Dedrick Mills

Nebraska's Dedrick Mills had 17 carries for 188 yards and one touchdown.

LINCOLN — World-Herald columnist Tom Shatel shares his immediate thoughts following the Huskers' 37-21 loss to Wisconsin.

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1. Who was that running back and where have they been hiding him? No, not Jonathan Taylor, who had a workmanlike 204 yards, if there is such a thing. I’m talking about Dedrick Mills, who rushed 17 times for 188 yards. That’s 11.1 yards per carry. Mills suddenly became more than just the inside-running grinder. He showed burst, speed, moves and explosiveness. He looked the part of the big-time back. The only complaint here was he didn’t get the ball on a couple of crucial downs late, including a direct snap to Wyatt Mazour. No offense, Mr. Mazour. I would have liked to have seen what Mills could have done there.

2. Nebraska’s special teams keep getting in the way. On kick returns, the Huskers should call for a fair catch or touchback every time if possible. Meanwhile, the kicking game cost NU 10 points Saturday. It’s one thing to build an offensive line or recruit defensive playmakers. But special teams is an area that can make up for deficiencies in other areas. It can’t be one of the deficiencies.

3. I found this interesting: Scott Frost gave us a hint to what kind of defense he wants. In his postgame presser, Frost said, “If we can get to where we’re giving up less than 30 points a game, I like our chances with where our offense is going.” I know some former Blackshirts who might not agree with that standard. Maybe Frost meant in the short term, while they’re building. Hard to believe that would be good enough to win at the highest levels and biggest games. There’s a lot of work to be done there, and not just with talent. There were some plays where the Blackshirts looked like Florida tackling Tommie Frazier.