The Huskers are coming off a 9-5 season in 2006, when NU returned to the Big 12 Championship Game and saw four of its losses come against top-10 opponents. After finishing just outside of the final 2006 polls, the Huskers find themselves ranked in the top 25 in both major preseason polls.
The game against
Saturday’s game will mark the first-ever meeting between
Game One: Nebraska vs. Nevada
- Saturday, Sept. 1, 2:36 p.m.
- Lincoln, Neb. (Memorial Stadium/Tom Osborne Field)
- Surface: FieldTurf
- Capacity: 81,067
- Rankings: NU (AP-20; Coaches-19); Nevada, Not Ranked
- Series Record: First meeting
- Special Event: Alumni Band Day
- Television: ABC Regional - Dan Fouts–Play-by-Play; Tim Brant–Analyst; Todd Harris–Sideline
Radio: Husker Sports Network -Jim Rose—Play-by-Play; Adrian Fiala—Color; Matt Davison-Color; Sean Callahan—Sideline; Lane Grindle-Sideline; Huskers.com (Free Live Audio); SIRIUS Satellite Radio Channel 126
A year after taking on four top-10 foes, Nebraska will once again face one of the nation’s toughest schedules in 2007. Among Nebraska's 12 regular-season contests, eight will be against teams that participated in a bowl game following last season, beginning with Saturday’s game against Nevada (MPC Computers). The non-league slate also includes games against 2006 Bowl Championship Series participants
In league play,
Bowl Opponents at Home in 2007
NU Boasts 21-Game Winning Streak in Season Openers
The Huskers’ 21-game win streak in season openers is four better than the 17 straight opening wins by both
Since 1973, NU is 29-4-1 in season openers, including 24-2 at Memorial Stadium, with losses only to
Huskers Hope to Feature Another Balanced Offense
The Huskers finished 14th nationally and third in the Big 12 in total offense at 414.6 yards per game. Those numbers represented a 94.3-yard improvement over the 2005 season, when the Husker offense clicked late in the year. The 2005 Huskers finished the season 96th nationally in total offense at 320.3 yards per game.
The Huskers' offensive gain was largely attributed to a much-improved running attack. In 2005,
96.0 ypg (110th)
170.5 ypg (23rd)
74.5 ypg Passing
224.3 ypg (54th)
244.1 ypg (23rd)
19.8 ypg Total
320.3 ypg (96th)
414.6 ypg (14th)
94.3 ypg Scoring
24.7 ppg (67th)
30.6 ppg (17th)
Keller to Direct Husker Offensive Attack
Nebraska Head Coach Bill Callahan announced on Monday, Aug. 20 that senior Sam Keller will open the season as
Keller is in his second year in the
Keller is the latest quarterback who will have the opportunity to flourish in Callahan’s West Coast Offense. A year ago, senior Zac Taylor re-wrote the
The Nevada Wolf Pack enter Memorial Stadium this weekend in the season opener for both teams.
The Wolf Pack look to continue their recent strong play on offense and special teams. Last year,
Defensively, the Wolf Pack will be without senior linebacker Ezra Butler for Saturday’s game against the Huskers. Butler, a first-team all-league performer who led the team with 71 tackles last season and is on the 2007 Lombardi Watch list, was suspended from the first contest of the year for a violation of team rules. Without
On special teams, kicker Brett Jaekle, punter Zacary Whited and kick returner Dwayne Sanders are back after a solid 2006 campaign, but the Wolf Pack must replace the game-changing ability of punt returner De’Angelo Wilson, who averaged 14.3 yards per return to rank ninth nationally last year.
Nevada Head Coach Chris Ault
Wolf Pack head coach Chris Ault (
Ault is in his third stint as head coach at his alma mater. He previously coached the Wolf Pack from 1976 to 1992 and again in 1994 and 1995. Ault, a six-time conference coach of the year, then came back to the sideline in 2004 and has helped
Nebraska-Nevada Series...First Meeting
Nebraska-Nevada Statistical Comparison (2006 final statistics)
Natl. Rushing Offense
24th Passing Offense
74th Total Offense
46th Scoring Offense
20th Rushing Defense
52nd Pass Defense
52nd Pass Efficiency Defense
48th Total Defense
48th Scoring Defense
30th Net Punting
103rd Punt Returns
9th Kickoff Returns
14th Turnover Margin
15th Tackles For Loss
52nd Sacks Allowed
bold indicates top-25 national ranking
2007 Huskers Hope to Again Find Fast Offensive Starts
A large part of the first quarter success came as a result of
In games against
Imposing Offensive Line to Set Tone for Husker Offense
The 2007 Huskers open the year with their most veteran offensive front in several seasons. The unit has six players with extensive starting experience, and combined with an influx of talented young players the offensive line could evoke memories of past great NU units. Center Brett Byford, guards Mike Huff, Andy Christensen and Matt Slauson, along with tackles Lydon Murtha and Carl Nicks made a combined 48 starts last season and form the nucleus of the group. In addition to game experience, the NU offensive line has another main feature--size. The six aforementioned players check in at an average of 6-4 1/2 and 312 pounds. That figure does not include several other large reserve linemen, including senior Victory Haines (6-7, 290), and redshirt freshmen D.J. Jones (6-5, 310) and Keith Williams (6-5, 310).
