LINCOLN, Neb. - Nebraska (8-1, 4-1) only won by 21 points - sound the alarms.
It wasn’t always pretty, but Without the nation’s leading rusher for much of the contest, Nebraska held Purdue (3-6, 1-4) to just a touchdown a half, to beat the Boilermakers 35-14 on Saturday afternoon.
Nebraska’s offense didn’t play well. The players would be the first to admit it.
Quarterback Tommy Armstrong struggled when the Huskers went to the air.
The offensive line couldn’t get a push in the run game.
Receivers ran wrong routes at various times.
Once again there were snapping issues.
Name a problem the offense could have, you probably saw it on Saturday afternoon, but it’s easy to forget, Nebraska won by 21.
"I think we are fine. We didn't lose against Purdue today,” said running back Imani Cross. “We beat those guys. I think we should be happy about that. Did we make mistakes at times? Yes. But we won the game. We are going to watch film and we are going to prepare for Wisconsin."
Pelini called the offensive performance “sloppy.”
“That’s about it,” said Pelini. “Myself and the coaches and hopefully the football team, I hope they feel the same way. You have to get a little bit of a sense of being a perfectionist and knowing that you have to keep pushing if you really want to reach your potential. I think that's a challenge we have over this last month. And that's what we need to carry us through. We've got a heckuva challenge ahead of us in the next couple of weeks, as with the other two opponents we have coming in.”
While the offense struggled to get much going, the Nebraska defense might have had one of their best performances of the season.
After struggling so many times early in the season to get first-series stops, Nebraska forced four straight three-an-outs to start the game.
“I thought it was critical,” said offensive coordinator John Papuchis. “We did exactly what wanted to when it came to controlling the field position and having opportunities to score.”
Despite allowing Purdue quarterback Austin Appleby to complete just 18-of-46 passes, Nebraska didn’t bring many blitzes from the second level on Saturday. Instead, using just their front four defensive lineman.
“What we saw, going into our game, most of their explosive plays gains came against pressure,” said Papuchis. “We felt like, if this turned into base versus base, we are going to come out on top.”
Big Red Report will have much more on the Nebraska 35-14 win over the coming hours.