Taking a look at the game against Nebraska from the standpoint of a Husker, this is what I'd be looking for from my team:
- Run the ball: Sure SC has a pretty strong D-line, but the linebackers are prone to over-pursuing. With an average running back, that might not get you much, but Marlon Lucky isn't an average running back. If Lucky can break a few long runs, it helps open up opportunities to pass as well.
- Don't be afraid to pass: SC's secondary isn't great across the board, and Pinkard's out with a torn ACL. Buy Keller some time, and he should be able to make some passes. Plus Lucky can take a short pass and make it into a long reception.
- Consistency: the Huskers were strong against the rush and weaker against the pass - relatively speaking - before reversing it against Wake. If I had to focus on something, it would be stuffing the run and forcing Booty into as many mental errors as possible. Worked for a certain team in powder blue, after all.
If I were a Husker, this is what I would be worried about:
- What happens if SC does stuff the run and force Nebraska to the air? Or, what if playing the percentage game fails and Nebraska gets behind? Because if you need either consistency or points in a hurry...
- Keller hasn't been firing on all cylinders yet. He could run amok against the SC secondary, or he could be throwing gifts to them all day. He might even do both in the same series. You just don't know.
- Playing into SC's hands: stuffing the run and counting on the strength of the secondary hasn't worked all that well for Michigan in recent Rose Bowls.
What's the community view on this? What would you recommend if you were a Husker? If that's too much football empathy, then what would you think that SC should do to win this game?