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10 Snap Reactions to the Huskers 42-28 loss

Nebraska struck first against Purdue today but a variety of self induced errors and poor decision making led to the Huskers demise.

We go through our snap reactions in the Huskers 42-28 loss against Purdue.

5 Hot Takes – Bright Spots

Running Back Devine Ozigbo – Devine had 17 carries for 170 yards on the day with 2 touchdowns. That’s a healthy 10 yards per carry for Ozigbo and makes you wonder if Frost could of leaned more on the senior running back.

Defensive Back DiCaprio Bootle – Bootle had an early pass interference call that hurt the Blackshirts and Purdue continued to throw deep his way all day. Aside from the questionable penalty, the sophomore defensive back from Miami stepped up his game and defended several more deep balls successfully on the night. 

(Photo by John Peterson/Icon Sportswire)
Running back Devine Ozigbo -(Photo by John Peterson)

Offensive Line – Wait, what? That’s right, in the second half Purdue called off the heavy attack and the offensive line held its own all the way through the fourth quarter giving the offense a fighting chance to mount a comeback. They racked up another 253 yards rushing on the day mainly over the left side of the line.

Linebacker Mohamed Barry – Take one look at the Blackshirts game tape and Barry is sure to stand out and should be the level other defensive players aspire to play at.

Barry didn’t have a crazy stat line, racking up 11 total tackles and 1 tackle for a loss but he was everywhere today and did a great job of filling his gap against the run which led to several no gain or short gain plays. He also flashed athleticism running sideline to sideline.

Safety Aaron Williams – Williams continues to show why the Huskers are strong against the run coming up with 8 tackles on the day and showed off his motor the entire game.

5 Hot Takes – Not so hot stuff

Penalties, Penalties, Penalties – The Huskers had 11 penalties on the day with a big one coming in the fourth quarter on a 3rd and 20 situation the Huskers would like to have back.  Regardless of how you feel about the calls, the Huskers made a lot of boneheaded mistakes with 6 costly penalties that resulted in a free 1st down and 15 free yards.

End of story, those penalties hurt the Huskers today and came at timely moments during the game. The defense isn’t alone in them either with Jerald Foster picking up a personal foul early in the game. Dismuke may have had the worst one of the day that resulted in a 1-on-1 conversation with coach Frost after he got back to the sideline.

The Offensive Line – While they did a much better job with the limited Boilermaker pass rush in the second half, the first half they didn’t do much after the Huskers opening drive and struggled mightily with pressure.

Can we cut out the cut-blocks too? On their 15 yard line the offensive line cut block against a blitzing Purdue defense and cleared the way for a costly TFL.

Linebacker Dedrick Young – We’re not sure if the early Will Honas injury forced Young to play but its two games in a row where a poor effort filling his gap and tackling led to a big play.  For some reason, Young looks lost against the pass and struggles mightily against the run. 

The Huskers may be better suited giving Jacob Weinmaster or Collin Miller a shot next to Mohamed Barry at this point.

Rookie Mistakes from Martinez – Listen, Martinez is a good quarterback with a lot of room to grow but you can see when the Huskers get behind that he starts to force things a bit.  You love him for what he can do with his legs, but he needs to get his arm and mind to catch up when he’s throwing the ball.

Martinez ran out of bounds for a 7 yard rush on a terrible blocking job instead of throwing the ball away first half.  In the second half, Martinez threw off his back foot right to a Boilermaker for the only turnover of the day and a momentum killing turnover.

Martinez is good, don’t mistake this feedback for him being bad. But his true freshman decision making showed up at times today.

Special Teams Still not very Special – Overall the play of the special teams was better today than it has been in the past. Tackling and gaps were sound when they needed to be but penalties plagued them once more.

Penalties and a lack of blocking the middle of the field hurt the Huskers on punt returns. They need to find a way to slow down the other team’s defenders and give their return man a shot at making an actual return.

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