The college football season is less than a month away. Nebraska was 9-4 a season ago, but it was a disappointing end to a promising beginning with a 30-13 loss in the Capital One Bowl. A season ago a lot was made about this new look Nebraska offense under first year offensive coordinator Tim Beck. Of their 904 plays, Nebraska ran the ball 611 times. In year two of this offense the Huskers are hoping for a more balanced look.
"We have a great receiving crew," said junior wide receiver Tim Marlowe. "Two of the best tight ends in the country. We're just trying to utilize all our weapons. Our running game is amazing with Rex and Ameer and Taylor running the ball. We know that. Our offensive line is very physical but we know to be one of the best offenses in the country we have to be more 50-50."
The man under center, Taylor Martinez, is entering his third year as Nebraska's quarterback. He completed just 56% of his passes a year ago and dedicated himself to improving in the off season and his teammates have taken notice.
"Last year he was only a sophomore," said Marlowe. "There's not that many starting sophomore quarterbacks in the country, so this year as a junior, all through spring ball and the summer he's just growing as a passer. With his footwork, timing with his reads, he knows when to take risks, when not to. He's utilizing his running backs out of the backfield more and getting completions. Just staying positive. Getting positive yards and getting the ball out quick and avoiding sacks."
"Just because this is my first time being is a 'second year offense,' I think this year is going to be -- the receivers are really good, the tight ends, running backs. I actually know where to go with the ball now. I've learned a lot," said Martinez.
And a completion percentage number Taylor Martinez believes he needs to meet in order to enable this team to be even more successful than it was a year ago?
"Seventy percent or above," said Martinez.
After meeting with the media, the gates of Memorial Stadium opened and 5,500 fans filed in for Fan Day. It's a chance to rub shoulders and elbows and get autographs of their favorite Huskers. Also, an opportunity for Husker fans to get their first look at the alternate uniforms Nebraska will wear when they host Wisconsin this season. Nebraska's first practice is set for 11:00 AM on Saturday. The season kicks off September 1st when Nebraska hosts Southern Mississippi.
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