10 things we learned from the Nebraska Spring Game



1. After Martínez, the QB race is open.

The fans saw the starting quarterback a little more time. Adrian Martinez of what some expected, since he played the first five units for the Red team for a total of 23 snapshots.

However, after he retired from the game, that was when the real competition of quarterbacks began. Bunch started the first five units for the white squadron, and he, Noah Vedral, Y Luke McCaffrey Finished the game.

While Bunch had the start against Martinez, it was Vedral and McCaffrey who saw more success in their opportunities. Coach Scott Frost he said in his post-match interview that Vedral would be No. 2 field marshal if NU had to play a game tomorrow, but added that the battle behind Martinez was about to end.

"The other three did some good things," said Frost. "I made a couple of mistakes here and there, and there's a learning curve there, but I feel good about that room in general, we'll let the competition remain open throughout the fall."

2. Mission accomplished: Huskers stay healthy until spring.

Apart from a brief scare when the cornerback Dicaprio Bootle briefly suffered an apparent injury to his right leg in the second quarter (he got up and left on his own), Nebraska achieved his biggest goal of the day by avoiding any noticeable injury.

There is a reason why Frost mentioned that during his opening response after the game, as his most pressing concern for the Spring Game was to find the balance to organize a good show for the 85,000 fans at the Memorial Stadium and at the same time Keep your boys healthy.

Apart from a few punches, bruises and minor setbacks, the Huskers managed to overcome the spring ball relatively unharmed and, for Frost, that was as important as a victory.

"My first thought is that I am happy to have come out of the healthy spring," said Frost. "For the most part, we did not have any major problems, I think we came out pretty healthy today."

3. Crowned defense of an impressive pier.

The deck certainly piled up in favor of the Red team with almost all the first team players on their list, but both the Red and White defenders came to play on Saturday and finished a strong spring.

The red defense began with the first projected unit of Darrion Daniels, Ben StilleY Carlos Davis in the defensive line; Mohamed Barry, Collin Miller, Alex DavisY JoJo Domann to the linebacker and Bootle, Lamar Jackson, Marquel dismukeY Deontai Williams in high school.

That group stifled the White offensive all day, keeping it just 14 of 34 pbades for 155 yards, one pick and four sacks. To take away Matt Masker & # 39; s 55-yard scoring bomb for Wyatt Liewer, the red defense would have kept the white in less than 200 total yards and zero touchdowns.

The leap the defense made since the end of last season was one of the main stories of spring, and the spring game on Saturday gave a good look at why.

"We are really good, like, really good," said Daniels. "The teams that I played in that were really good had a lot of leaders in older men, but in this defense, there is leadership everywhere." We have many young guys blaming many older men and vice versa. I feel that there is a very good balance of everyone keeping everyone right. "

4. Pickering has come a long way.

Last season there was a time when the Nebraska kick game, for the first time in years, seemed to be on very unstable ground. Pickering sweeper, then a true freshman, missed four of his first eight field goals to start the year.

But the Birmingham, Alabama native turned his season around by making his last 10 attempts. On Saturday, Pickering was as calm and calm as ever, drilling his three field goals of 27, 33 and 45 yards and hit the four extra points.

Nebraska had been spoiled a bit with its series of high-level kickers over the years, so for Pickering to improve his game the way he has since last November, it will provide some comfort in the third element .

5. McCaffrey showed his potential.

He may still have to climb a steep hill before being ready to press for a starting job, but McCaffrey showed why the Nebraska coaching staff is so excited about his potential.

The real freshman just completed three of his 13 pbades while playing with the Red and White offenses, but he also made some plays that caused some eyebrows on Saturday. McCaffrey demonstrated the ability to improvise out of pocket and gain time with his feet, and also showed his dynamic speed as a runner.

The former three-star did not score a touchdown and threw an interception, but both areas were also the fault of his receivers. His selection came in a deviation from the hands of his intended target, and he and a potential touchdown pbad fell into the end zone.

