College Football

Path to Victory: Riley’s Last Game?

It’s been a ride, Husker fans. At times fun, at times exciting, at times more like you had too much cotton candy right before you went on the roller coaster. You knew deep down that it was going to be a bad idea but you figured, hey, why not go for it? It’ll be fine.

Narrator : It wasn’t.

In all likelihood, Friday’s match up against the Iowa Hawkeyes will be Mike Riley’s last as the head coach of the Husker football team. Three years isn’t a lot of time, I’ll be the first to admit it, for a head coach to instill his own culture into a football program. Especially one coming off of the issues that Nebraska had in 2014. Riley took over a divided team, a divided fan base and, most damning of all, a divided athletic department. Whatever you may think about Riley and his tenure at Nebraska, it all comes to an end on Friday evening.

But, wait, don’t we still have a game left? You know that we do. And it’s against Iowa. A team that, for some reason, was ranked as high as 20 this season despite being 6-5 overall and only 3-5 in the Big Ten (the same mark as Nebraska in conference play). So, how does Nebraska win against this…vaunted…Iowa football team? Follow the PtV.

Lee’n On Me

Tanner Lee has had a rocky season but, over the last two games, has looked like they QB we were promised in the offseason. Against Minnesota and Penn State, Lee was a combined 39 of 59 passing with 4 touchdowns and no interceptions. If I’m the coaches, I’m riding the hot hand. Iowa’s defense is better than Minnesota but you’d be hard-pressed to say they’re better than Penn State. Keep letting Lee do his thing.

Rotate Your Running Backs

Nebraska has had a running back problem. Over the last three seasons, RB coach Reggie Davis has tended to stick with one running back and one running back only unless injury forced him to make a move. Outside of the injured Tre Bryant, you don’t have an every down back on the roster right now. Understand this and use the strengths of the three guys you do have (Ozigbo – power, Wilbon – speed, Bradley – cutback) and get them all into the game. Keep Iowa’s defense on their heels and give yourself a chance.

You forgot this game had a trophy, didn’t you?

Live In the Moment

It’s over for this coaching staff. It’s sad, it may not be fair, but it is over after Friday. For the coaches: do what you do best and keep your players in the best position you can to win the game. For the seniors: show some pride in yourself and your legacy and fight Iowa for every yard. For the players who will be back: next year doesn’t matter yet. Stay focused on the game at hand, do your job and beat a rival who’s laughing you into the ground. Focus on what you can control and ignore everything else about Friday’s football game.

Three Stats

  • 31 – Yards left for wide receiver Stanley Morgan to eclipse the single-season receiving record of 942 yards.
  • 7.3 – Yards per carry for JD Spielman on the jet sweep.
  • 23 – TD passes for Iowa QB Nathan Stanley on the season.

Three Guarantees

  • A carry for senior running back Adam Taylor.
  • Stanley Morgan beating the receiving record but falling short of 1,000 yards on the season.
  • Applause for Mike Riley as he leaves Memorial Stadium one last time.

Predicition

Nebraska 30 – Iowa 33

 

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