouri, and Kansas - never mind Oklahoma and Texas.

It's August and I know we will fill this class by February. However, take a look at the recruits we have lined up for visits this fall in Lincoln right here. 10 recruits is all and one of those is Donovan Vestal. While these other schools continue to fill up their classes while ours continues to fluctuate around five, the pool of recruits we have to choose from begins to dwindle down. Let's get the ball rolling here.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Florida Atlantic Burns An "N" At A Campus Rally; No Owls Were Harmed In The Fire

Don't tell Howard Schnellenberger that his 22-point underdog Florida Atlantic Owls don't have a chance against Nebraska on September 5th. In fact, if this video tells you anything, it's that he can't wait to get another crack at taking down the Huskers.

We Pressed The Button

Soon, you'll be taken to our new home away from home of sorts - As you'll see, football will be better, girls will be prettier, and even T Rose will look a little more handsome. Over there, I'm going to post a little tutorial on how you can navigate your way around the site. We'll have some new things you'll have to get used to such as commenting, forums, polls, and other features that I'll tell you about when I'm qualified to do so.

Until then, bear with us and we hope you enjoy the switch. See you on the flip side.

P.S. - The 'Smokeshow of the Week' will be on the main stage today (not here)...

Quentin Castille To Enroll @ Northwestern State (LA); Hopes To Play September 5th vs. Houston

Although schools such as Memphis, Oregon, and Texas Southern all came calling, it appears former Husker RB Quentin Castille will play for the Demons of Northwestern State, which is located in Natchitoches, LA. The move down to Division 1-AA (FCS) will allow Castille to use one of his two years of remaining eligibility immediately. As you know at Memphis or Oregon, there would have been a one year grace period before he would have been able to see the field because they are in the same division as Nebraska.

Apparently, it was love at first site for Quentin according to his mom, Wanda:
“As mom, I kind of stepped out of it because I didn’t want any influence on his decision. But I do know he talked about liking the coaching staff that was there ... and he said he felt a chemistry with the players when he got there.”
Castille said that he hopes to play vs. Houston on September 5th - which is 20 miles from his hometown. The Demons are coached by Bradley Dale Peveto, who was a linebackers coach under Bo Pelini at LSU. Obviously, Bo still thinks highly enough of Quentin to refer him to a former colleague.

Maybe I'm wrong, but the direction I see Quentin taking here is the fastest, most direct path to the NFL. After this season, Quentin qualifies under the '3-year rule' and will be able to enter the NFL draft next April. I'm not seeing this move having anything to do with academics but having everything to do with getting on the field as soon as possible and dominating for a season. No question he's already in game shape and no question he has the size and speed to turn the NFL scouts' heads when he will more than likely hit the combine this winter.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Video From Wednesday's Less-Than-Stellar Husker Practice

Coach Pelini wasn't in a good mood yesterday:
"Doesn’t matter whether it’s the beginning, end, middle. It doesn’t really matter, does it? .... We're not a real good football team right now, for a lot of reasons. No one's stepped up and taken control. Bunch of average guys running around out there right now."
Video courtesy of the OWH:

Remember This Guy? Former Husker Kicker Jordan Congdon Wins Starting Job At USC

With super kicker David Buehler in the NFL, it was time for USC to turn to someone new this fall to take over the kicking duties. And talk about a 'blast from the past,' that new kicker is none other than former Husker kicker Jordan Congdon. If you recall, Jordan had himself a nice little career at Nebraska before he transferred back to USC to be closer to home. Taken from
  • 2005 First-Team Freshman All-American (Football Writers,,
  • 2005 First-Team Freshman All-Big 12 (The Sporting News)
  • 2005 Second-Team All-Big 12 (AP, San Antonio Express News, Austin American-Statesman, Kansas City Star)
  • Nebraska Record for Field Goals in a Season (19)
  • First Nationally Among Freshmen in Field Goal Accuracy (.826)
  • Tied For 16th Nationally and Second in Big 12 in FG per Game (1.58)
  • 2006 Preseason Second-Team All-Big 12 (Lindy’s)
  • 2006 Lou Groza Collegiate Place-Kicker Award Watch List
  • 2006 Big 12 Commissioner’s Spring Academic Honor Roll
  • 2005 Big 12 Commissioner’s Fall Academic Honor Roll
Said Congdon about his experience and about his competition with K Joe Houston,
"Hopefully it will help me in games. I'll go in there with more confidence than maybe a guy that didn't have all the reps in games. He's going to be there all season and if I'm not doing my job, I know they're not going have any problem putting him in."
Jordan was awarded a scholarship for his hard work. Can't say I won't be hoping he has a successful season with the Trojans.

