More like a 3-4 team every year:
Averages since 1993:
Big Ten Standings: Fourth (4.05)
Rankings among conference teams at close of season: 3.95
Standings to determine the Championship: Fourth (3.75)
In those seasons we've won the conference six times - more CC's than Nebraska won in that period.
Big Ten Championships since 1993:
Ohio State - 9
Wisconsin - 6
Michigan - 5
Iowa - 2
Michigan State - 1
Penn State - 1
Purdue - 1
Illinois - 1
So you can cast Wisconsin off as a "#4 or #5 team in the conference in any given year" but right now Nebraska has way more to prove in this conference than UW. As far as being a rival, I won't say that I "couldn't care less" about the Nebraska game because its a conference game and I always care but its no where near being a rivalry. Minnesota and Iowa are our historic rivals while lately the Michigan State games have been much more entertaining than the Nebraska showings... I'd even say that, at least on an emotional level, I care more about beating Illinois and Northwestern every year, so I agree with the sentiment there.
That's a Wisconsin fan's perspective, now as a Nebraska fan, why you wouldn't want us as a rival (in the sense that a person could "want" a rival), especially given the last two seasons, kind of escapes me. If we're going East/West then you're pretty much stuck with us and Iowa and if you care more about Iowa well...have fun with that.