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Mailbag: When Is It Fair to Sound the Alarms on Nebraska’s Offense?

May 18, 2022

The mailbag has arrived.

In this week’s edition, we hit on topics like Nebraska’s offense this upcoming season—when should the alarm bells go off if it doesn’t hit the ground running as soon as everyone would like? We also provide insight on a roster-management question. With Division I FBS programs having a limit of 85 scholarship players by the start of the season, what does the number at Nebraska look like after the recent transfer additions?

 Enough talk. Here’s the mailbag:

At what point in the season should the alarm bells be ringing if the offense isn’t clicking given the number of games before Frost’s contract is halved, and why is it the Oklahoma game? (@HardyWallbanger)

Brandon Vogel: My gut reaction was the OU game is a little too early, but I’m coming around. Northwestern must replace its two best players on defense. North Dakota only returns four starters on that side of the ball. Georgia Southern has decent experience and should be improved, but there’s a lot of room for improvement from last season. It shouldn’t be a murderer’s row of defenses to start the season, and then you get to face whatever Brent Venables is cooking up in game four. If things are sputtering a bit after the Oklahoma game, it might be fair to sound at least a single alarm (but not all five).

Steve Marik: Brandon’s answer covered it well. I’d have to agree with the Oklahoma game. If the offense isn’t clicking by then—after playing Northwestern, North Dakota and Georgia Southern—it’d fair to sound the alarms.

We continue to pursue players in portal. I thought our scholarship limit was already maxed. Are there injuries, more expected defections or withdrawal of scholarships that free up the number? (@Oblivio60072055) 

Greg Smith: If my count is correct, the Huskers are actually over the scholarship limit with 86 right now. There will likely still be more departures. Since we are beyond May 1, which was the deadline to transfer without sitting out, look for those to be players going on medical or graduate transferring. We are probably looking at three or so more players leaving the team.

Steve: Greg’s answer is thee answer. We’ll see more attrition from the team. Just don’t know when it’ll become public.

Nebraska has hosted volleyball, baseball and bowling championship events. What would it take to host a big-time basketball, football or soccer event? (@SimbWanKenobi) 

Brandon: I’m not well-versed in all of the requirements to be a host site for, say, the early rounds of March Madness, so I downloaded the NCAA’s host site application materials. I won’t pretend I’m an expert now—off the top of my head, I’m not sure how many square feet of soft seating in suites Pinnacle Bank Arena has or could get, for example—but I didn’t see anything in there that would preclude Lincoln from bidding to host first- and second-round games. The only question would be if it has enough room for all of the ancillary facilities (weight room, media work room, etc.). The next best bet might be Morrison Stadium for the Champions Cup (which I think would be pretty cool). Most of the soccer host sites of late have been stadiums with seating for around 10,000 and Morrison Stadium is 6,000, so you’d need to figure out how to add some additional seating but Omaha, of course, has a strong track record with NCAA Championships. 

Other than Hail Varsity writers (obviously), who are your favorite Husker-related Twitter follows? (@huskerfan4life9) 

Greg: The guys over @GoBigRedCast do a great job. They are a fun follow.

Did Nebraska softball get a favorable draw in the Stillwater Regional? Do you see them advancing to the Super Regionals? 

Mike Babcock: Favorable in the sense that Stillwater isn’t a long trip, unfavorable because Oklahoma State beat No. 1 Oklahoma for the Big 12 championship. I’d like to see the Huskers advance, of course, but I don’t see it happening. 

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