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**2021 Previews: ESPN/Bill Connelly SP+ Big Ten West preview **


Saunders

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1 hour ago, Saunders said:

Yup. I was shocked to see the Win Expectancy so high for that, and the Northwestern games.

 

It's funny to me how NW is picked to finish 3rd in the West in the Unofficial B1G Media Days poll, which would probably need to be in the neighborhood of an 8-4 season. And in this preview, they're picked to win 5 games. NW loses a ton on defense, has to replace a D Coordinator, has to replace a QB, and his 126th out of 127 in returning production. Not sure how the B1G Media rationalizes that into a 3rd place West finish. 

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By far one of my favorite previews out there, but it's locked behind ESPN+. It's very in depth, so I grabbed the high level info for this thread.

Maybe I'm in the minority here but I think we would have handily beat Illinois last year if AM is starting. Receivers were running wide open downfield all day and McCaffrey was incapable of getting th

Hear me out.  They are going to be 5-1 heading into that Michigan.  It's at home.  Last meeting UM won like 62-3.  A lot of players on our team where there, and probably circled this game. I really th

2 hours ago, J-MAGIC said:

Based on the win probabilities we have about a 37 percent chance to beat all four of Illinois, Northwestern, Buffalo, and MSU to get to 5-1. Seems like what happens in these four games is going to be the key to our season. Win them all and eight wins are on the table. Drop one or two and you're flirting with bowl eligibility.  

 

I think we just need to win 1/2 between Northwestern & Michigan State. That would still be setting us up quite well.

 

Then if we beat Buffalo, Fordham, Illinois, Purdue, and Minnesota, that's 6 wins.

 

Then one out of two against Iowa & Wisconsin, and there's a minimum of a 7-5 season. That's what we need to turn around the Suck Streak.

 

 

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1 hour ago, teachercd said:

I think what it shows is just how bad Illinois is, that was a huge upset last year and there was no reason for it to have happened.

 

NU's DL is geared to stop the run now, they are massive upfront.  If Illinois is not average over 4 yards a carry for the game, it will be a blowout.

Agreed.  And I'm sure the defense and offense wants a little payback. 

 

Seriously, this sched isn't as difficult as we hear it is.  I still think this is a 9 win season.  And here they are :)

 

Fordham (99%)
Buffalo (86%)
Northwestern (85%)
at Illinois (79%)
Purdue (67%)
 at Michigan State (65%) - (only because it's a road game)
Michigan (53%) - (Should be closer to 60%)
at Minnesota (45%)
Iowa (43%)  (Lincoln SR Day / Super SR Day)

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1 hour ago, Fru said:

 

It's funny to me how NW is picked to finish 3rd in the West in the Unofficial B1G Media Days poll, which would probably need to be in the neighborhood of an 8-4 season. And in this preview, they're picked to win 5 games. NW loses a ton on defense, has to replace a D Coordinator, has to replace a QB, and his 126th out of 127 in returning production. Not sure how the B1G Media rationalizes that into a 3rd place West finish. 

The big thing with Northwestern is that they will probably have a regression to the mean, in terms of their record. It happened in 2019, they won more games than they probably should have in 2020, and 2021 will likely bring a record back closer to .500. Northwestern has so many close games, it’s near impossible to win those close games at the same percentage, year over year. 

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1 hour ago, Fru said:

 

It's funny to me how NW is picked to finish 3rd in the West in the Unofficial B1G Media Days poll, which would probably need to be in the neighborhood of an 8-4 season. And in this preview, they're picked to win 5 games. NW loses a ton on defense, has to replace a D Coordinator, has to replace a QB, and his 126th out of 127 in returning production. Not sure how the B1G Media rationalizes that into a 3rd place West finish. 

I think it's just the reverse of underrating them. They wont because of a team full of old guys, and a great defense. They don't have that this year. And I think it's going to show.

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Just now, admo said:

 

Agreed.  And I'm sure the defense and offense wants a little payback. 

 

Seriously, this sched isn't as difficult as we hear it is.  I still think this is a 9 win season.  And here they are :)

 

Fordham (99%)
Buffalo (86%)
Northwestern (85%)
at Illinois (79%)
Purdue (67%)
 at Michigan State (65%) - (only because it's a road game)
Michigan (53%) - (Should be closer to 60%)
at Minnesota (45%)
Iowa (43%)  (Lincoln SR Day / Super SR Day)

So, 3-4 games which you count as wins, the odds have near 50% win probability? That’s a tall order to win that many 50-50 games. 

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11 minutes ago, ColoradoHusk said:

So, 3-4 games which you count as wins, the odds have near 50% win probability? That’s a tall order to win that many 50-50 games. 

Hear me out.  They are going to be 5-1 heading into that Michigan.  It's at home.  Last meeting UM won like 62-3.  A lot of players on our team where there, and probably circled this game. I really think we got this game.

 

Then it becomes 6-1 - Huskers ranked, momentum, and a road trip to Minnesota.  After beating them, Huskers will be 7-1, get a bye week before Purdue (8-1), followed by another bye week after Ohio State (8-2).  Which gives the Huskers 2 weeks to heal and prepare for Wisconsin (road game).  That leaves Iowa, final game for seniors in Lincoln.  Win number 9.

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3 minutes ago, admo said:

Hear me out.  They are going to be 5-1 heading into that Michigan.  It's at home.  Last meeting UM won like 62-3.  A lot of players on our team where there, and probably circled this game. I really think we got this game.

 

Then it becomes 6-1 - Huskers ranked, momentum, and a road trip to Minnesota.  After beating them, Huskers will be 7-1, get a bye week before Purdue (8-1), followed by another bye week after Ohio State (8-2).  Which gives the Huskers 2 weeks to heal and prepare for Wisconsin (road game).  That leaves Iowa, final game for seniors in Lincoln.  Win number 9.

I would love for that to happen, but I just don't see how NU goes from winning so few close (50-50) games during the Frost years to winning nearly every single 50-50 game.  Now, there is regression to the mean potential on the other end for NU, but in my mind NU will still lose 2-3 toss up games this year.  NU has 2 nearly guaranteed losses in OU and Ohio State.  That means NU would need to be 9-1 in their remaining games to go 9-3.  I just don't see that happening.

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1 minute ago, ColoradoHusk said:

I would love for that to happen, but I just don't see how NU goes from winning so few close (50-50) games during the Frost years to winning nearly every single 50-50 game.  Now, there is regression to the mean potential on the other end for NU, but in my mind NU will still lose 2-3 toss up games this year.

Here's the thing with toss up games.  They are toss up games right now....before fall camp ever even starts.  Once the season starts and everyone gets a few games under our belt, those toss up games COULD be adjusted either way.  Let's say we come out and start 5-1 and Michigan and Minnesota really struggle.  Those games might not be toss up games at that point.

 

I would be walking on cloud 9 if we started 5-1.  I would be on cloud 10 if we were actually competitive against OU in the one loss.

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Just now, BigRedBuster said:

Here's the thing with toss up games.  They are toss up games right now....before fall camp ever even starts.  Once the season starts and everyone gets a few games under our belt, those toss up games COULD be adjusted either way.  Let's say we come out and start 5-1 and Michigan and Minnesota really struggle.  Those games might not be toss up games at that point.

 

I would be walking on cloud 9 if we started 5-1.  I would be on cloud 10 if we were actually competitive against OU in the one loss.

But even if NU were to start 5-1, Michigan has more talent than NU and Minnesota has similar talent than NU.  That's what makes those games toss-up games.  A strong start may give NU positive thoughts going into those games, but once those games start the previously-played games mean nothing to the game being played that day.

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3 minutes ago, ColoradoHusk said:

I would love for that to happen, but I just don't see how NU goes from winning so few close (50-50) games during the Frost years to winning nearly every single 50-50 game.  Now, there is regression to the mean potential on the other end for NU, but in my mind NU will still lose 2-3 toss up games this year.  NU has 2 nearly guaranteed losses in OU and Ohio State.  That means NU would need to be 9-1 in their remaining games to go 9-3.  I just don't see that happening.

Understandable.  I'm fine with the fan base and media saying it's a 6 or 7 win team, based on the previous few seasons, the schedule, the league, etc.  Keeping the hopes are bar low.  It's really up to this team and staff to make it a 9 win season.  I think they can do it.  Ultimately it's up to them (with our home crowd bringing the extra juice).  Should be a fun season.

 

Don't forget though.  Huskers take care of the home field (6 out of 7 games).  Leaves them with road games Illinois, Michigan State, Minnesota to get 9 wins.  It's totally a reachable goal IMO.

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3 minutes ago, ColoradoHusk said:

But even if NU were to start 5-1, Michigan has more talent than NU and Minnesota has similar talent than NU.  That's what makes those games toss-up games.  A strong start may give NU positive thoughts going into those games, but once those games start the previously-played games mean nothing to the game being played that day.

It does compared to how those teams started and are playing.

 

Nebraska has better talent than Wisconsin and Iowa.  There are people who claim one or both of those are worse than a toss up.

 

How the team is playing, means a lot as you get into the season.

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4 minutes ago, admo said:

Understandable.  I'm fine with the fan base and media saying it's a 6 or 7 win team, based on the previous few seasons, the schedule, the league, etc.  Keeping the hopes are bar low.  It's really up to this team and staff to make it a 9 win season.  I think they can do it.  Ultimately it's up to them (with our home crowd bringing the extra juice).  Should be a fun season.

 

Don't forget though.  Huskers take care of the home field (6 out of 7 games).  Leaves them with road games Illinois, Michigan State, Minnesota to get 9 wins.  It's totally a reachable goal IMO.

The crappy part about NU over the past 6 years is that NU hasn't taken care of home field, and has had little success on the road.  I just don't see how that trend magically reverses itself to the other end of the spectrum in one year.

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10 minutes ago, ColoradoHusk said:

Michigan has more talent than NU and Minnesota has similar talent than NU. 

Whoa a minute.  I missed this gem before.

 

How can you say Michigan has better talent than Nebraska only to then claim Minnesota has similar talent than Nebraska?

 

Since 2018, our class rankings in the B1G have been 4,4,4,5

Michigan is 3,2,2,2

Minnesota is 7,10,9,8

 

So, how can you say Michigan is so much more talented only to have Minnesota and Nebraska similar?

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