Nebraska Preview: Cornhuskers at #8 Ohio State
Multiple National Championships and 1,800 wins between the Cornhuskers and Buckeyes over the years.
But in 2018, these two teams are in very different places.
While number-eight Ohio State is battling for yet another appearance in college football's playoff, Nebraska is struggling through the lowest of lows in program history.
The Huskers (2-6/1-4 Big Ten) have just two wins in their first eight games of 2018, while the Buckeyes (7-1/4-1) have won 15 of their last 17 regular season games.
But this is an Ohio State team that has faced some challenges over the past few weeks.
Three weeks ago, Minnesota played the Buckeyes tough before Ohio State won 30-14 and then OSU went to Purdue and was upset 49-20 by the Boilermakers.
Combine those two performances with last week's bye week and it's safe to say Urban Meyer's team will be anxious to play well against Nebraska this week.
The Buckeyes have a potent offense that leads the Big Ten Conference in scoring, passing and total offense. Redshirt sophomore quarterback Dwayne Haskins has OSU throwing the ball more this year. He's amassed 30 touchdowns and more than 2,800 yards through the air. Parris Campbell and K.J. Hill have combined for 11 scores and more than 100 receptions.
That will be a test for the Nebraska secondary, which allows the 20th most passing yards in the country.
The Ohio State running game is still formidable. J.K. Dobbins and Mike Weber combined for 188 yards on the ground versus the Husker defense last year.
Defensively, the Buckeyes are number-two in the league but are without linebacker Nick Bosa, who is done with an injury. The defensive line is attempting to pick up the slack with Chase Young and Dre'Mont Jones combining for ten sacks so far this year.
One thing to watch for in this game - Nebraska and Ohio State are two of the three most penalized teams in the Big Ten. The two average a combined 157 yards in penalties per game.
Kickoff in Columbus is 11:00 AM, Saturday. You can listen to the game live on ESPN 99.1.
Last week, the Cornhuskers made it back-to-back victories for the first time in more than a year thanks at a 45-9 win over Bethune-Cookman of the FCS.
In the make-up game for the September 1 weather-related cancellation against Akron, Nebraska took control early thanks to a pair of Adrian Martinez to Stanley Morgan first-quarter touchdown passes, a Divine Ozigbo scoring run, and a J.D. Speilman punt return for a touchdown to go up 28-3 after 15 minutes.
Martinez continued his red-hot play going 15-of-22 for 213 yards and two scores. In the past two weeks, he's completing 78 percent of his throws for five touchdowns.
Defensively Deontai Williams had a fumble recovery and interception, while lineman Peyton Newell grabbed a pick as well.
I talked with the 'Voice of the Huskers' Greg Sharpe about Bethune-Cookman win and the match-up with Ohio State: