2009 Nebraska Cornhuskers Football Preview
2009 Nebraska Cornhuskers season preview from Maddux Sports. Below you can find our official Nebraska Cornhuskers football preview as well as the 2009 Nebraska Cornhuskers Football Schedule. If you dont know how to beat the odds, give Maddux's winning NCAA picks a shot.
Coach: Bo Pelini (2nd year at Nebraska)
Team Name: Cornhuskers
2008 Overall Record: 9-4
Returning Starters: 13
Last season, the Nebraska Cornhuskers (9- 4 overall, 5- 3 Big 12) tied for first in the Big 12 North. That earned the Huskers a trip to the Gator Bowl where they defeated Clemson 26- 21. It was, in a way, a victory for this team to get to a bowl game since they had missed a bowl berth in 2007 after going 5- 7. This season, the Cornhuskers hope to up the stakes even more by making it to a BCS Bowl.
Last season, the 17th ranked Cornhuskers offense put an average of 35.4 PPG on the board. That was behind the expert passing and accurate arm of QB Joe Ganz. Ganz is gone and so too is favorite new starter Patrick Witt, who transferred. Junior Zac Lee, whose dad, Bob Lee, was an NFL quarterback, looks to be the likely starter. Lee can run, has an accurate and strong arm and is a good leader. He’ll be throwing to tight end Mike McNeil (32 REC, 442 YDs, 6 TDs), a junior who last season averaged 13.8 YPR, and Menelik Holt (30 REC, 356 YDs, 1 TD), a senior who was good for 11.8 YPR. Two solid junior running backs return—Roy Helu (125 ATT, 603 YDs, 7 TDs) and Quentin Castille (106 ATT, 467 YDs, 6v TDs). The O-line brings back three fine starters and is sound.
The Huskers defense, which was ranked 80th in the nation, allowed 28.5 PPG. This season, they should be a lot better. One reason is the return of senior nose tackle Ndemkong Suh (76 TKLs, 7.5 SKs, 11.5 TFL 2 INT), who was projected to be a first-round pick in this year’s NFL Draft. He’s an amazing athlete, who led the team in tackles, sacks and tackles for a loss, made two picks and caught a touchdown pass. Junior DE Pierre Allen (52 TKLs, 5 SKs, 5 TFL) is also a fine upfront player. The linebacking unit is talented but inexperienced. They’ll need to come together quickly. Senior safety Larry Asante (67 TKLs, 1 SK, 1 TFL, 1 INT) is an all-around player.
Placekicker and punter Alex Henry (56- 57 Extra Pts, 18- 21 FG), a junior, is back. He’s got a long and accurate leg that can split the uprights from 50-plus yards out. Niles Paul handled runbacks last season. He averaged 10.0 yards per punt return and 23.6 yards per kick return. However, freshman Antonio Bell may get the nod on kickoffs and sophomore Marcus Mendoza looks to get a chance at punts.
Head coach Bo Pelini (10- 4 in one year at Nebraska) did a good job in his first year as a head coach. He also managed to sign some of the finest recruits in the nation, including quarterback Cody Green and running back Rex Burkhead. Last season, the Huskers lost three straight—30- 35 to Virginia Tech, 17- 52 to Missouri and 31- 37 to Texas Tech in OT. Those losses, which spanned from September 27 through October 11, derailed the team momentarily. Still, they showed a lot of character, winning five of their last six regular season games. Two major contests will determine this team’s fate—the October 8 rematch versus Missouri and the November 14 game with Kansas. Both could be wins. The Cornhuskers stand a good chance of taking the Big 12 North and going to a middle tier bowl game.
Nebraska Cornhuskers Football Schedule
For more info on the 2009 Nebraska Cornhuskers football program, view the Cornhuskers website or read up on the rest of the Big 12 ncaa football teams below.