Friday Forecast: Can Nebraska Get the Offense Back on Track vs. Purdue?
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Friday Forecast: Can Nebraska Get the Offense Back on Track vs. Purdue?

November 01, 2019

Friday Forecast is back after a year-long hiatus last season. The Hail Varsity staff is picking the Husker game and four of the best non-Nebraska games each week. 

Here's how everyone’s doing against the spread after nine weeks of picks.

  • Brandon Vogel: 26-27
  • Erin Sorensen: 28-25
  • Greg Smith: 22-31
  • Jacob Padilla: 27-26
  • Derek Peterson: 24-29

Nebraska at Purdue (NEB –4.0, O/U 58.0) 

Brandon Vogel: Nebraska showed some promise on offense, for the first time in a month, against Indiana. If it can’t maintain that against a Purdue defense that has struggled—particularly against the run—then a strong close to this season probably just isn’t in the cards. The stakes feel pretty big here for the Huskers, and while I’m gun-shy about pretending I know how they’ll respond to that at this point, I also think some of Nebraska’s advantages in this game are pretty big. PICK: Nebraska 38, Purdue 27 

Erin Sorensen: I think Nebraska is the better team in this matchup. The Huskers should be, at least, but it feels like a bit of a tossup. I think the outcome has a lot to do with the status and availability of Adrian Martinez for Nebraska and Rondale Moore for Purdue. It seems like Moore may actually be out, which gives me a little more faith in a Husker win. I’m going to take Nebraska to win and cover, but I don’t feel great about it. PICK: Nebraska 30, Purdue 24 

Greg Smith: Once again I don’t know what to do with Nebraska. They are the healthier team. They are the better team. I don’t know if Nebraska is mentally ready to go on the road and win another game. If Adrian Martinez plays (which he wants to) it’s a huge boost for the Huskers. PICK: Nebraska 35, Purdue 31 

Jacob Padilla: Nebraska needs to win this game, and it can win this game––if it doesn’t make the catastrophic mistakes. Indiana is a better team than Purdue, and the Huskers should have won that game as well. I’m a little hesitant about the pass defense after last week, but just because Purdue throws the ball a lot doesn’t mean it’s good at it. The Blackshirts find a way to be solid most of the game and the offense holds onto the ball. PICK: Nebraska 31, Purdue 21 

Derek Peterson: Nebraska figured some—emphasis on some—stuff out on offense against Indiana. Now it gets to go against a Purdue offense that can’t run the ball and will be missing its top two offensive threats. There should be some pressure taken off the Husker offense and I think that’s important. Nebraska should be able to play free in spite of how important this game is. I think there will be a lot of points here, and Nebraska has the better quarterback. PICK: Nebraska 42, Purdue 38 

No. 8 Georgia vs. No 6 Florida (UGA –6.5, O/U 45.0) 

BV: Don’t be afraid of tempo, Georgia. Stop lowering your own ceiling on offense. I’m guessing this game might be the one where the Dawgs finally loosen the reins a little bit, and it will make all the difference. PICK: Georgia 28, Florida 17 

ES: The spread favored Georgia by four at one point, and I think that felt like a safer bet for the Bulldogs to cover. Now that it’s 6.5? No way. PICK: Georgia 24, Florida 20 

GS: This will be a fun if you like defense type of game. I’ve liked Florida most of the season, but I think Georgia finds a way to win a close one. PICK: Georgia 21, Florida 17 

JP: I think Georgia is the better team here, and Kirby Smart needs to give Jake Fromm a chance to air it out a little more. Florida’s stout run defense has slipped the last two weeks and I have to believe shutting down D’Andre Swift is first, second and third on the list of priorities in Florida’s game plan. With that being the case, Fromm should have some chances to win this game with his arm. PICK: Georgia 28, Florida 21 

DP: If we all think Georgia could find some success throwing against the Gator defense, I wonder what Kirby Smart has cooked up. Rivalry games cause you to throw out context; who has the better combination of defense and quarterback? That’s Georgia. PICK: Georgia 34, Florida 23 

No. 9 Utah at Washington (UTAH –3.0, O/U 48.0) 

BV: Utah’s playing at a high level of late, but Washington is capable of playing the type of close-quarters game the Utes prefer. The Pac-12 has been written off as a playoff contender, but not so fast. Maybe. Utah’s still got a shot, as does Oregon, but both will need big road wins this week. I think the Utes will still be standing come Sunday. PICK: Utah 31, Washington 24 

ES: Washington comes into this matchup after a bye week. The Huskies have also won the last four in this series. I know Utah’s dominant, but this feels like the right setup for Washington. PICK: Washington 24, Utah 20 

GS: This Utah team is salty. I think they make a big statement on the road. PICK: Utah 31, Washington 10 

JP: I can’t really figure this Washington team out. I do know that Utah has a dominant defense and can run the heck out of the ball. I’ll fall back on what I'm confident in here and take the Utes. PICK: Utah 28, Washington 20 

DP: Utah has a bye next week and an outside shot at a CFP bid. That’s plenty motivation to stave off an upset-minded Washington team. PICK: Utah 28, Washington 24 

No. 15 SMU at No. 24 Memphis (MEM –6.0 O/U 72.0) 

BV: I’m delighted that ESPN/ABC showed some G5 love this week and made this the “marquee” game of the week by putting it in primetime and sending GameDay to Memphis. SMU’s been on a nice run, but Memphis has been kicking around the top of the G5 ranks for years now. PICK: Memphis 41, SMU 31 

ES: This game feels like a tossup, so I’m going to take SMU outright. I read somewhere that taking SMU outright wasn’t a smart pick. Living on the edge, I guess. PICK: SMU 34, Memphis 28 

GS: SMU has to be one of the surprises of the year, right? Sonny Dykes has them playing much better than anticipated this soon. It won’t be easy to win this on the road. Give me the overs here. PICK: Memphis 48, SMU 45  

JP: Yeah, I’ll be shocked if his doesn’t hit the over. SMU has made it through the season unscathed so far, but Memphis is probably the best team it will play all season (depending on how you feel about an up-and-down TCU squad). Give me the Tigers in a shootout. PICK: Memphis 45, SMU 38 

DP: I’m a big Mike Norvell fan but pony up. PICK: SMU 48, Memphis 45 

Army at Air Force (AF –16.0, O/U 45.5) 

BV: Double triple option! Army has lost its fumbles magic, but 16 points is a lot in a game against an option team. Stack another option team on top of that and this game might only have 16 possessions between the two teams. Air Force is good, but covering 16 would require extreme efficiency on both sides (or some breaks). PICK: Air Force 24, Army 14 

ES: Those 16 points are wild. PICK: Air Force 21, Army 10 

GS: I just can’t go with 16 points. That’s a lot in a game like this. I like the home team but it’ll be closer than 16. PICK: Air Force 28, Army 17 

JP: Army is really struggling right now. It’s lost four straight and five total this season. But all five of those losses have come by less than 10 points and 16 is a big number. PICK: Air Force 31, Army 21 

DP: Each team will get one possession per quarter. PICK: Air Force 24, Army 7 

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