Published Wednesday, October 30, 2013 at 12:01 am / Updated at 12:30 am
Notes: Northwestern likely will turn to freshman Buckley in its backfield

Venric Mark’s injury and Mike Trumpy’s fumbles likely will lead to Nebraska seeing a lot of redshirt freshman Stephen Buckley in the Northwestern backfield on Saturday.

Buckley, a 6-foot, 180-pound tailback from Forney, Texas, carried 17 times for 99 yards in the 17-10 overtime loss at Iowa last week. The former high school quarterback went for 58 yards and a touchdown against Minnesota the week before.

“I think it was pretty apparent Saturday who the best running back on the field was for us,” Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald said. “That was Stephen Buckley.”

Mark is bothered by a leg injury and has played in just three games this season, and none since the Wildcats’ loss at Wisconsin on Oct. 12. Trumpy fumbled on two of his 13 carries at Iowa.

Fitzgerald said at his weekly press conference that Trumpy is still going to have a role in the Wildcats’ offense.

“I have full confidence that Michael will respond the right way, but putting the ball on the ground is unacceptable,” Fitzgerald said. “He understands that he’s got to earn back that trust to get the ball.”

Good memories from 2011

Fitzgerald has some vivid memories of his last visit to Memorial Stadium, when his Wildcats stunned then-No. 9 Nebraska 28-25 in 2011.

Jeremy Ebert with a catch and great footwork to get an important fourth down. Kain Colter with “unbelievable effort” for a touchdown. Two key turnovers forced by his defense.

“And then the incredible sportsmanship showed by the Nebraska fans,” Fitzgerald said. “I mean, that was one of the more neat experiences that I’ve ever been a part of. They were high-fiving our guys and congratulating them on the win. That was a first in a Big Ten road win for us.”

Wullenwaber moving on

Sophomore walk-on Tyler Wullenwaber has decided to end his Nebraska football career due to injury.

Wullenwaber announced the news on his Twitter account Wednesday evening, saying this: “My body doesn’t want me to play football anymore and it’s time to start a new chapter in my life.” He also thanked his teammates and the Husker fans.

Wullenwaber, who’s from Utica, Neb., had two catches for 47 yards, including a 23-yard touchdown pass against South Dakota State. But he’s been dealing with a shoulder injury ever since. He suffered a season-ending knee injury last year and had shoulder surgery before that.

Coach Bo Pelini confirmed through a spokesman Wednesday night that Wullenwaber is no longer on the active roster.

Contact the writer: Rich Kaipust    |   402-444-1042    |  

Rich Kaipust is a staff writer for The Omaha World-Herald and covers Nebraska football and some general assignment tasks, including the College World Series and U.S. Olympic Swim Trials.

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