These Bud Light Fan Cans Aren't For You

(That red and white up there? Yeah, you can't have it.)

If you haven't heard by now, many college campuses across the country are not exactly happy with Anheuser-Busch's new marketing strategy. The promotion goes something exactly like this:
"Show your true colors with Bud Light. This year, only Bud Light is delivering superior drinkability in 12-ounce cans that were made for gameday."
The beer company is planning on selling 27 different color combinations of their Bud Light cans specifically targeted at certain schools and their fan bases. And although the cans don't bear the school's name, the colors just so happen to directly coincide with the school colors. I think it's a brilliant marketing idea for a company that has seen it's first decline in sales in over 25 years, but don't tell that to school administrators. Any school that has written or voiced a formal complaint has been dropped from the promotion.

And as you could have guessed, don't count on grabbing your red and white Bud Light cans anywhere in Nebraska anytime soon. Nebraska Athletic Director Tom Osborne is leading the cause to have the Anheuser-Busch distributors not join in on the fun across the state. In fact, only one distributor in Nebraska - Sandhills Distributing in North Platte, Neb - has received a shipment of red and white cans, but they have yet to send any out.

Along with the Nebraska, so far you won't find any of these cans in Colorado, Michigan, Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana, and Massachusetts - just to name a few. However, if you are planning on traveling to a game this fall in Ames, expect to get to the beer store early if you want a "Maroon and Gold" can. Rich Parizek - of Campustown Liquor near Iowa State University - said 'it was a great idea' and these cans have been 'selling like hotcakes.'

For more information on these cans, you can visit Bud Light's 'Tailgate Approved' here.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Virginia Tech 'Enter Sandman' Entrance

After watching this, tell me you're not ready for September 19th.

Tuesday's Offensive Practice Report

Some interesting things taken from Jon Nyatawa of the OWH after practice on Tuesday:
  • Cody Green has emerged ahead of Latravis Washington and is now the #2 QB behind Zac Lee. According to Shawn Watson, Green has been "making better decisions." It should be interesting to see what type of playing time Green will get in the first two games. Obviously, the redshirt debate is over with now. How about Cody Green and Rex Burkhead in the same backfield vs. Florida Atlantic? Uh, yeah!
  • Although Watson wants a group of seven receivers to rotate this season, it appears only one - Niles Paul - has cemented himself in the rotation. I still expect some of the veterans - Menelik Holt and Chris Brooks namely - to have by far their best seasons as Huskers. Also, you have to know by now that our tight ends are going to put up big numbers and take some of the burden off of this group. In fact, don't be shocked if we see Mike McNeill put up Jermaine Gresham type of numbers this season.
  • It sounds as if Marcus Mendoza is already feeling comfortable back at running back. Said Mendoza,
    “I had kind of talked to the coaches about it before, and then the situation (with Quentin Castille) happened, and then made the switch back.I’m not going back thinking that I earned anything just because I've been there. I know I’ve got to compete and work for a job, and that's what I'm doing."
    His time working with the receivers should prove to be a valuable asset when we need to rely on the passing game. I've always been a fan of Mendoza's speed and elusiveness. It's just a shame that he can't grow to 6'1, 235 lbs on third and short.
  • With DJ Jones pushing Marcel Jones at right tackle and Andy Christensen battling Ricky Henry at guard, the offensive line is proving to be deep. I'd still be very surprised, however, if Ricky Henry and Marcel Jones don't start.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Future Of Watching College Football Is Here

After two long years of testing, ESPN has announced that it will be producing a '3D' telecast of the USC-Ohio State game Sept. 12 at 8 p.m. ET.

Theaters in Columbus, OH, Hartford, CN, Hurst, TX, and the Galen Center on the USC campus will be showing the game in 3D and the only way to watch is to win tickets through the ESPN radio affiliate in those cities.

In fact, ESPN will have its own 3D crew - Bob Davie and Mark Jones - as well as have the regular 2D crew of Brent Musburger, Kirk Herbstreit and Lisa Salters on ESPN and ESPN HD.

