As underdogs at home by 24 points, the Huskers are unlikely to put up a fight against the Buckeyes. I could end this post there, but for some bizarre, unknown reason, I will continue. The only hope for the Huskers is in pure college football chaos. Turnovers, lucky bounces, and a few breakout players are necessary to prevent a blowout, so what would it take for Nebraska to somehow beat Ohio State?
To look at Ohio State’s numbers, is to look into a team that scores points, gets yards, and stops opponents. The Buckeyes are second best in the country on first downs, and fourth in scoring. They are averaging 55 points/game in conference play over three games, and I see no reason not to lump Nebraska in with Indiana, Rutgers, and Maryland today. And if the offense for Ohio State was not frightening enough for the Blackshirts, the top 15 defense puts away opposing offenses by stopping long drives and taking away the ball.
For Nebraska to turn this into an interesting game would take a few things. The Huskers would need to end the game plus 3 in turnovers and at least 3 scores off those turnovers (maybe 13 points, and no Tanner Lee pick-6 balls). Additionally, they would have to turn to De’Mornay Pierson-El to run back a punt for a touchdown and a couple of long returns as well. Then to cap it all off, they would need a career night from an offensive producer like Stanley Morgan, Jr. or JD Spielman.
Even that might not be enough for the Huskers to win the game. It could easily be 56-13 sometime in the fourth quarter with the Huskers still trying to put their foot down to the floor on the gas pedal at the same time Ohio State steps back. The introduction of some less experienced players will bring no joy or solace to the vanquished, and only serve to contrast the depth in skill that Nebraska currently lacks. The Huskers stand almost no chance against the Buckeyes, and every reasonable stat points to that as well. Only pure chaos has a chance of afflicting Ohio State with a loss on Saturday.