All year round, former Husker and NFL veteran Adam Carriker is taking the pulse of Husker Nation. In the "Carriker Chronicles" video series, he breaks down the latest NU news, upcoming opponents, player updates and recruiting information, and he offers his insight into the X's and O's and more.
On Thursday's episode, Adam Carriker discusses five young Huskers who should play more in Nebraska's final three games.
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Here's a transcript of today's show:
Welcome to the Carriker Chronicles, the people's show, where we take the pulse of Husker nation brought to you by Nebraska Spine Hospital.
Logical question at this point in the season. We're entering our second bye week, we're 4-5, we've lost a few games in a row, bowl game looks daunting at this point. The logical question that comes to my mind, and I'm not the only one, I've heard other people talk about this. I thought I'd give my thoughts, people been asking the question, giving their answers.
So here's my thoughts: should Nebraska start playing more of their younger players? Now, I'm not giving up on a bowl game. It does look daunting at this point especially based on how we've looked so far the past few games and who we have to play in the remaining games, but I'm not giving up on a bowl game.
This mostly stems from Scott Frost saying that not everyone's bought in. Now I do believe some of that comes back to coaching at this point. We're almost two full years in.
But the question is, who are the players not buying in? It's without it specifically being said, it sure seems like it's the older players, the players who were there before Frost got there. They had a previous culture, and maybe they're not buying in. Nobody's really specifically said, but that seems to be the conclusion that most people are arriving at.
So because of that statement, if you're not going to buy in, and you're not what's best for now, and you're not going to be here in the future, then why are we playing you? Now maybe you're better at the moment, but if you're being lazy, are you really better? I'm not saying they're being lazy, but they're not giving their full effort, everyone is not. That is pretty obvious that the full effort from all the players on the team does not exist at this moment in time.
So if you're looking at the young players who are willing to give the full effort, and maybe they're inexperienced. Maybe they're not as good right now, maybe they're going to make some mistakes down the road, maybe they're gonna make mistakes right now, but here's the deal.
My 2-year-old daughter just walked into the room. She's going to help me do the show, apparently. Come here, Jordan. I did not know I would have a guest today. Come on. You can tell this was unplanned. She's just in her diaper and her pink blanket. This is how we roll on the Carriker Chronicles. Can you say hi?
All right, so the bottom line is this: if we're going to build for the future, and it may even be what's best for right now, if that's the young players, even if they're going to make freshman-type mistakes — they're going to make young player type mistakes — I got no problem with playing the young guys.
Now who are some of the young guys I think should get more playing time?
I'm going to start right off the top with Luke McCaffrey. Now should we burn his red shirts this year? No, that'd be silly. There's only one year of separation between him and Adrian Martinez. Now, is there some sort of quarterback controversy? Osborne stuck with Frost, Frost is going to stick with Martinez especially through the rest of this year. It's about getting McCaffrey some experience.
Now I will say this: I do think a quarterback battle in the offseason, even if Adrian wins, competition makes people better. I think that'd be a really, really good thing. Getting McCaffrey as much experience right now as you possibly can, whether he ends up starting next year or after Adrian Martinez leaves, I think would be a really good thing.
Next is outside linebacker Garrett Nelson, and he's already burned his redshirt. But you want to talk about a guy that plays with energy and effort and has an infectious mentality that everyone else will buy into, it is this guy. We also need to find a freaking pass rush. He needs a guy who can eventually get there. He's going to make those young guy mistakes, but I'm telling you Husker fans, once they get to know this guy, they're going to love him.
Defensive end Ty Robinson, this guy was one of the probably crown jewels of this recruiting class. Again, I don't know about wasting a redshirt or burning a redshirt, but the Davis twins are going to be gone. Ben Stille's going to be coming back, we're going to need another defensive end. We're going to need another pass rusher, we need to start winning in the trenches, let's start building with Ty Robinson.
Running back Rahmir Johnson, who Scott Frost has said is ready to help right now. With Maurice Washington out, it'd sure be great if Wan'Dale Robinson — he's fine in the running back spot, I love that kid — but it'd be great if he could be in the slot where he really should be. You can use him all over the place. Then Rahmir Johnson and Dedrick Mills could be that one-two punch that we thought Maurice Washington and Dedrick Mills would be.
You want to talk about speed? All right. I think that's another guy: wide receiver/tight end Chris Hickman. We got all sorts of speedy receivers all over the place. This guy's got some size. Now we got some tall, big targets at tight end, but I think getting Chris Hickman on the field, he's 6-foot-6. And those are her thoughts. I think it gives a struggling quarterback at the moment a big target.
All right, can you say bye?
Can you wave and go put a shirt on? Can you throw the bones? Blow a kiss. Surprise guest appearance. Go Big Red and always remember to throw the bones!
Thanks again to the Nebraska Spine Hospital. Ladies and gentlemen, when it’s your spine, you do not want to mess around. Experience matters. That’s why you can trust the experts at Nebraska Spine Hospital, the region's only spine specific hospital. They are the best at what they do.