Sunday, October 27, 2013

Ain't No Fun (If the Gophers Can't Have None)

Guess who's back, in the motherfuckin' house,
With a fat dick, for all the Husker fans' mouth,
Bo can't recognize, what kids and grandmas do too,
When T Vag is under center, tragic losses will ensue.

Nebraska's football team averaged 6.3 yards per carry Saturday at Minnesota. Nebraska's starting running back averaged 8.7 yards per carry. Nebraska lost to Minnesota.

How the fuck, you ask, did that happen? We have no fucking clue, other than to say it was Groundhog Day all over again, complete with meltdowns, gaffes, blown coverages, fumbles, interceptions, inexplicable lack of coaching acumen, and missed tackles, and stuff....

In order to maintain some semblance of focus, and to avoid wasting 10,000 words on the countless shortcomings of Private Bo Pinelli and his football team, we'll concentrate on analyzing his post-game assessment of what went wrong against the Golden Gophers:

1. NU couldn't get ahead on first down, Pinelli claimed. Looking at the game summary, the Huskers' first down gains were: 13, 4 for a touchdown, 14, 7, 5, 7, incompletion for 0, 1, sack for -8, 10,  1, 6, incompletion for 0, -7 on swing pass, 2, incompletion for 0, 9, 3, 4, 22, incompletion for 0, 22, 2 (Imani Cross), 1, 11.

That's 25 first down plays for 129 yards -- more than five yards per. Fourteen of them produced a good result. Nineteen produced positive yardage. Six produced zero or negative yardage. All of those were pass plays. Nebraska's starting running back, Ameer Abdullah, averaged 8.7 yards a carry. Anyone see a problem here?

Obviously, we do. Besides the obvious strategic error by passing instead of running, Pinelli is either a liar or has no grasp on what his offense is achieving while on the field. That's a problem.

The larger problem lies in the fact that Pinelli is blind to to the fact that his offensive coordinator is killing his team. After NU's first two scripted drives, where Tim Beck purposely set up chances for Alonzo Moore, Quincy Enunwa, Abdullah, Kenny Bell and Jamal Turner to touch the ball, he fell flat and had no idea what to do. The offense didn't have a  first down pass play for positive yardage after the first quarter.

Moore and Turner fell off the map. When Minnesota took its first lead at 14-10, Abdullah, despite being a hell of a running back, did what he always does at the worst possible time -- fumble the ball away. With Minnesota still leading 17-13 early in the second half, NU got a stop, and Beck pissed the bed. Two-yard rush, pass, pass, punt.

When Minnesota extended its lead to 24-13 on its second drive of that second half, Beck did what he always does way too early in the game -- hit the panic button. On NU's ensuing drive, it was the movie we've seen a hundred times: Pass. Pass. Pass. Punt. Minnesota field goal. 27-13. Any good team would have made it 31-13. Luckily, Minnesota is a bad team. Good enough to beat Nebraska, but still bad.

2. Nebraska, according to its head coach, didn't execute--again. Countless misses by the front seven. When they did make contact with the ball carrier, they were dragged for several more yards downfield. Apparently, NU's strength guru, James Dobson, doesn't believe in 40-yard dash times OR lifting weights. Bad combo.

Countless coverage errors by linebackers and defensive backs alike. David Santos and Zaire Anderson looked pathetic. Where was Michael Rose? Harvey Jackson had at least two crushing errors, one giving up a touchdown on a Gopher 4th and 10.

Even the most casual observer can see it on television. Can the coach physically make the players smart enough or fast enough to complete their assignments? No. But, for $3 million per year and after six seasons, he better figure out how to get players who can do that

. Instead, the problem worsens with each game and each year.

3. Minnesota "out-physicaled" Nebraska, per Private Pinelli. As mentioned above, where does Dobson enter into this mix. The players look slow, chunky and outmatched in almost all cases. Can anyone name the last time they saw any Husker defender fly to the ball and light someone up? Well, except the time when NU's only decent defender did it against Purdue and got ejected.

The Gophers racked up yard after yard after contact. They ran it right down Nebraska's fucking throat. They ran it on 21 of their first 22 plays. No tricks. No gimmicks. And as former Cornhusker Fabian Washington aptly stated during the game on Twitter -- No lube.

Minnesota scored its first touchdown on a 13-play drive that went like this: 12 rushes, 1 pass. Gains of 11, 8, 2 for a first down, 7, 4 for a first down, 6, 13, 3, 7 for a first down, 7, 4 for a first down, 1, 1 for a touchdown. Gopher cock, right up the ass. Again, and again. No Vaseline.

4. Taylor Martinez didn't lose this game for Nebraska, said Pinelli. And, as the entire nation outside of the Nebraska coaching staff can see, he brings nothing to the table. He hasn't since halfway through his freshman season, when defensive coordinators learned how to shut down this one-trick pony. Can't run, unless one considers two yards per attempt to be a dangerous weapon. Can't pass effectively, unless one considers 4.5 yards per attempt effiicent. Hell, those numbers would make even Blaine Gabbert blush. His game-ending interception frosted a turd in a way only Martinez can frost a turd. Awkward, inexplicable, embarrassing.