Will a three-dimensional Erin Andrews be coming to a home near you? Very likely...

Thunder Collins Ain't No Snitch

According to Thunder, he was found guilty because he didn't 'snitch' on his friends. Like he said, 'if you're going to be a rat, be a rat. But at least tell the truth.' That's just standard protocol in the drug underworld - everyone knows that.

Besides Thunder's friends, guess who else is a bunch of snitches?? That's right, Tennessee.

This is just one more opportunity to show one of my favorite YouTube videos of all time from the DXP archives. That's right, it's the 'I Hate Tennessee' Alabama fan. Unlike Thunder's buddies, you gotta love this guy.

Monday, August 24, 2009

More Sobering News - Thunder Collins Guilty

From the OWH:
"A Douglas County jury has found former Nebraska running back Thunder Collins guilty of first-degree murder and other charges.

The panel of six men and six women, who began deliberating Friday afternoon, returned the verdict about 2 p.m. today.

Prosecutors had urged the jury to convict Collins of first-degree murder, attempted second-degree murder, first-degree assault and three counts of weapon use. He was found guilty on the murder and assault charges.

Collins attorney, Steve Lefler, said that prosecutors failed to prove their case, contending they rushed to judgment and relied on drug dealers, thieves and liars to build their case against Collins.

Timothy Thomas, 38, died after being shot while cutting cocaine out of an SUV in the garage of a home near 70th Circle and Military Avenue on Sept. 23, 2008. His cousin, Marshall Turner, was wounded in the shooting.

Prosecutors told the jury that Collins had the two California drug dealers bring cocaine to Omaha to make quick and easy money. Collins and another man then pounced, shooting the men on Sept. 23 during an attempt to rob them of more than a kilo of cocaine, according to trial testimony.

Collins did not testify during the two-week-long trial. Lefler suggested that Collins' one-time friend, Ahmad Johnson, was the mastermind of the robbery, nothing that Johnson has a previous robbery conviction."

Rex Burkhead Fever Has Begun

As Mitch Sherman from the OWH alluded to today, the myth, the legend that is Rex Burkhead is about to appear before our very eyes much sooner than we could have ever expected.

Some quotes taken from Sherman's post:
Tom Inman, Burkhead’s former basketball coach:
“I remember five years ago when everybody told me Rex Burkhead was going to be a middle school stud, high school dud. I told them, ‘You’re crazy.’ For all those people who say he’s overrated, just wait four more years until he’s turned that Nebraska program around. You don’t know how much Rex would just love to be a kid named Rex from Texas. Those days are gone, but he is still so amazingly uncomfortable with all the attention.””
Harvard defensive end Reid McCann, Burkhead’s former prep foe at Lake Highlands High School in Dallas:
"I’ll tell you right now, you don’t ever doubt Rex Burkhead. Call me in four years, because I’m sure people will doubt that he’s going to do it in the NFL. But he’ll always prove you wrong. I’m a huge Rex Burkhead fan, because I know that no matter what, he wants it more than you do.”
The nicknames for Burkhead are going to plentiful to begin with, but I just wonder what's going to stick.

Lou Holtz Picks Florida & Notre Dame In The BCS Title Game & I Don't Think He's That Crazy

When I put Notre Dame at #8 in my preseason BlogPoll, I knew that wasn't going to be a popular choice in the minds of others. Evidently, I have at least one person I'm on common ground with and that's of course, Lou Holtz. (Notre Dame is at #23 in both the AP and Coaches' preseason polls.)

So how crazy is Dr. Lou?? There's no question he's out of his mind most of the time and his history of picking Notre Dame in every game the past few seasons shouldn't make you believe otherwise. However, he's not as far off on this topic as some are making him to be and I can try to tell you why.

The other day Corn Nation brought up the question of whether Notre Dame should even be ranked to Irish blogger Rakes Of Mallow. I believe Rakes Of Mallow put it best by saying, "As an Irish fan, I'm trained not to be optimistic, but dammit, this team could be good. I'm also completely and totally prepared for the team to lose to Nevada, but you should have them ranked."

I'm on Rakes' side here.

Before you roll your eyes, let's look at a few points regarding the Irish for the upcoming season that I probably should have explained before in my BlogPoll post.

