Who Dey? — Nebraska Cornhuskers

Zac Taylor

Inside, a look at Colorado's next opponent, the Nebraska Cornhuskers.

NEBRASKA CORNHUSKERS
at Lincoln • Nov. 24 • 1:30 p.m. (MT) • ABC
Head Coach: Bill Callahan (3rd season)
2006 Record: 8-3/5-2

OFFENSE
The switch from the I-bone to the Bill Callahan/Jay Norvell West Coast offense finally began to take hold for the Cornhuskers late last season. This fall, Nebraska has proved dynamic and balanced on offense. Four of the top six total offense efforts under Callahan have come this season.

It starts with senior quarterback Zac Taylor, who last week set the Nebraska career passing yards mark (5,193). Taylor's been a model of efficiency this season, and his touchdown to interception ratio — 22 TDs, 4 picks — is enviable.

Nebraska has playmakers in the receiver positions, including junior Terrence Nunn, who leads the team with 33 catches.

Four tailbacks have rushed for at least 100 yards in a game this fall, but Colorado should expect to see a lot of two of them — Brandon Jackson and Marlon Lucky — on Friday. Jackson has emerged over the past several games.

Player to Watch: Six-foot-4 junior receiver Maurice Purify — related to former CU Buffalo Bobby Purify — has become a big-play guy at receiver during conference play. He's made seven touchdown catches this fall.

DEFENSE
Nebraska is giving up yards this season to the tune of 351 per game. That ranks them 73 in the country. The Cornhuskers have given up lots of big plays, too. Opponents have gained 25 yards or more on 27 plays this fall. (That number rises to 49 when you count kick returns). Fourteen plays have gone for 20-24 yards against Nebraska.

They're led up front by a pair of good ends in seniors Adam Carriker and Jay Moore. Moore weighs 280 and Carriker tips the scales at 295 pounds.

Linebackers Stewart Bradley, Corey McKeon and Bo Ruud have been consistent this fall.

Player to Watch: Free safety Andrew Shanle leads NU with three interceptions.

SPECIAL TEAMS
The Cornhuskers haven't generated anything special in the return game. In a statistic sure to make CU coach Dan Hawkins envious, Nebraska has attempted just seven field goals this season. In 41 trips inside the red zone, NU has attempted only four field goals (making three), and has scored 34 touchdowns.

Nebraska 2006 Statistical Leaders
PASSING: Zac Taylor 177-287-2,540 22 TD, 4 TD
RUSHING: Brandon Jackson 134-739/5.5 6 TD
RECEIVING: Terence Nunn 33-500 2 TD
TACKLES: Stewart Bradley 64
SACKS: Two tied with 4
INT: Andrew Shanle 3
PUNTING: Dan Titchener 39.7
PR: Terrence Nunn 8.5
KOR: Brandon Jackson 19.2

Prediction: Colorado 27, Nebraska 23

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