Big Ten teleconference: Bo says Abdullah 'didn't disappoint' starting senior year

Bo Pelini said Tuesday on the Big Ten teleconference that I-back Ameer Abdullah gave Nebraska what it has come to expect against Florida Atlantic.

Abdullah started his senior season by picking up a career-high 232 rushing yards on 21 carries in the 55-7 win over the Owls. It moved Abdullah to the No. 6 slot on the NU all-time rushing chart, and Abdullah is expected to notch a third straight 1,000-yard season in 2014.

“I thought he looked fresh the other day,” Pelini said. “I thought he did everything well. He looked explosive. He didn’t disappoint.

“You don’t come out a...

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Practice report Sept. 2: Huskers expecting the unexpected from McNeese State

McNeese State didn't play a game last weekend, which means that all of the schematic tweaks made during the offseason aren't on film yet.

So Nebraska's defense is preparing for a lot in-game adjustments Saturday. The Huskers are developing a strategy from last year's film, but they're also putting together a plan to combat new plays that they think McNeese State might run.

It could be a case where they're scrapping it all after the first drive. In other words: It's basically a season-opener all over again for defensive coordinator John Papuchis and his unit.

"We're basi...

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Forcing more fumbles easier said than done

Nebraska finished last season with 38 sacks, tied for 12th-most nationally and second in the Big Ten. Yet the Huskers never ended up recovering a quarterback's fumble.

That caught the attention of defensive coordinator John Papuchis during his offseason self-scout.

The NU defenders forced quarterbacks to fumble seven different times (and recovered zero). They only ended up recovering four total fumbles last season.

So Papuchis said they've worked on “taking shots on the ball in QB pressures.”

Really, the goal is simply to be more alert and aware of fumble-forcing ...

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Scouting Miami for a minute

The long opening weekend of college football – plus that trusty DVR – affords a beat writer a few luxuries. The luxury of time. Time to watch full games of several future opponents before the NFL invades my house for the next six months – wife's rules. And time to throw a line out there on Twitter that, by end of Labor Day night, few Husker fans seemed to like.

It took Louisville 71 plays to gain 336 yards. Just file that away. Nebraska's better than this O, but Miami has some 2012 Wisconsin to it. — Samuel McKewon (@swmckewonOWH) September 2, 2014


This was after...

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Video: Big Red Today Show, Sept. 2

Watch the latest episode of "The Big Red Today Show" to get Sam McKewon and Jon Nyatawa's take on the latest Husker sports headlines.

Among the topics discussed on this week's show: Nebraska's offensive output against FAU, including the the line's performance; defensive end depth behind Randy Gregory; and looking ahead to McNeese State.

Watch the full video below:

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Husker press conference notes: Randy Gregory doubtful for McNeese State

LINCOLN – It's darn near the worst kind of trend. 

In 2012 and 2013, Nebraska's most important offensive players – Rex Burkhead and Taylor Martinez – suffered first-game injuries that dogged them for the rest of their senior seasons. 

Husker fans can hope the same fate doesn't befall defensive end Randy Gregory, who got his left knee scoped Sunday – in what coach Bo Pelini termed a minor cleanup – after an MRI revealed an old basketball injury had flared up again.

Pelini said Gregory is "doubtful" for Saturday's game against McNeese State – go ahead and chalk that up as...

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Video: Bo Pelini, Ameer Abdullah, Tommy Armstrong at Huskers' Monday press conference

NU coach Bo Pelini and several players addressed the media Monday as the team prepares for McNeese State.

Coach Bo Pelini

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Running back Ameer Abdullah

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Video: Volleyball coach John Cook at Husker press conference

NU volleyball coach John Cook addresses the media on Sept. 1, 2014.

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Sam McKewon's Top 25, Week One

The World-Herald doesn't have an Associated Press Top 25 vote this year, but I'll still be filing a weekly Top 25 poll until the release of the College Football Playoff poll. Once that poll comes out, we'll be shifting to analyzing the committee's picks and projecting what could happen from there.

The poll is a combination of what a team has accomplished (wins + metrics), what a team's opponents have accomplished (strength of schedule) – which is hard to measure yet and generally hard to measure because of a small sample size – overall talent profile (a four-year lookback at talent...

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Ameer Abdullah wins Big Ten Player of the Week honors

Nebraska running back Ameer Abdullah won Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week honors Monday after rushing for a career-high 232 yards in the Huskers 55-7 romp over Florida Atlantic. It is Abdullah's second such award; he last won it on Oct. 7, after he had run for a then-career-high 225 yards against Illinois. 

Rutgers safety Johnathan Aiken won Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week. Penn State kicker Sam Ficken won Special Teams Player of the Week for his game-winning field goal against Central Florida. Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett and Penn State wide receiver DaeSean Hamilt...

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Just like Huskers, our celebrity prognosticators start off on high note

Last week, we gathered five expert opinions on how the Huskers would do in week 1 against Florida Atlantic. 

No surprise, they are all now 1-0 on the season after the Huskers rolled past FAU on Saturday. 

