Nebraska Cornhuskers – 2012
2012 Huskers Talent and Win Trends
No good news here. Recruiting has been on a downward trend since 2008. At that time the Huskers were above the blue BCS berth line (21 of 22 winners/losers of last 11 NCG above it) and now they are a second tier team where 9-3 is a very solid year. Outside of 2011, Pelini and staff, have recruited below the Nebraska moving average. With Bo Pelini’s inability to win more games than predicted in the CFBMatrix, it will be several years, save a lightning in a bottle season, before the Huskers can expect 10 or more wins in Lincoln.
A declining talent base is a terrible trend in a recruit to win, not win to recruit environment. It is important to have deep talent as it pushes the depth chart and especially starters that can become complacent and lax without a challenge.
The Huskers return huge numbers of returning starters for 2012. But as I have already shown, that metric is very overrated, if not worthless, in AQ football. The biggest number is the starters on defense and the two kickers. Those may make a winning difference in more than one game.
Coach Pelini has been awesome in the CFBMatrix system. The College Football Matrix pre-season Huskers Game Prediction Accuracy is 38-10 (79.2%) in the last 4 years. Vegas Straight Up CFB accuracy 2011 – 75.83%.
Pelini has only won 4 games in which I picked him to lose 6 months before the season started (35-4) so expecting him to go over that average is pushing outside his trends. If he is going to get upset it will most likely be a home where he has 2 upset wins and 4 upset losses in his tenure.
2012 Schedule Breakdown
Right out the chute a home trap game. It would be very easy to look past a very dangerous Southern Miss team. They have the best talent of the non-AQ teams. Now that they are relieved of Fedora, who drug them through the bayou mud, maybe they will start living up to their potential. This is number three of three home games that are a Pelini special. Look ahead to playing UCLA and season could be shot by September 2nd. The road trip to UCLA still holds a potential for a win with the new coaches in Westwood, but CBP rarely puts up a road upset win. The Huskers then go on a short 3 game winning streak leading up to their trip and subsequent loss to a much more talented Buckeye team. Going into the bye 4-2.
The Huskers catch an upset special break going to Northwestern where Fitz is just average to his talent. They win that game but it is a trap game with Michigan coming in the following week. Traveling to Michigan State is slated as a loss. Not because of talent, but because of the road field adjustment and the MSU coaching effect. Sitting at 5-4 with 3 to play.
The Huskers hosting Penn State is a really big game and easy to overlook. PSU has equal talent but as we all know a lot of issues swirling around as distractions. The Matrix give the edge to Nebraska, but this is the #1 game on the Pelini list of upset specials in Lincoln for 2012. Finish it out. Win. Win. Win. Gophers should be no trouble and Iowa has been under coached 4 of the last 5 years. 8-4, outside the top 25 by one win and trip to the Holiday Bowl to play Utah.
- Dave Bartoo, The CFBMatrix & your Anti-Homer Follow @cfbmatrix email firstname.lastname@example.org