Northern Illinois (@6.5) vs Nebraska (@1.11)

Our Prediction:

Nebraska will win

Northern Illinois – Nebraska Match Prediction | 14-09-2019 20:00

Northern Illinois isnt an offensive juggernaut by any means, but theres no reason to expect the Cornhuskers defense to keep them out of the end zone. That really makes it tough to cover a big spread like this, as they are likely to allow points late even if they get up big early. I know playing the Ducks skews the numbers some, but its hard to ignore that Nebraskas defense ranks 123rd in the country, giving up 531.5 ypg.

Put up against a dangerous Oregon offense, it crumbled, allowing 42 points in 30 minutes. The Tulane transfer was hyped by many reliable sources, but his performance on Saturday left me dismayed. For one, the 3-4 defensive scheme needs a lot of work. The Huskers put up more of a fight than I anticipated this, but there were still a variety of problems presented in Eugene. Secondly, Tanner Lee isnt living up to expectations.

The other injury to keep an eye on is Nebraska running back Tre Bryant, who left their last game. He rushed for 192 yards in the opener and finished with 107 versus the Ducks. Bryant has been a huge part of the offense. I could see the Cornhuskers really struggling to finish off drives with points if Bryant doesnt play or is limited.

Nebraska Games & Results

Nebraska is coming off a loss and returning home, so the Huskers should have an inspired effort. Nebraska, on the other hand, is 12-5-1 against the spread in their last 18 non-conference games. The Huskies are just 2-5-1 against the spread in their last eight non-conference games. With NIU using a backup QB, I sense the Huskies wont move the ball much and Nebraska should be able to score on the Huskies if Boston College put up 23 points on them. Northern Illinois is hitting the road for the first time this season.

While the argument could be made that Tanner Lee couldnt have avoided two of the interceptions against him, the amount of other mistakes still offers a valid reason to be concerned for this Nebraska football team. The defense was awful in the first half, and the offense had issues in the second half. The Huskers had major issues against Oregon. Theres no denying that.

All that said, they do get Kyle Pugh back, who can hopefully replicate Johnsons productivity and still have one of, if not the best, defense in the MAC. It will depend on how well the running game goes this season. The offense should be as productive, if not hopefully more, as there is no quarterback battle this season and Marcus Childers has had a season to grow.

Of course, a lot could change between now and December and the Huskies will need to keep Childers healthy and upright in order to keep the offense going. The line is strong enough to allow for a solid rushing attack as well but well see what kind of production they get from Marcus Jones, Tre Harbison, and the others.

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Give me theNorthern Illinois Huskies and the free points. The Northern Illinois Huskies have split their last 10 games ATS when a double-digit underdog.The Nebraska Cornhuskers have failed to cover eight of their last 10 games as a double-digit favorite.Northern Illinois is far from a pushover, as it's constantly been one of the better teams in the MAC, and the Huskies took Utah down to the wire last year and beat Nebraska on the road in 2017 as 10.5-point underdogs.The Nebraska Cornhuskers haven't looked great through two games and it's fair if you want to start holding Scott Frost's feet to the fire.

Andy: There might not be as much cutting and beer bottle fighting among fans as one might expect when Kentucky & South Carolina types get to pissing about college football. This will calm the visitors and Lamar will unload again and steal one in a shootout. When Climpson folk show up tossing rocks and vomiting, the local & violent constabulary will drag them into alleys and basement cells and club them bloody till everyone gets the message. But Louisville folks strike me as more genteel type who use that lilting southern accent while holding their horses in higher regard than the minority house and stable staff.

Bryant rushed for over 100 yards in the first two games of the season. Tre Bryants injury in the fourth quarter against the Ducks is also cause for concern. While the extent of his injury isnt known, it doesnt take a genius to figure out the Huskers offense will struggle to move the ball as efficiently without Bryant. He has quickly established himself as a leading force on the Huskers offense.