"I think it's a well-composed child that will be able to handle it," said Martinez de McCaffrey. "The first time you're in front of 90,000 there's not much I can prepare you, but I think it did a good job, I really did it." He made some really good pitches, some good plays and controlled what he could. I think he did a good job out there. "

6. Daniels was as advertised

The arrival of Daniels as a transfer of graduates from Oklahoma State was one of the arguments of the spring, and his unofficial debut as Husker did not disappoint.

Daniels only had three tackles and a half tackle per loss on the day, but his presence in the middle of the top defensive line of the NU was evident from the opening moment.

He combined in a TFL and then pushed his blocker in the quarterback to help cause an incomplete shutout in the Reds' first defensive series, and helped his team keep the White squad only 81 rushing yards on 25 carries. .

The fun part is imagining how good Daniels could be with a few more months of learning the Nebraska scheme under his belt.

"I know this spring I was really trying to get my position as a defensive lineman," Daniels said. "I just try to minimize my plays and I always tell them to look at the whole scheme of the defense, to try to understand the coverage and the way the linebackers are doing it." So, I feel that it's about understanding the entire defense instead of just the D line. "

7. Davis has made some big profits.

Alex Davis He always seemed to have the necessary tools to be an impact player in the Nebraska defense, but he never seemed comfortable enough to maximize his skill on game day.

Reports throughout the spring indicated that something had finally clicked with the highest 6-foot-5, 255 pounds, and gave many reasons to believe it on Saturday. Davis was credited with two sacks of the game and was denied an interception on the field when Bunch was discarded in a handbag.

The native of Riviera Beach, Florida, was the starting linebacker for the red team, and if he continues with his current game, he will probably be in the first unit in September.

8. Punting, return games left a lot to be desired

Perhaps the most disturbing part of the spring game was the Nebraska game, as there was little consistency in any of the three punters.

Higher Isaac Armstrong, who badumed the initial tasks last season, averaged a modest 37.5 yards on his four punts and did not place any inside the 20-yard line. Caleb Lightbourn, who lost his job to Armstrong, did little to defend his case by hitting three times for an average of only 29.3 yards.

Walk on Jackson Walker they obtained the majority of the work for the white team, publishing the best average of the day (39.2) in four punts, setting two within the 20.

In the return game, there was no kickoff in the Saturday's squad training session. In addition, given the number of key players who were left out of the spring game, many of the contenders for the best punt return job were not available to play.

As a result, the cornerback Cam taylor He handled all the duties of punt return, and just caught the four points on the day.

9. Bradley, Belt took advantage of his opportunities.

Because of Nebraska's shortage of running deep this spring, to guys like Jaylin Bradley Y Brody belt I had golden opportunities to shine in the red-white game.

Although none of the two put on mind-blowing numbers, both had solid days and led their respective Red and White teams in the race. Bradley, one of the only two scholarship runners available for the game, ran 12 times for a total of 57 yards, including the publication of the longest run of the day with 18 yards.

Belt, who emerged as a beautiful spring story with his consistent game in practice, took the ball 13 times in his highest game for 53 yards, and had a touchdown on the first drive, denied by a penalty.

The hall will change dramatically this fall, when some new faces arrive on campus, but at least, both Bradley and Belt made their case in the summer.

10. Once again, a hat tip for Husker fans.

What makes the Spring Game such a special event is what it means to the Nebraska fan base.

For coaches and players, it's a fun experience, but in the grand scheme of things it's just one of 15 spring practices. For the fan base, however, it is one of the highlights of the offseason, and the 85,946 fans who entered the Memorial Stadium made another Saturday Red-White Game to remember.

"It was a bit exceeded (my expectations)," said Daniels. "It was probably most of the fans I've seen in a stadium all the time in college, and it's just a spring game, I can only imagine what it would be like for a real game."


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