Florida Atlantic Could Be a Handful

There are a few ingredients that are often common to teams that beat Nebraska.  You could start with a dual-threat quarterback.  The Owls' Jacquez Johnson is coming off a season where he rushed for more than 70 yards a game with 10 rushing touchdowns in addition to an average of over 170 yards passing per game with 12 passing scores.  And there's more.


Even in the best of times, say 1996, a team with standouts at defensive tackle caused there share of problems.  FAU sports a quality tandem in Brandin Bryant and Trevon Coley.  Linebacker Andrae Kirk returns as the Florida Atlantic's leading tackler and defensive MVP from a year ago.  Cornerback D'Joun Smith was a terror in the secondary with 7 interceptions, 2 forced fumbles, and 20 passes defended.  The Owls gave up an average of just 10 points per game down the stretch as they comfortably won 4 games straight to end the 2013 season.  

Offensively, FAU compliments Johnson with tall wideout William Dukes who had 6 touchdown catches.  Jay Warren was their top backup at running back a year ago and averaged nearly 5 yards per carry.  Braden Lyons is an outstanding offensive lineman as well.  Florida Atlantic also has an outstanding punter in Sean Kelly, who pinned opponents inside their 20 more than a third of the time.  

Put it all together and it doesn't look like a cakewalk for Nebraska.  The Huskers are a 23-point favorite in the game, but that seems more like a statement about the lack of respect that FAU gets from the betting public than a fair analysis of their overall ability.  Given the setting, you expect NU to prevail.  No one should be surprised, however, if the game winds up closer than 3 touchdowns.

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Comments 32 comments so far

Didnt Carl used to coach these guys and where is he now?

If FAU is a handful, woe to the rest of our season…cuz we’ll be in trouble.

“FAU compliments Johnson with tall wideout William Dukes ...”
Glad to hear that Dukes has nice things to say about Johnson.

The best way for the Huskers to put away any lingering bad vibes from last year would be to come out and beat the crap out of FAU. Just doing that could take the sour taste out of our mouths and give us something to be obtimistic about. B1G played the Minnie game from last year over the weekend - I couldn’t watch it. When is the last time we opened a season with a good looking old fashioned blowout? Seems like it’s been forever.

If this game is even semi close by the third quarter its going to be a long year.. I dont see that happening though

Well, in ‘13 FAU finished 26th in scoring D, 11th in ttl D, and 2nd in pass D.  So, they may put up a struggle into 3 qtrs or so.  Who knows, Ive never seen them play.  They beat Tulane pretty well last year, but ended up 6/6.

I say we still cover the spread @ 24 pts.

FAU won’t have Carl Pelini at the helm this year.

There is talent everywhere - but especially in places like Florida. 

At this time of the year we fans only think we know what the strengths and weaknesses of our team is, and we really don’t know much about the opponents.  We rely on analysts and journalists to tell us, but they don’t know either because you don’t know until they get out there and play.

I’ve seen teams get upset because the other OC found a weakness and went at it, and at it, and at it - and the favorite couldn’t stop it.

So, I fear almost everyone.  You don’t know what is going to happen until it does, and there are lots of surprises - which is what makes CFB awesome.

Another thing is that teams in Aug aren’t what they are going to be in Nov.  MSU was unwatchable on offense the first part of last year and then Kent, I mean, Conner, went into a phone booth and came out as Peyton Manning. 

OSU plays Navy: triple option, cut blocks on the line, and when you start sneaking into the box, they can throw it over you.  Tricky, tricky opponent.

In the end, whether its FIU, USNA, or the NAACP - win, impressively or unimpressively, and then try to get better the next week. 

It’s the best time of the year because we finally get to stop talking about football and we get to play it.  Thank you, God.

They say the state of FL could field about 20 FBS teams by itself as they supply around 16% of all CFB players.

During the entire BCS era only one northern team (Ohio State) won a national championship. All the rest were won by teams in the South; most of those (nine) by teams in Florida and Alabama.


And they all got to play their championship games down south somewhere in a bowl game. Bring them up here on Jan 1st and let us play them in our own stadium with 25 degree weather and we’ll beat the crap out of them. How many times did the Huskers have to play Miami for the nat’l championship in their own stadium.

CFB players are by and large supplied by these states, in this order:  TX, FL CA, GA, and OH.  All the other states combined amt to about 10% max and NE is about 4th from the bottom of the list.


Frankie grabs all the 2* leftovers from OH to roster the Bobs.  He goes after 2* NE too, but most those walk on @ NE—aaand nvr see the field.  I think most the walk ons should go somewhere like OH where they can play, but I guess they are living their own dreams.


Thats a pretty pathetic stat, if we is from the north, which we is.

Agree with article somewhat.  FAU in 2013 was a very weak road team.  I see the Huskers pulling away in the 3rd quarter.

Let’s take a look at their 2013 schedule.

at Miami (lost 34-6)
at East Carolina (lost 31-13)
at USF (won 28-10)
Middle Tennessee (lost 42-35)
at Rice (lost 18-14)
at UAB (won 37-23)
Marshall (lost 24-23)
at Auburn (lost 45-10)
Tulane (won 34-17)
at Southern Miss (won 41-7)
New Mexico State (won 55-10)
FIU (won 21-6)


Yes fau will be a handful. I hope we can escape with a Win. Great article

Know I am getting old, but I just don’t remember it quite that way. Know that all the Orange bowl appearances were by Devaney or Osborne coached teams – think it was about 16 times, and Huskers won at least half of them. Had no trouble beating LSU every time they met and believe they broke even playing Alabama. The only teams that really had the best of the Huskers were Bobby Bowden’s Florida State teams – and Miami. Played Miami four times, only once for NC in 1995 and Huskers won that one. Never did beat FSU in the Orange Bowl.
- don’t know why my earlier post only read h instead of husker in korea

Miami beat Skers for the NC back in ‘83 also.  The infamous 2 pt fail.

