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The “Most Outstanding 3-9 Team” award goes to the 2021 Nebraska Cornhuskers.
There is no doubt that last season had to be the worst roller coaster ride for Scott Frost and his Cornhusker team.
Losing eight of your nine games by only one score had to kill morale and confidence.
Things do not look promising in Lincoln.
The fan base is underwhelmed and is starting to clamor for a new coach. Everyone, including Frost, feels like this season is a make-or-break year.
With Spring ball in effect, this is the perfect time to right the ship and get things moving in the right direction.
Here are three storylines that Nebraska fans should keep an eye on…
The University of Texas transfer QB was a highly sought-after recruit this offseason.
Don’t let Thompson’s record at Texas fool you. He was incredibly efficient, recording the following stats as a starter: 2,113 yards passing, 24 touchdowns, and 9 interceptions.
Thompson will be an upgrade to the QB spot.
It’ll be interesting to see if the addition of Mark Whipple’s scheme can take Thompson from good to great. Whipple took former Pitt QB Kenny Pickett from a late-round pick to a potential first-rounder in one offseason.
If Thompson can gather a firm grasp of the offense, this will be a massive boost for the upcoming season.
The Huskers were one of the worst teams in the trenches last season. Insert in new offensive line coach Donovan Raiola from the Chicago Bears.
Nebraska was an abysmal 80th in the country in sacks allowed. While also being 45th in rushing and 27th in passing.
Upon hiring, Raiola quickly hit the portal and brought in transfers Kevin Williams and Hunter Anthony.
Williams comes to Nebraska with two years of eligibility and will play guard. He brings size at 6’5 320 lbs.
Anthony started at Oklahoma State, and he brings an array of experience alongside his large frame. Anthony is 6’7 320 lbs and will protect new quarterback Casey Thompson’s blindside at left tackle.
With three of your starters returning and the addition of Williams and Anthony, this is undoubtedly a front five who can make the leap from bad to good.
If the Huskers can leave spring with a set starter rotation, this could be a unit that could provide stability in the trenches come fall.
Who Steps Up On Defense?
Although the Huskers are replacing seven starters, you can expect the blackshirt defense to be just as stout.
Nickelback Chris Kolarevic and defensive back Tommi Hill are two names to watch.
Kolarevic, a former linebacker, made the transition to Nickelback this spring. With JoJo Domann departing for the NFL, Kolarevic is the early favorite to replace him. Nebraska hopes he can provide a continuity that fills a significant hole for the defense.
Hill is the most intriguing player coming into spring. After a promising freshman season at Arizona State last year, he opted to transfer to Nebraska. Hill comes in with experience as well as versatility.
With three out of the four slots in the secondary open, I expect Hill to play a significant role this upcoming season.
Nebraska’s Spring Game will be on April 9th at Memorial Stadium.
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