So now we know why Bo has been preaching patience and been sticking to his "lot of work to do" mantra. The optimism in all of us took a big hit this past weekend, mine especially. Sure, the final score didn't look too bad, and we battled back numerous times from two-score deficits, but the fact of the matter is, when we needed it the most, we were unable to stop the Hokies, especially Tyrod Taylor. My thoughts from Saturday's game:
-FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, SOMEONE TEACH LARRY ASANTE TO TACKLE OR GET HIM THE F#@* OUT OF THERE! I think his inability to tackle has nearly driven me to the point of getting gray hairs. How someone can be a senior in college and still be unable to properly execute a tackle is dumbfounding. Furthermore, why is it that no one has taken his job yet? I know our defensive recruiting wasn't stellar under Callahan, but you're telling me that nobody can play safety? Nobody can cover a deep third or half and still tackle? I remember when he came in as a ballyhooed JUCO transfer, I was absolutely giddy. Now he's driving me toward alcoholism. Seriously, he is garbage personified, at least on the football field. In fact, here's an acronym for his last name: Absolutely Spectacular At Not Tackling Everytime. I don't care if the last word isn't supposed to be a compound word, the situation warrants it.
- Not only do I have to stick my foot in my mouth over the pre-game prediction, I also have to apologize to Nate Swift, who proved me wrong by taking a punt to the house when we desperately needed it. For a long time on here, I've bitched and moaned about us having him back there, mainly because I always was under the impression that it was akin to having Steve Largent return punts. When you're a receiver, crisp route running and sure hands make up for a lot of shortcomings. But punt returns? You gotta have speed, and I underestimated him. Is he going to have anyone bringing up Tim Dwight comparisons anytime soon? No. But I give him credit that was one hell of a play when his team needed it dearly. Though I do blame him for convincing me to stay at the bar and spend 30 more dollars only to watch us blow it anyway. But you know what? It was worth it seeing him take it the distance.
- I'm just going to keep it going with my "I-suck-at-predictions" theme, and point out that once again our running game cost us a victory. I really thought that our line had gelled and that we'd come out and run it at least somewhat effectively against the Hokies. 25 carries and 55 yards later, I'm beginning to wonder what the hell everyone was fawning over during fall camp. Lucky, a guy I thought would make a statement this season, once again looked hesitant and indecisive. If I have to watch one more carry where he runs into the back of one of his lineman and rides him for 3 yards before falling down, I'm going to vomit. Castille, someone who could have been used to beat their linebackers into submission, had 3 carries for 8 yards. It has become apparent to most Husker fans that the most dangerous weapon in our backfield is Roy Helu, and the staff has to find a way to get him into the game more.
- Where was a spy on Taylor? He broke contain at will, and then there was nobody attempting to tackle him until he was a good 5 or 6 yards past the line of scrimmage every time. What made it even worse is that we usually missed that first tackle.
-Nice work by the defense holding them to field goals on 4 consecutive possessions, but why is it that we only start toughening up when the opposing team gets inside the 30? I would love to see a couple 3-and-outs, if only to prove that it can be done by this unit. Seeing any opposing player in the open field is one of the most terrifying things I deal with on a weekly basis. Every time there's a punt or a pass completed in space, it's almost as if you can feel Memorial Stadium collectively gasp with fear, like they know that a big play is imminent. That'll happen when you watch your team whiff on tackles like a damn 7th-grade B team on a regular basis.
- The late-hit call on Suh that changed the game was correct but a reach in that situation. That ref took the game out of the players hands and decided it himself, and I don't think that should happen in a potentially game-changing scenario like that. If it was a blatantly obvious call, then sure. But Suh was a heartbeat late, and I think to a certain extent you let them play there. Maybe it's just me stubbornly holding onto the thought that we would have stopped them and won the game instead of giving up the game winning TD a few plays later, but I still say you let them play there unless it's flagrant (though I'll admit it's much easier to say that then call it in a split second like refs actually have to).
- The Hokies re-affirmed my belief that they are a bunch of showboating prima-donnas. The constant jawing, the celebrating, it all was there. Not as bad as years past, but still present nonetheless.
-The really scary thought: If this is what happen against Virginia Tech, what is going to happen against Mizzou and Tech? Absolutely terrifying to think about. We are most likely looking at a three game losing streak here (and yes, I'm hoping that by predicting it, I'll be proven wrong and the Huskers will win at least one of the next two).
Picture taken by William Lauer/Lincoln Journal Star