Bottom line is that he's bad when 100 percent healthy, so why does he play when injured? Why do coaches feel it necessary to lie about his injury, calling it a turf toe, when opposing coaches know how to goad him into the same mistakes, hurt or not? Why is Beck allegedly drawing up a quarterback draw on 3rd & nine with the game on the line? It was a call so horrendous it was almost equal to Frank Solich calling timeout in the 2002 Rose Bowl against Miami and then coming back with a QB draw on 4th and 7. Why is Pinelli admitting they got bluffed by a team with an intern as a head coach? PYB doesn't remember Phil Ivey going on record saying he got bluffed by a weekend Vegas poker hack.

We digress. So, if a quarterback can't fucking run and can't fucking pass, he better have a lot of intangibles as a leader. Does that including losing track of the play clock so that the running back has to step in and call timeout? Does that include holding the ball three counts too long time after time, year after year, meltdown after meltdown? Does that include acting like a petulant fucking brat, despite being a team "C"aptain, during press conferences? Well, the press conferences he decides to actually attend. This just in: Dodging legitimate questions entirely or "I don't know what to say" and "Can't tell ya, let's go to the next question" don't cut it for a freshman, much less a four-year starter. And stuff.

All the above aside, this loss falls at Beck's feet. NU had a chance to snap the Gophers' neck early in the game, just like they had that chance against UCLA in September. Leading 7-0, Nebraska took over at the Minnesota 47-yard line and moved 30 yards in quick fashion. As always, Beck got too cute for his own good. Second and five, fade pattern to the endzone. Incomplete. Third and five, dropback pass....hold the ball, hold the ball, hold the ball...sack. Drive over. Field goal instead of touchdown. 10-0. Closers snuff out shitty teams when they have a chance. Losers try to prove how deep their playbook is and settle for field goals.

One would think Beck would have learned after rolling down the field on Nebraska's first drive and calling a pass play that required Martinez to plant his injured left foot before rolling back against the grain to throw a pass. Instead of locating a receiver, he fell on his face for a big loss. Luckily, NU converted a first down on (GASP), 16-yard option RUN. Kenny Bell caught a 41-yard pass in traffic and wasn't injured because he caught the ball. Cross scored a touchdown. Lesson learned. Or not.

On another first-half series, Beck dialed up a drop back pass on third and three (with a starting RB who averaged 8.7 yards per carry). Martinez froze in the pocket, as per usual, and got sacked. Wait, NU got a reprieve and was blessed with a first down after Minnesota was called for a facemask. Great!! Ball near midfield with a chance to go to the locker room with the lead. So, what does any smart coordinator do? Dial up another dropback against a defensive line that was gaining momentum, bullying the NU offensive line and disrupting every pass, of course! Sack, pass on second and 18, pass play on third and 18, Martinez stutter-scrambles for five yards. Punt!

The picture is complete. This is Beck's MO. Bell dropped what should have been a touchdown before halftime, and faked an injury -- his new MO. He fought with fans on Twitter after the game, also a pattern. In fact, it's all a pattern and all disturbing. NU used to save its national television meltdowns for big games against average-to-good teams. Yesterday's came against a bad team without a head coach.

A bad team that admitted they basically copied the Big 10 Championship gameplan that an average Wisconsin team used to dismantle Private Pinelli's troops last December.

How many years do NU fans have to wait for their $3 Million Man to be the one with a strategic, proactive plan that outwits the other team? For their team's players to block and tackle with force and to execute basic fundamentals and assignments? For their offensive coordinator to forge an identity and utilize the numerous weapons he has at his disposal? To watch games, win or lose, without seizing up from watching another poorly coached effort. It's been 16 and counting.

Meanwhile, Oregon dismantled the flawed UCLA team that dismantled the extremely flawed Nebraska team two months ago. Scott Frost's stock rises by the day. Will NU's athletic department have the guts and the vision to go get him? To go get a Nebraska guy with a national championship pedigree and experience with a top-five program from today's New-Age college football?

Or, will NU's leaders shy away from change? Fear the huge financial and emotional effort that every coaching change brings?

They can be courageous, and make a change, or continue to wither away and blow off the college football landscape.

Either way, it ain't no fun...


  1. Hard to defend a QB who encorages the away crowd to get louder while on your own 5 yard line needing a TD to win. Then go 3 and out and punt the ball away.... Solid

  2. That was an amazing occurrence that i saw on the game replay Proof of his utter stupidity. The fact that nobody has written about it in newspapers is amazing. Its worse than him throwing the bones after a TD.

  3. Unlike Bo, when I go on record about something and then am wrong I own it. I thought even Nebraska could get through murders row of SDSU, Illinois, Purdue, and Minnesota but I was wrong.

    Week after week Pelini comments about how the other team 'is showing them something we didn't prepare for'. First, I don't know how that is possible considering we all know how other teams are going to beat us. Second, here is a crazy idea, make an adjustment.

    I will never root for Nebraska to lose. But silver lining- if this team is as bad as they showed Saturday, and Pelini is as bad as he has showed in every 'big' game (and now several guarantee games), Nebraska will lose several more games this season (if not all of them) and he will be gone. I said I would support Pelini, I was wrong.

    Then again, Pelini may be saved by the fact that every team left on our schedule has glaring flaws that could be taken advantage of. Still stupid to hope for 10-2?
    -Ghost of Todd Peat

  4. not stupid to hope, but stupid to expect it to happen!