Nebraska Football: 2018 Spring Game Preview
The annual Spring Football Game at Nebraska is always a big deal for Cornhusker fans, but the 2018 game is going to be the biggest yet for a program that knows how to fill a stadium.
Saturday's (April 21) game at Memorial Stadium in Lincoln is officially a sell-out - the first for a Spring Game in school history.
And while a lot of attention will be paid to the players wearing red and white Saturday, a large contingent of the 90,000 in attendance are there to see one man - new Nebraska head coach Scott Frost.
Frost is back in Lincoln 21 years after leading the Cornhuskers to a National Championship as a player. He's hoping for the same kind of success as a head coach.
Since replacing Mike Riley, Frost, a Nebraska native, has been very outspoken about the deterioration of the once proud program, laying the feet squarely at previous athletic directors who tried to get away from the 'Nebraska Way' of doing things.
Frost's first team in Lincoln will feature a mixture of veteran players and highly touted newcomers.
Offensively, Nebraska concludes Spring ball with no clear cut #1 at quarterback. Redshirt freshman Tristan Gebbia, true freshman Adrian Martinez, and sophomore Andrew Bunch have all been taking snaps with the first team offense. Noah Vedral - who came with Coach Frost from Central Florida is trying to get a waiver from the NCAA to play this season, otherwise he'll have to sit out a year.
At running back, Mikale Wilbon and Devine Ozigbo are back. Wilbon is expected to thrive in Frost's up tempo offensive attack.
The Huskers have some depth at wide receiver with their top two pass catchers - Stanley Morgan and JD Spielman - back. Spielman will miss the Spring Game with a knee injury. Jack Stoll returns at tight end after catching eight passes last season. Transfer Mike Williams is expected to make an impact in 2018.
Up front, the Huskers have a trio of seniors on the offensive line, while Sioux Falls native Matt Farniok is expected to be a starter heading into his sophomore year. His brother Will may be heading for a redshirt season.
On defense there are fewer question marks.
Carlos and Khalil Davis, Freedom Akinmoladun, Mick Stoltenberg, and Deontre Thomas anchor a solid defensive line with redshirt freshman Damion Daniels turning a lot of heads in Spring Practice. Stoltenberg won't play Saturday.
Luke Gifford and Decrick return at linebacker, although Gifford will miss the game with an injury.
The secondary has veteran players returning in Antonio Reed, Aaron Williams, Eric Lee, and Lamar Jackson, but is looking to build some depth behind those four.
As for the kicking game, Caleb Lightbourn will handle punting an kickoff duties, while true freshman Barret Pickering will be kicking field goals. He was the 4th best high school kicker in the nation last season.
Kickoff is 11:00 AM, Saturday in Lincoln.
I talked with the 'Voice of the Cornhuskers', Greg Sharpe, about what to watch for: