Saturday, January 1, 2011

Nebraska Limps into the Big 10

(Please welcome guest blogger, Arrend Jelsma. Arrend lives in Florida with his wife Nicole and newborn baby girl, Claire. Arrend is my cousin and is a passionate sports fan just like myself. Unlike myself, Arrend is a HUGE Hawkeye fan, and should add some balance to the Sports Caffeine site! Welcome Arrend!)

By Arrend Jelsma

Thursday night’s 19-7 Holiday Bowl loss to Washington is further proof that Nebraska’s entry into the Big 10 will be no picnic for Cornhusker fans.

Upon announcement of their entry into the Big 10, Nebraska fans have been purchasing their Big 10 title T-shirts by the thousands in Lincoln. But before they set their sights on the Stagg-Paterno trophy, they are going to need to replace their quarterback “T-Magic” (Taylor Martinez).

While racking up over 100yds per game rushing in 5 out of his first 7 games, Martinez (like Denard Robinson at Michigan) was being brought up in Heisman talks across the country. This made Big 10 fans nervous as Nebraska enters the Big 10 Legends division next fall. But as the season wore on, teams started to realize Martinez’s inability to throw the football and were able to stop his running style. Taylor only threw for over 200 yards in 1 game last year.

As the season wore on his running ability didn’t look nearly as explosive and it seemed like something was systematically wrong with the Nebraska offense. Late in the season, there were some highly viewed YouTube videos of Nebraska coach Bo Pelini melting down on Martinez on the sidelines during the Texas A&M game, and although we don’t know exactly what was said, it certainly didn’t look like a coach that was in love with his quarterback.

Like Denard Robinson, 6’0- 200 pound quarterbacks will not be effective over the span of an entire season in the Big 10 trying to run the football. They will play great the first 4 games and put up video game statistics, but if you can’t throw effectively you won’t compete for conference titles. If Nebraska wants to make it to the title game next year it won’t be with Taylor Martinez.

I predict at least 3 losses with this schedule:

Date Game
Sept. 3 Tennessee-Chattanooga at Nebraska
Sept. 10 Fresno State at Nebraska
Sept. 17 Washington at Nebraska
Sept. 24 Nebraska at Wyoming
Oct. 1 Nebraska at Wisconsin
Oct. 8 Ohio State at Nebraska
Oct. 22 Nebraska at Minnesota
Oct. 29 Michigan State at Nebraska
Nov. 5 Northwestern at Nebraska
Nov. 12 Nebraska at Penn State
Nov. 19 Nebraska at Michigan
Nov. 26 Iowa at Nebraska

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