Who came closest to predicting the final score? Noted Twitter faux coach @FauxPelini and former Nebraska and NFL player Adam Carriker both came close. @FauxPelini missed the final score by 15 points, Carriker by 16 points.

See their predictions below and check back next week to see who they pick in Nebraska's game with McNeese State. 

Week 1 #Huskers predictions...

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Newby says 100 was nice, but NU I-back knows his role

Terrell Newby was finishing some interviews Saturday when the Fox Sports1 crawler on the main TV in the Nebraska players lounge flashed the Huskers’ score.

Included among the stat report that followed was the rushing line for the sophomore I-back: 16 attempts, 107 yards, two touchdowns.

Newby didn’t see it behind him, but he already knew the numbers from when NU assistant coach Ron Brown had told him on the Husker sideline late in the game. It was hard not to smile.

"I think it’s a pretty cool milestone for me, (the) first 100-yard game of my career,” Newby said. “But I...

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Photos: Huskers in the NFL, Aug. 31

The National Football League regular season is almost here.

Preseason games wrapped up on Thursday. Curious to see your favorite former Huskers in action? Check out our updated Huskers in the NFL photo showcase for a complete roundup of NFL action shots.

This week's update includes Jason Ankrah, Stanley Jean-Baptiste and more.

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From the archives: NU's top 5 most productive offensive games

In light of Nebraska's 784-yard outing on Saturday — the fifth-highest offensive output in school history — we thought we'd dig up some information on the four games from the Huskers' past that topped the charts.

Some notes about Saturday's game:

>> The 784 yards posted against FAU set a new Big Ten Conference modern-era record, edging the previous record of 763 posted by Purdue against Indiana on Nov. 20, 2004.

>> The Huskers' 498 rushing yards are the most under Bo Pelini.

>> Nebraska has rushed for at least 229 yards in each of its past six se...

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Nebraska ties, Aug. 30


Craig Bohl, Wyoming: The Cowboys beat Montana 17-14 in Bohl’s debut.

Frank Solich, Ohio: The Bobcats kicked a field goal as time expired to beat Kent State 17-14.

Turner Gill, Liberty: The Flames led 22-21 with about 6 minutes left in the third quarter before losing 56-29 to North Carolina.

Joe Moglia, Coastal Carolina: The Chanticleers beat The Citadel 31-16 to make Moglia 3-0 in season openers.

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Game Replay: Nebraska 55, Florida Atlantic 7

World-Herald correspondent Steve Beideck takes a look at some of the key moments that helped shape NU’s 55-7 win over Florida Atlantic.

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Part 1: Oh, those pesky on-off switches. Referee Greg Blum forgot to slide his wireless microphone to off, thus sharing this little ditty with everyone in Memorial Stadium: "Take a look at the time, man, take a look at the time. Two minutes, 30 seconds....

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Video: Postgame analysis with Sam McKewon

World-Herald staff writer Sam McKewon offers his instant reaction to Nebraska's 55-7 win over Florida Atlantic in the season-opener on Saturday.

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They said it: Bo Pelini on FAU, Armstrong, the behind-the-back catch and more

Check out the video and transcript from Nebraska coach Bo Pelini's postgame press conference following the Huskers' 55-7 win over Florida Atlantic on Saturday.

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Opening statement: 

"I thought it was a good start for our team. I saw a lot of good things out there, and I saw a lot of things we're going to need to clean up and get fixed. I think we've got to disect this tape and look at where we are. We di...

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Tom's Takes: Nebraska 55, Florida Atlantic 7

The World-Herald's Tom Shatel offers his quick takeaways from the Nebraska-Florida Atlantic game.

* * *


There was a lot to like Saturday, especially on offense. Playmakers everywhere. But what I liked was the aggressive play-calling and sense of urgency. The drive before halftime was a perfect example. Nebraska took over on its 33 with 38 seconds left, leading 31-7. Tim Beck wanted more. NU got to the FAU 27 with time running down. You could hear Beck from his booth in the press box screaming, "SPIKE IT! SPIKE IT! SPIKE IT!" It didn't work out. But it ...

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Former Huskers Ankrah, Compton and Martin make NFL squads

Former Nebraska kicker Alex Henery wasn't the only former Husker to be cut as NFL teams trimmed rosters on Saturday. But there was good news for some former NU stars as well.

Running back Rex Burkhead made the Cincinnati Bengals roster, but will reportedly miss the first month of the season with a knee injury.

Undrafted free agent Jason Ankrah, who was made a few appearances in our Huskers in the NFL photo showcase this preseason, survived the cuts in Houston.

One undrafted rookie makes the #Texans 53: OLB Jason Ankrah. Became clear late he'd be the fourth guy there. —...

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Third quarter: Nebraska 48, Florida Atlantic 7

Now things are just getting silly. Nebraska's in full control of its opener, but the Huskers are still providing plenty of entertainment.

Jordan Westerkamp caught a pass behind his back along the sideline -- a play you'll see on ESPN's "SportsCenter" over and over again this week. The defender went underneath and tipped it. With his momentum taking him out of bounds, Westerkamp managed to snatch the ball with both arms behind his back. He got a foot in, too.