First, Notre Dame has it all coming back. 15 starters return for a team that went 7-6 last season. And in that 2008 season, Notre Dame blew 3 double-digit leads - North Carolina, Pittsburgh, and Syracuse - that could have put them at 10 wins depending on what bowl game opponent they might have faced.

Along with Qb Jimmy Clausen, Notre Dame returns their entire backfield with Armando Allen, Robert Hughes, James Aldridge, and Jonas Gray (remember him, Husker fans?). Also back are WR's Golden Tate, Michael Floyd, and Duval Kamara as well as TE's Kyle Rudolph and Mike Ragone. That's easily one of the best receiving groups in the country that Clausen has the luxury of throwing the ball to. And all but one of those aforementioned skill position players (only one senior in the group) were rated in the Top 13 for their positions out of high school - the only one who wasn't was Golden Tate. Also returning on offense is what many consider by far their best O-line of the century that includes 8 of the top 10 on the depth chart from a year ago - including 4 starters. The offense should be great.

On the defensive side of the ball, 6 starters are back from a team that finished #39 in total defense a year ago. In the secondary, Notre Dame returns 3 of 4 starters including the team's leading tackler in S Kyle McCarthy. Not included there is CB Darrin Walls, a former US Army All-American that sat out last season with injury. At LB, the Irish will have one of the top overall recruits out of high school from a year ago - Manti Te'O - as well as one of the top linebacker recruits from two years ago - Steve Filer. The defensive line will return only two starters, but will add Ethan Johnson (#2 DE in the 2008 recruiting class) into the lineup. This group will improve dramatically on their #45 rushing defense and their #50 ranking in sacks.

Consider the recruiting classes that are there right now.
  • In 2006 - 8th ranked recruiting class.
  • In 2007 - 8th ranked recruiting class.
  • In 2008 - 2nd ranked recruiting class.
  • In 2009 - 21st ranked recruiting class.
For comparison to what Weis has had to work with before, Notre Dame's 2004 recruiting class was 32nd and the 2005 class was 40th.

No fewer than 16 players from the very highly-touted 2007 and 2008 classes (juniors and sophomores) are projected to start this season. Remember that Notre Dame (for the most part) doesn't redshirt players so these players have had only one and two years in the program before this season. This season will be their second and third years which will obviously make an enormous difference.

On paper, it's all there.

Second and most importantly, you MUST consider this schedule.

2009 Notre Dame Football Schedule

Sept. 5 NEVADA
Sept. 12 at Michigan
Sept. 26 at Purdue
Oct. 10 Open Date
Oct. 17 USC
Oct. 31 vs. Washington State (at San Antonio, Texas)
Nov. 7 NAVY
Nov. 14 at Pittsburgh
Nov. 28 at Stanford

Go ahead and pick out one game other than USC where they wouldn't be a favorite in Las Vegas right now. You can't.

And before you're quick to write off that October 17th USC game in South Bend, remember that the Trojans return only 3 starters on defense as well as they must replace Mark Sanchez with either Aaron Corp or Matt Barkley - neither of whom have ever thrown a pass in college. In the 2005 "Bush-Push" game where USC escaped with a 34-31 win, you saw a much better USC team than you'll see this season.

The rest of the schedule has only 4 true road games. Furthermore, if you eliminate USC from that miserable group, the best team they'll play is #28 and #30 ranked Pittsburgh - who is still coached by the 'Stache.

So what has talent at Notre Dame done for Charlie Weis thus far? Absolutely nothing. In fact, Notre Dame's 15 losses the past two seasons are the most in school history. Furthermore, Weis' overall winning % in 4 seasons is lower than Ty Willingham's and Bob Davie's.

Why should we expect anything different from the Irish in 2009 as opposed to 2008? We shouldn't. However, understand that this is without a doubt the most talented team Weis has had and they're going to win at least 9 games this season based on the combination of experience and weaker opponents.

If Notre Dame would finish 11-1 would they deserve to be in the BCS title game? Probably not if there's another one loss team, but there's a good chance that they might play in it regardless. And guess what? If they do lose two games somewhere in that schedule, then they'll still probably go to a BCS game. That's the 'rule' with Notre Dame as they did so in 2005 and 2006.

Part of the preseason speculation involving this sport and the arguments that ensue from sometimes absurd predictions are what helps make this the best game in America. Sometimes you're a genius and sometimes you're an idiot. The bottom line is that you just never know.

I'll get back to you in October.