Mia also beat us in the Orange in ‘91 and they got the NC—Rose too in ‘01.

TDogg says: “CFB players are by and large supplied by these states, in this order:  TX, FL CA, GA, and OH.  All the other states combined amt to about 10% max and NE is about 4th from the bottom of the list.”

And that’s it right there.  There are schools that develop talent and have some good stretches, but if your guys are bigger, faster, and stronger than my guys, your guys are almost always going to win.

I look at it this way: USC, UCLA, and Oregon are going to pull the top several dozen players out of CA.  Texas and Texas A&M are going to get another several dozen out of TX.  Ohio State largely gets its pick out of OH. And then there are a half dozen SEC schools that fight over the top kids in the SE.  But they can’t get them all. 

I think the key is facilities.  The B1G schools that are having trouble attracting the great players left after the locals take their pick need to have a hook, a wow factor, or something to get a kid to say, “Heck, I’m going to Lincoln” rather than a regional second tier PAC, SEC, etc. school.  We can’t offer weather, and very few elite football players have adademics as their top concern.  The B1G needs to have comfort and style in practice and living facilities that will get those players there.

When we get talent, depth,size, and speed on a par with SEC schools, we will beat the shit out them.  Until then, we hope in player development, coaching, motivation, and other BS like that rarely trumps talent, depth, size, and speed.

Well, Detroits population has gone down by around 60% the last 30 yrs whereas the population of FL has probably doubled—stuff like that.  There’re all kinda quality ‘parity’ teams now that didn’t used to exist:  OR, Baylor, Okie St, Stanford, Louisville, TCU, UCF(the latest), pulling away good players from the former traditional northern powers.  Even Wisconsin got good!  IT AIN’T RIGHT!

So, Brasky, OSU, MI, PSU, ND, Sparta are gonna have to start representin’  real quick like or this thing is gonna get outta hand.

Gotta win the big one.


Other than Nebraska, what stadium would you like to watch a game at?

NE@ OU comes to mind—as long as we win.
Uh, Rose Bowl works for me.  I’d also like to go see us best PSU again in their house just to watch all those white pom poms go idle.

Still have some unfinished biz w @ FSU and @ USC, IMO.

LSU would be a good environs too.  Of course, beating Bama anywhere would take the cake.

Beating Mizzou @ the Zoo was always a good time.  Maybe we can get that on the schedule.

Not a fan of IA/Kinnick, they always make it a boring game.

I think NE and tOSU’s Memorial Stadiums had the same original architect, judging by appearence.

I think this far in to the B1G, I’ve got enough of a sample size to scratch out a prioritized ‘hate’ list:
1)Wiscy(clear #1)
2) IA
3) jNU
3) PSU(tie)
4) MI(everybody hates MI)
5) MN(cuz of last yr)
6) lN(if we ever play them, I’m sure I will hate them)
7)-12) Those teams I can nvr rember their names.

13) Sparta(I actually have always liked thede guys as long as we beat them)
14) tOSU(I’m ok w them but dont like Urbs)

Das it!

Oh, no games @ the Smurf turf either, thanks.

I was thinking that if there was one stadium I would love to go to would be Notre Dame, for a big time game like Ohio State or Michigan, but just to go soak up the tradition.

BTW, I absolutely hate the irish but respect their tradition (and not their tradition of losing bowl games).

I get what they have going.

I think I saw Touchdown Jesus fron I-80 one time.  Thats about the extent if my interest in the Irish Catholics.  They are a product of marketing, having their own station going back to the Ara Parsegian days.

I’m ok w Brian Kelly, though, I might riute for them against Bama or USC, depending.

You’re mentioning Ara Parseghian, and your earlier comment about the 1983 Huskers Orange Bowl loss, reminds me again of the differences between the two head coaches and their coaching philosophies – Parseghian not trying to win and settling for a tie in order to gain a National Championship, and Osborne willing to pass up a chance for a sure National Championship because the Huskers were playing to win the game, not settle for a tie. Too bad they missed the 2 point conversion, but Osborne gained a ton of well-deserved respect in my mind.

You have got to be joking about FAU being a handful. My goodness, if this is true, it’s going to be one LOOOOOOOOOOOOOONG season. I really hope you are wrong sir. I predict Armstrong having a nice refresher game, throwing 2 TD and leading Huskers to 21 point route.

Well, you were right on in your predictions that Armstrong would throw 2 TD and that the Huskers would win with a rout of the Owls, but don’t think you, or I, or anyone else truly believed it would be by 48 points. Well done Big Red - just keep it up for the rest of the season.

Huskerinkorea - i fully expected BIG RED to whoop that azz. We have by far more talent and depth. Better coaches, home field,  28 game opening season win (29 now) I just saw no way FAU was going to keep up with our offense. We are loaded with fire power!  Just need a few minor tweaks with our defense. Go Big Red!!!

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