Nebraska football mailbag: Is the offseason hype already out of control?
Have Nebraska football questions? We’ve got answers. Join us every Wednesday for the Land of 10 Nebraska mailbag to talk all things Huskers. This week, we discuss Nebraska’s offseason hype, quarterbacks and running backs on the roster, and more.
Do you sense the hype is out of control surrounding this new coaching staff? Nebraska won 4 games, has a new starting QB, and one of the toughest schedules in the nation next season. This team will struggle to be bowl eligible…..right?
— Nick (@Lionelll) April 3, 2018
Offseason hype is a tried-and-true tradition of many collegiate football programs. It’s thankfully not just a Nebraska thing, even if it sometimes it feels like it is.
As for Nebraska specifically, I wouldn’t say the hype is out of control yet. The open portion of Tuesday’s practice will definitely contribute to more hype, as it provided more eyeballs an opportunity to see what coach Scott Frost and his staff are working on with the team. It probably also doesn’t help the hype train when Frost calls it the “best day” of practice so far, but that should really be taken with a grain of salt.
For myself personally, I’ve long said 6-6 is my benchmark for 2018. This season’s schedule is tough, and that alone is going to wreak havoc. If Frost can get Nebraska to the six-win benchmark, you’re now bowl eligible. That’s a big win in my book.
I know the hype will continue to grow before September, and that’s to be expected with a new coach. Compounded with the fact that Frost is a former player and there are a lot of position battles this spring, it might get pretty out of control in the coming months. I’ll just take it as excitement, though. If there was no hype, it would mean there is complacency — and that feels like it might be worse.
From what you've seen, which QB & RB look most impressive?
— mocksaly (@mocksaly) April 3, 2018
I’m going to be fully transparent about the fact that I haven’t gotten to see the quarterbacks and running backs, because we haven’t had access to watch practice outside of the first 30 minutes on Tuesday. With that said, I’ll tell you who the most impressive quarterback and running back are from what I’ve heard.
Quarterback: Adrian Martinez, who I was told is as fast as advertised. I know I’ve shared my personal concern over starting a freshman who was out his senior season with a shoulder injury, but people are doing their best to change my opinion. Everything I’ve been told is that he looks impressive, and we got to see a little of that on Tuesday.
Running back: Greg Bell, who I’ve heard is very talented. Multiple people have now provided glowing reviews of the junior college transfer. He was out of practice on Tuesday, but Frost called it “nothing major.”
What kind of chance does Andrew Bunch actually have?
— Kurtis Gierhan (@kurtisgierhan13) April 3, 2018
I don’t think Andrew Bunch will ultimately end up as Nebraska’s starting quarterback, but I could see him making a case for the No. 2 or No. 3 spot on the depth chart. He received quite a bit of talk on Twitter following Tuesday’s practice, so I’d expect him to put up a good fight. He’ll make that room better, no matter what.
So whats up with Ben Miles? Is he transferring or practicing at a different position?
— Blessing Tran (@btran0524) April 3, 2018
I didn’t spot him at Tuesday’s practice, but I assume he’s practicing with the running backs. I haven’t heard anything about him transferring at this point, but we’ll see what happens. He’s a talented athlete though, and if he stays put at Nebraska, they’ll find a way to make good use of his skill set.
How’s the job search for the former staff going so far?
— K Beats (@IBeLionsBeats) April 3, 2018
Let’s first run down the list of those that have found new places to land:
- Former coach Mike Riley is at Oregon State as assistant head coach and tight ends coach
- Former defensive coordinator Bob Diaco is at Oklahoma as an defensive analyst
- Former cornerbacks coach Donte Williams is at Oregon as outside linebackers coach
- Former offensive line coach Mike Cavanaugh is at Syracuse as offensive line coach
- Former linebackers coach Trent Bray is at Oregon State as linebackers coach
- Former safeties coach Scott Booker is with the Tennessee Titans as a defensive assistant
- Former graduate assistant Tavita Thompson is at Central Michigan as tight ends coach
As for those we do not have an update on:
- Former offensive coordinator Danny Langsdorf
- Former running backs coach Reggie Davis
- Former wide receivers coach Keith Williams (although he has been working with former Nebraska athletes at Speedway Village in Lincoln)
- Former defensive line coach John Parrella
And Mark Banker, who preceded Diaco, is now the linebackers coach at the University of Hawaii.
So, it’s about half-and-half as far as who has and who has not found a new job post-Nebraska. It wouldn’t be surprising if some of the names on the second list found a landing spot this spring, though.
Are there other sports being practiced or played at The University of Nebraska?
— Nicholas (@Honyelll) April 3, 2018
Only football. (I sincerely hope the sarcasm of my response is apparent.)
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