The mailbag was a mixed bag this week. Some wanted to hear about Mike Riley's future, some wanted fantasy advice. Hail Varsity's Brandon Vogel, Greg Smith, Jacob Padilla and Derek Peterson answered them all.
If UCF gets to CFB playoff will that end some of the Frost hate? Also, when did being a “Nebraska guy” become a negative? (@Simba_Simms)
GS: Who exactly is hating Scott Frost? If I didn’t know any better, he already has a statue and the field named after him with the way people are pining for him. The negative connotation with “Nebraska guy” comes from the battle to push the program forward versus thinking the only way to do things is the way it’s been done in the past while ignoring a whole host of factors that have significantly changed in college football.
BV: It seems to me like people are ready to sign Frost up right now, career record of 12-7 and all. So from that perspective, each future UCF win, particularly a succession of them that lead to the CFP, only complicates matters for Nebraska.
DP: I’ll agree with my guys above that he’s getting a lot of love, but I will also say I’ve seen just as much brake-pumping. You just don’t have other outlets writing stories about those people. The "Frost is too unproven" contingent will probably still be against Frost even if he gets UCF to the playoff (something I don't see happening). The only complication that comes from a CFP berth for Frost and the Knights is in Nebraska’s timing. The Huskers season could be ending a month before UCF's does.
PPR 12-team league. Who should I start: Prescott or Watson? Also, Crabtree or Cooper? Getting close to crunch time in fantasy season. (@Corn_Huskers)
JP: Based on the match-up, Prescott seems to be the safe pick at quarterback as Watson is facing the Seahawks. As for the wide receiver spot, it’s probably a toss up as Buffalo’s defense has been pretty bad against the pass. Cooper had a monster game last week and it might be a little scary to put him on the bench, but Crabtree is probably the safer bet considering how good he has been in the red zone this season. Also, let it be known that I’m on a two-game losing streak and have dropped from first to sixth in my league.
BV: I haven't played fantasy football since my dad, brother and I were in a three-team league in the early 1990s and we calculated the point totals by hand. I don't know if they still do this, but Miller Lite used to hand out these little preseason guides every year. I think we got the scoring system from that. Anyway, the moral of the story is "what Jacob said."
Will Ozigbo start? (@gregdaake)
GS: Yes and rightfully so.
JP: Well, according to Reggie Davis, the coaches are “leaning towards him right now.”
DP: He will start, but we might see time from Wilbon. We should see time from Jaylin Bradley
Is it fair to play a night game on Halloween weekend where Purdue Pete is lurking? (@zjhunn)
GS: That is an unfair home field advantage that I had not considered. Purdue should hang additional pictures of Purdue Pete looking menacing in the visitor’s locker room.
JP: Fortunately for Nebraska, Michael Bruntz has been conditioning all of us for the Purdue Pete Experience by tweeting out pictures of that monstrosity at select times throughout the last week or so.
DP: You’re welcome. Sleep tight.
No words pic.twitter.com/2We1eVQi9A
— Derek Peterson (@DrPeteyHV) October 27, 2017
Does a change in D philosophy, QB type, and injuries allow Riley some slack for this season? (@jcooklamp)
GS: Typically, that would earn you some slack especially coming off a nine-win season. But Sep. 16 changed Mike Riley’s tenure for the worse with that loss to NIU. Plus, you can explain away losses to Wisconsin and Ohio State but there is a lack of progress being shown in getting closer to that level of competition. Once we enter the ambiguous “progress” talk, all bets are off.
JP: The other half of that equation is that the reason those first two things are true is because of decisions by Riley, and injuries are something that teams have to deal with every year. In a different circumstance, those factors might give Riley more time. But the loss to Northern Illinois and the stadium-emptying blowout against Ohio State has drawn all the attention.
BV: Only in retrospect. Nobody knew quite what to make of this roster and team in the preseason. Could be good, could be bad or could be somewhere in the middle, and the middle at Nebraska is somewhere close to 8-4. But for those projecting “good” it definitely seemed like a new quarterback and defense were potential reasons for optimism. I thought that, and while it was never a certainty it certainly didn’t feel unjust either. So if that is at all accurate – that a new scheme/QB could’ve helped Nebraska in 2017 – it’s hard for me to view those as legitimate reasons to think “well, of course there were going to be growing pains” now.