Gabbert Bites the Curb: NU V.S. Mizzou Post-game Analysis

Posted: November 1, 2010 in Sports
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Nebraska Cornhuskers came into last Saturday’s game desperately in need of bi-polar medication.  The manic, road Huskers had played like complete beasts, racking up tons of points, yardage, and — save for what I believe will be proven as an aberration against Oklahoma State– good defensive performances.  The depressive, home Huskers, struggled against weak opponents at times and thoroughly botched what should have been a convincing win against an inferior team in Texas.

Nebraska popped Gabbert twice and called Dr. Osborne in the morning.

Here are some things that stood out to me from Saturday’s big win:

Roy Treats Missouri Defense Like Tricks, Treats Them to Backhand Slap and An Unhappy Helu-ween

A very long, very corny observation.  But, damn people, did you see Roy?  To say that he shredded Mizzou’s defense is like saying Godzilla “ruffled some feathers” in Tokyo.  An atomic bomb couldn’t have had a more devastating effect on a good defense.  Allegedly, good, I should say.  Helu had 3 touchdown runs, each displaying a burst of out-and-out speed that many Husker fans didn’t know he truly had, that all went for 53+ yards.

From the first carry, a 66 yard explosion that left Missouri defenders watching Helu breeze by from where they had been planted on their Tiger-asses, it was Helu’s day.  Even late in the game, with a game plan that consisted entirely of “Roy up the Middle,” “Roy to the left,” and “Roy wherever the hell he wants it,” Helu was still churning out 4 and 6 yards per carry. 

He finished the day as Nebraska’s all time, single-game rushing leader.  His performance was like nothing I’ve ever seen.  The entire Missouri offense only outgained Helu by roughly 33 yards.  After his 53 yard run to, ultimately, break Missouri’s back in the 3rd quarter I very nearly punched a hole in my T.V. screen with joy.  As I was leaping up and down in my work’s lobby like a madman, I even had a mini-debate as to how quickly I could throw together a “Roy Helu Homage” costume for Halloween.

Ciante Evans: Baptized By Fire

I was horrified when Alfonzo Dennard went out of the game with a concussion.  With Missouri’s bevy of skilled receivers and a pass-until-your-arm-falls-off approach, I felt certain that losing Dennard was a massive blow for our team.  However, true freshman Ciante Evans came into the game and, somehow, our defense barely missed a step.

Evans, who’d seen only limited game time up until this point, played more like a heady veteran than the English 101, intro-to-everything, frosh that he is.  Admitting to “being nervous until the 3rd quarter,” Evans had an amazing pass breakup that saved a touchdown and was a key player in the goal line stand that kept out Blaine Gabbert’s attempted QB sneak from the millimeter line.

Evans played a critical role in the secondary’s stellar performance and gave Missouri’s offensive coordinators a big middle finger salute despite their attempts to purposely throw at him.  Evans is just more proof that their shirts may be Black, but the defense has a bright future.

Prince Bounces Back

Senior DB Prince Amukamara has come into the season with a large amount of hype.  For the most part, he’s played up to the level of praise and pre-season awards that were piled at his feet.  Against Oklahoma State, however, Amukamara seemed to have his first off game.  Or maybe Cowboy receiver Justin Blackmon is really that good.  Whatever the reason, my supreme confidence in Prince wasn’t left shaken so much as it was left stirred.

In the Missouri game, Prince’s performance was outstanding.  He led the secondary in a performance that was nothing short of spectacular.  Rushing only 3 defensive lineman for a majority of the game, Gabbert had a decent amount of time to throw the ball.  He’d drop back, check his Facebook account, tweet about how stoked he was to continue growing his mullet, get punched in the face by his own fans. . .again, and look downfield and there would still be no one open.

The Nebraska secondary seems intent on leaving their road to wins littered with the bloated, picked over, carcasses of quarterbacks’ Heisman campaigns.  Gabbert came into the game a bona-fide NFL prospect and, after Prince and Co. got a hold of him, he left the game looking merely like a dude with a chick’s haircut.

In all

It goes without saying that this was a big win for the Huskers.  They now firmly control their own destiny in their hunt for a Big 12 North title.  While Taylor Martinez’s injury severely hurts the team’s offense, he should have time to recover as the Huskers play a series of games that are winnable even without their stellar freshman QB.

Zac Lee, a lightning rod of criticism last year has won over many of the Nebraska fans with his unselfish attitude and ability to step into difficult situations with alacrity.

We finally had a good game at home.  Which is unusual for this season.  And Bo didn’t give a damn about discussing with the media what he did differently.  Which is pretty much par for the course.

Where the Huskers go from here?  That’s up to them.  They play consistent, hard-nosed football and we should be fine, even without Martinez for a few games (worst case scenario).  With destiny in our hands, Gabbert’s teeth-marks on our helmets, and a #7 ranking in the BCS?  The season looks to be back on track.

FIN

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Comments
  1. Sue Tolles says:

    where do the Huskers go from here?? To Dallas to take the Big 12. That was a FUN game to watch.

  2. madhat says:

    Well done, NU, and well written. Kudos to both.

  3. Frustrated yet Dedicated says:

    Wonderful article for a wonderful game. of course being a husker fan my expectation for the huskers is to take #1 in the BCS where i think that they belong. when it comes to undefeated season the huskers have been cheated out of theirs this year. The Texas game might has well have been the in the Sundays comics then in the front page of the spots section. not only were the refs confused at best when it comes to their calls, but to me it felt like the passes were either not caught, or called incomplete (incorrectly). my frustration when it comes to Texas can only be matched by my undivided love for whip cream straight from the can (which is a big deal for me). now i have convinced myself that UT is simply getting beat by every Mediocre team that puts up even a fraction of a fight just to make us look worse. but in the end the statistics never lie, and Texas has been beat by Iowa State and UCLA who were both beat by K-State (who we had no trouble with) and then Oklahoma who took a pounding from Mizzou (which we all know the outcome of that game against us) and now Baylor? Please Texas, we get your point, now finish your mid franchise crisis and stop losing, because your not just making UT look worse. With every loss Nebraska looks a little worse too.

  4. Ron Tedwater says:

    Great work keep it coming

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