Record-Setting Receiving Corps Back for More in 2007
NU receivers have also put their names in a prominent position in the record book. The entire corps of wideouts returns along with three of four tight ends who saw extensive action last season.
Leading the way are senior Terrence Nunn and junior Nate Swift. Both players have played a prominent role in the
Swift set a
Senior Maurice Purify had an outstanding first season at
Senior Frantz Hardy does not possess the same volume of catches, but boasts two of the most explosive receiving games in NU history. His 152 receiving yards against
Husker Offense Hopes to Make Most of Return to Old Clock Rules
Ruud, McKeon Climbing
The Nebraska Blackshirt defense will be anchored by a veteran linebacking corps. The leaders of that unit are a pair of two-year starters in Corey McKeon and Bo Ruud. Both McKeon and Ruud figure to move well up the
McKeon enters his senior season with 167 career tackles, including 30 tackles for loss and eight sacks. McKeon registered a NU linebacker record 22 tackles for loss as a sophomore in 2005 and earned second-team All-Big 12 honors. Last season, he finished third on the team with 69 tackles and had eight tackles for loss. His career tackle total places him 43rd at
Ruud has similar numbers to McKeon after two seasons as NU's starting WILL linebacker. The
Three Seniors Chosen as 2007 Captains
A trio of Husker seniors were elected by their teammates as captains for 2007. Center Brett Byford, linebacker Bo Ruud and cornerback Zack Bowman join the prestigious list of those who have served as captains at
Byford started the final 13 games of the 2006 season, anchoring the Husker offensive line. He is a candidate for all-conference honors this fall and is on the preseason watch list for the Rimington Trophy, given to the nation’s top center. Byford is the first ever
The 6-2, 200-pound Bowman is
Bo Ruud continues a long family history of serving as Husker captains. He joins his brother, Barrett, who served as a captain in 2004, making the Ruud’s the seventh brother combination to serve as Husker captains. In addition, Bo’s father, Tom, was a Husker captain in 1974, making the Tom Ruud and his two sons the only father-son combinations to serve as captains. Bo’s great grandfather, Clarence Swanson, was also a
NCAA Record 282 Consecutive Home Sellouts
The fan support at Memorial Stadium has led to a dominant home advantage for the Huskers. NU has won at least six home games in 18 of the past 20 seasons and is 160-18 at home since 1981. Nine of the losses in the span have come against teams that finished in the top eight of the final AP poll.
Since 1986, only seven schools have left Memorial Stadium with a victory. During
NU Looks to Continue Success vs. Big 12 North
The seven-game win streak is
Including 2006, in each of the four seasons Nebraska has represented the North in the Big 12 title game (also 1996, 1997, 1999), the Huskers have posted a 5-0 record in divisional games. In 2006,
The Huskers have won 43 football conference championships overall, including eight under Coach Bob Devaney and 13 under Coach Tom Osborne.
Huskers Among Leaders in AP National Titles
Notre Dame leads the nation by winning eight Associated Press national titles since 1936, with
Callahan's Huskers Continue to Perform in Classroom
Todd was a first-team selection as a junior. In addition to his academic All-America honors, Todd also received the 2007 Walter Byers Award, the highest honor bestowed on a student-athlete by the NCAA.
The selection of Todd as a second-team academic All-American gave the Husker football program 90 all-time CoSIDA Academic All-Americans, a nation-leading total. The Husker athletic program as a whole also leads the nation with 252 academic All-America selections across all teams and all sports.
Big 12 Leader in First-Team Academic All-Conference Selections
A Big 12-leading 15
23 Seniors on Track to Graduate by December
J.B. Phillips will be in good company by bowl season. A remarkable number of 23 seniors are on track to earn their undergraduate degrees by the completion of the fall semester.
Among Callahan’s first three senior classes, 53 of 64 student-athletes have graduated with several others very near completion of their degrees.
The current exhausted eligibility rate includes members of incoming classes from 1990-91 through 1999-2000. During that time, 424 of 453
NU Leads in Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll
In addition to leading the league in first-team academic All-Big 12 picks,
During the fall 2006 semester,
The Husker football program was one of 34 schools from across the nation honored this spring by the American Football Coaches Association with the 2007 Academic Achievement Award.
The 34 schools that were honored achieved a graduation rate of 70 percent or better for the 2000-01 incoming freshman class. This year marked the seventh straight year