Five Things We Learned From The South Dakota State Game:
1) Taylor Martinez is not the only play-maker at quarterback: Tommy Armstrong Jr. and Ron Kellogg III were phenomenal on Saturday. They both made plays with their arms and Armstrong showed the ability to scramble and run when necessary. While everyone always loves the backup, these two showed that Taylor Martinez is not the only option at quarterback this year.
2) The defense is still a mile away from where they need to be: The defense did bring heat to the Jackrabbits backfield, but they still can’t stop the run on a consistent basis. Zach Zenner ran free on the Huskers for three quarters of play, and the Nebraska Cornhuskers were always a step behind him. The defense has two weeks to fix things before Illinois comes to Lincoln.
3) Stanley Jean Baptiste is lethal: He had already made a big impact in every game this season, but his pick against South Dakota State emphasizes just how lethal he can be. Don’t be surprised if opposing teams stop throwing to his side of the field. The former wide receiver has proven that he can still catch a football, especially if the opposing quarterback is throwing it.
4) The Huskers are still looking for a return game: Special teams have been anything but special in the punt return category. Breaking the occasional touchdown return could make the difference between a win or loss in Big Ten play. Nebraska needs to figure out the right combination of skill players to make things happen.
5) Tim Beck called his best offensive game of the season: It still wasn’t the perfect game offensively, but Beck did the best job of mixing up his play calling in 2013. Several players were involved in the offense, and the best players were the most effective. The offense was heavy on the run, but when Nebraska passed it was very effective.