Nebraska Football: Choose optimism before the Huskers’ first game

Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports
Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports /

Congratulations, Nebraska football fans, you made it through another offseason.  That was your goal, right?  Football season has always been something Huskers fans look forward to and enjoy.  It seems the last few seasons have discouraged a large amount of the fanbase. For some fans, Nebraska Football has become more like a bad movie you watch over and over; hoping for a different ending but always coming away disappointed.

I wrote last year in a preview article for the Illinois game that it was the most important game of the season because it would set the tone for the rest of the year.  I definitely wasn’t the only one saying that but we all saw how the season turned out.  Many go back to that first game and wonder what may have been different if the Cornhuskers could have started off 1-0.  Maybe the confidence boost of being undefeated going into Norman would have been enough to pull off the first big win of the Frost era and start a long winning streak we haven’t seen in years.

But I digress.  Let’s talk about this year.

There are many questions we hope to have answered tomorrow, specifically on the offensive side of the ball, like “what’s it even going to look like?”  Mark Whipple brings in his pass-heavy attack combined with a lot of new faces.

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New players to look out for are most notably Quarterback: Casey Thompson, Receiver: Trey Palmer, and Running Back: Anthony Grant.  Expect to see some other new faces as well but if those 3 live up to the hype we’ve heard in the offseason, it should be a good day for Big Red.

In case you missed it, WR coach Mickey Joseph revealed who would be in his top 6 WR rotation on 93.7 The Ticket and it’s missing a name that will surprise most fans.  Joseph listed Trey Palmer, Marcus Washington, and Alante Brown as essentially the starters and continued on to say that Brody Belt, Oliver Martin, and Isaiah Garcia-Castaneda would be their backups at the 3 different positions.  He then mentions Wyatt Liewer’s name as well.

No Omar Manning?  Obviously Joseph knows what he’s doing but it does seem odd that an athletic freak like Manning wouldn’t at least crack the rotation.  However, Manning did have trouble getting playing time when he first arrived in Lincoln due to a lack of preparation and some injuries.

Lastly, on the offensive side of the ball, I think everyone wants to know how much the run game will be involved.  It looks like the running back rotation is also set with Anthony Grant, Gabe Ervin Jr., Jacquez Yant, and Rahmir Johnson playing a hybrid role.  Don’t be surprised to see Freshman Ajay Allen in the mix as well.  I’m expecting the majority of the plays for the Nebraska football team to be through the air Saturday but who knows, maybe if we’re lucky Whipple will throw in a Fullback Dive.

Nebraska Football has another conference opponent to face in Week 0 and I would say that it is again the most important game on the schedule.

If it is again a loss for the Huskers and they start 0-1, could they turn it around and still have a season fans are starving for?  Anything’s possible, but I think we’d all agree it’s not likely.

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A 1-0 start doesn’t guarantee anything but it allows some room to breathe before putting your back totally against the wall.  Momentum means everything in the college game and it’s important the Huskers create some early.  Having a top 10 ranked Oklahoma team coming into Lincoln sounds slightly more appealing when you’re 3-0.

So as you count down the hours, go ahead and finish off that last glass of offseason kool-aid.  You made it through the offseason and as of right now, the good guys are undefeated until further notice.  The possibilities are endless for Nebraska football fans. Choose optimism.