Ameer Abdullah's been showing off as well. After his last carry of the half's first scoring drive, the senior I-back ro...

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Halftime: Nebraska 31, Florida Atlantic 7

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What a start for Nebraska's offense. Five scores on the first five drives. Making it look easy.

Sophomore Tommy Armstrong seems more comfortable than ever running the show at quarterback — reading plays well, not forcing the issue and putting the ball where it needs to be.

Armstrong has completed four of his five throws on third down for a total of 84 yards. He's 12-for-24 at the break.

Of course...

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The Huskers have changed the Tunnel Walk (a tiny bit)

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There was a whole lot of speculation about changes to the Tunnel Walk leading up to Saturday's NU-FAU game, the season opener at Memorial Stadium.

There were some small tweaks, as staff writer Sam McKewon highlighted on Twitter below.

The big non-change? The Huskers stuck with "Sirius" by the Alan Parsons Project as the intro music.

Sam's observations:

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First quarter: Nebraska 14, Florida Atlantic 7

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Not sure we saw this coming. Nebraska's offense begins its opener by driving efficiently down the field, while the much-hyped NU defense can't get off it.

The result is a 14-7 lead for NU.

Obviously, there's plenty of time left for storylines and game-themes to develop.

But at least to start, the Huskers' starting quarterback appears to be stealing the show, making good decisions and running Nebr...

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Former Husker Alex Henery cut by Eagles

The Philadelphia Eagles announced their 53-man roster on Saturday afternoon, and former Husker kicker Alex Henery didn't make the cut.

The Eagles listed one kicker — rookie Cody Parkey — on the roster. Parkey had been brought in to compete with Henery via a trade with the Colts earlier this week.

During Thursday's preseason finale, Parkey went 3 for 3 on field goals — including a 54-yarder — while hitting both of his extra-point attempts. Henery went 2 for 2 on PATs in the game while being held off the field during field goals.

Henery has three years of NFL experience, ...

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Big Red Breakfast: Bo Pelini calls marijuana 'out of control' in society

Bo Pelini veered off topic on Friday morning at the Big Red Breakfast and took a strong stance against marijuana, telling a crowd of about 250 that it’s a “real problem out there.”

Pelini called it not only an issue in high schools, middle schools and even grade schools, but society in general, saying, “It is out of control.”

“Let’s face it, it’s not OK,” Pelini said. “I think everybody that’s our age, my age, hopefully understands that it’s not OK. It’s not good. It’s not good for you. And these kids do it on a daily basis and a yearly basis … and it’s a real problem out the...

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Huskers represented in FIBA Basketball World Cup

A pair of players with Nebraska ties are in action in the FIBA Basketball World Cup that begins Saturday. NU sophomore Tai Webster (New Zealand) and former Husker Jorge Brian Diaz (Puerto Rico) will represent their nations in the 24-team tournament.

Webster, who has been the starting point guard for New Zealand during the second half of its tournament preparations, comes off his best effort in a win over Serbia earlier this week. Webster had 21 points, four rebounds and a pair of assists in the 102-96 victory.

Diaz, who is making his debut with the Puerto Rican national team,...

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From the Archives: The Huskers, Bugeaters, Rattlesnake Boys and more

Old Gold Knights, Antelopes, Rattlesnake Boys and the Bugeaters. Those were the names for Nebraska's football team before 1900.

Iowa was actually using the name Cornhuskers at the time, but Lincoln sportswriter Cy Sherman thought Nebraska's team need a more dignified nickname. Since Iowa seemed to prefer the Hawkeyes, Sherman started referring to the Nebraska team as the Cornhuskers in 1900.

Here's a look at the early years of Nebraska football. Click on each image to expand the photo and see caption information.

Nebraska's 1894 Bugeaters:

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Mad Chatter: Joe Glenn's hunting trip, why the B1G needs to bolster opening night, Tunnel Walk feedback

It’s Friday! That means Ten Big stories in 10 little bites. We’re exclusively football today. We cover Jerry Jones’ Scotch and Barry Alvarez’s cabana, Rutgers’ statement win and Kenny Hill’s monster debut, Tunnel Walk feedback and Nebraska’s season opener. But let’s begin off the beaten path, at the second-closest Division I football program to Omaha.

A year and a half ago, South Dakota had just joined the FCS Missouri Valley Conference. The athletic department was looking for a big payday to balance its budget. An FBS opponent to open the 2014 season.

Head coach Joe Glenn ha...

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Big Red Breakfast: Kenny Bell to field punts Saturday

It appears that Kenny Bell will be extra busy Saturday.

The senior already is on pace to become Nebraska’s all-time leading receiver, heading into the season with 134 career catches. He is coming off back-to-back seasons with 50 or more receptions.

A year ago, Bell also returned more kickoffs than any Husker (23) and ranked No. 18 nationally at 26.5 yards per attempt.

Now the 6-foot-1, 185-pounder will start his final season as the Huskers’ punt returner, NU head coach Bo Pelini said Friday at the Big Red Breakfast.

“I think Kenny will do a really good job at it,”...

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