Nebraska Football Tailgate Talk: Halloween party with Purdue

LINCOLN, NEBRASKA - SEPTEMBER 23: General view of the stadium during the game between the Nebraska Cornhuskers and the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs at Memorial Stadium on September 23, 2023 in Lincoln, Nebraska. (Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images)
LINCOLN, NEBRASKA - SEPTEMBER 23: General view of the stadium during the game between the Nebraska Cornhuskers and the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs at Memorial Stadium on September 23, 2023 in Lincoln, Nebraska. (Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images) /

Purdue is facing off against the Nebraska football team in Memorial Stadium this Saturday so it’s time for some treats and some great treats.

Nebraska football plays against the Purdue Boilermakers at 2:30 on FS1. It’s going to be a wet and cold Saturday in Lincoln with a rain/snow mix that is slated to start around noon. It’s fitting it’s Halloween weekend as Nebraska’s offense will need to be sewn together with the remaining healthy pieces in such a way that would make even Dr. Frankenstein jealous!

In case you didn’t know, there were several Huskers who left the North stadium bandaged up like a Mummy last Saturday. Out for the season are Ethan Piper and Turner Corcoran. Additionally on the O-line, Cornhusker Nouredin Nouili injured his foot and is also benched a couple of weeks.

The massacre didn’t stop there. From a Wide Receiver room that has more shadows than players, Billy Kemp now has a strained MCL and is out for a few weeks. Look for Husker receiver Jaidyn Doss to step into his role.

At least center Ben Scott was practicing this week. Look for redshirt freshman Justin Evans-Jenkins (who looked solid in the backup role Saturday) and sophomore Henry Lutovsky to replace Piper and Corcoran at the guard positions. O line veteran Teddy Prochazka will have to step up as tackle on the left side.

If you’re looking for a light at the end of the Nebraska football injury tunnel (hoping it’s not another train) the good news is that the defense has Cam Lenhardt (DE) and Nick Henrich (LB) back in the lineup. Giving Big Red a Howling good chance at a win on Saturday are Isaac Gifford (LB), Ty Robinson and Nash Hutmacher (D-Line). Those big, nasty goblins are making plays — game-saving plays. It wasn’t a pretty win. It was ugly. But it was still a win.

Time to look at the villians on the other side. Purdue, behind new coach and former Illinois co-defensive coordinator, Ryan Walters has a good D-Line and they’re gonna get after our quarterback.  Word from my insider is that the Boilermaker Defense communicates well too. “They play disciplined, have great leverage, and like to hit you” were his exact words. Pour in a little cold weather and that gameplan is going to be as painful as the 5th remake of Nightmare on Elm Street for the Cornhuskers if they can’t keep ahold of the ball.

Purdue is also coming off a bye week and will steam into to town having won 4 out of the last 5 games against the Huskers. Did I mention head coach Ryan Walters hates Nebraska because he has Colorado roots? He hates the sea of Red. I hope he hates them more after Nebraska football beats them on Saturday. For more on that, click here.

Boilermakers have two really good linebackers Kydran Jenkins and Nic Scourton. Jenkins is 2nd in solo sacks on the team and Scourton has 4.5 of his own. Devin Mockobee is the leading rusher. He’s ranked 5th among Big Ten running backs and is coming off his best game last week having gained 110 yards on 18 carries against Ohio State. He was all over the gridiron last year against Nebraska. I’m casting a witching spell to keep that from happening this week. Well, me and Huskers defensive Wizard Tony White.

Purdue boasts 1180 total yards rushing and 1625 passing yards. They aren’t perfect and have 13 fumbles, but lost only 5. Hudson Card is the QB to shut down with 7 touchdowns already on the year. Deon Burks and TJ Sheffeld are the best receivers with 418 and 308 yards respectively. Imagine having receivers with that kind of stats….or just experienced receivers. Except for Malachi Coleman’s huge catch last week, that receiver room has been as silent as a graveyard.

Halloween weekend is always my favorite tailgate. So many tasty treats. One of my favorite candies as a kid was that little root beer barrel. So much flavor packed in a tiny package. (Maybe there is an NIL deal for Billy Kemp in there.) Anyway, I found a root beer flavored liquor. It’s got a high alcohol content so use only a 1/2 cup, and 1 1/4 cups water to a small package of orange jello or it won’t set up.

Huskers are going to need a bewitching performance Saturday with their ghost of a roster and the bone chilling weather. They are favored by 2.5 points. Home field advantage is that formula. Tag me on your Twitter photos at @kelian_NE. The weather should keep things moving slowly and the Huskers defense may get the game ball for this one. Dress in waterproof layers, graciously thank your tailgate hosts, and as always, root on Nebraska football. GO BIG RED!