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2008 Nebraska Cornhuskers Season
Nebraska QB Joe Ganz
Nebraska QB Joe Ganz
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Jan 18, 2009


2008 Nebraska Cornhuskers Season, Game Recaps, Scores and Reviews



2008 Nebraska Cornhuskers

Jan. 1
2009 Gator Bowl
Nebraska 26 … Clemson 21

Nebraska was awful early and great late. Clemson took a 14-3 lead into halftime on a 28-yard fumble return for a score from DeAndre McDaniel and a 25-yard Aaron Kelly touchdown catch, and then the Huskers turned it on with four straight scores in the third quarter. Clemson got a 41-yard Jacoby Ford touchdown catch to answer a brilliant 17-yard Nate Swift scoring grab, but the Huskers scored the final 16 points of the game. Todd Peterson kicked off the run with a 19-yard touchdown catch, and then it was all defense with Clemson holding the Huskers to three Alex Henery field goals, a 28-yarder late in the third proving to be the game-winner, and Nebraska finishing with just four rushing yards allowed. Clemson had the ball late with one last shot, but its drive stalled on the Nebraska 26 with a sack of Cullen Harper, a drop in the end zone by C.J. Spiller, and a misfire to Jacoby Ford.
Player of the Game: Nebraska DT Ndamukong Suh made eight tackles, two sacks, four tackles for loss, and came up with a blocked kick.
Stat Leaders: Clemson - Passing: Cullen Harper, 17-37, 206 yds, 2 TD, 2 INT
Rushing: James Davis, 12-26. Receiving: Aaron Kelly, 6-74
Nebraska - Passing: Joe Ganz, 19-36, 236 yds, 2 TD, 1 INT
Rushing:
Quentin Castille, 18-125. Receiving: Todd Peterson, 4-96, 1 TD
Inside The Box Score ... 5 Thoughts on the Gator Bowl …Rushing yards: Nebraska 125 – Clemson 4 … Third down conversions: Nebraska 7-of-19 – Clemson 3-of-16 … Red Zone Scores: Nebraska 3-of-3 – Clemson 1-of-3 … Sacks: Nebraska 5-for-44 yards – Clemson 0-for-0 … Clemson’s Chris Clemons led all defenders with 10 tackles.

- 2008 Husker Preview
- 2007 Husker Season

2008 Schedule
CFN Prediction:
7-5
2008 Record: 9-4

Aug. 30 Western Mich W 47-24
Sept. 6 San Jose State W 35-12
Sept. 13 New Mexico St W 38-7
Sept. 20 OPEN DATE
Sept. 27 Virginia Tech L 35-30
Oct. 4 Missouri L 52-17
Oct. 11 at Tex Tech L 37-31 OT
Oct. 18 at Iowa State W 35-7
Oct. 25 Baylor W 32-20
Nov. 1 at Oklahoma L 62-28
Nov. 8 Kansas W 45-35
Nov. 15 at Kansas St W 56-28
Nov. 22 OPEN DATE
Nov. 28 Colorado W 41-30
Gator Bowl
Jan. 1 Clemson W 26-21

2007 Schedule
CFN Prediction:
9-3
2007 Record: 5-7

Sept. 1 Nevada W 52-10
Sept. 8 at Wake Forest W 20-17
Sept. 15 USC L 49-31
Sept. 22
Ball State W 41-40
Sept. 29 Iowa State W 35-17
Oct. 6 at Missouri L 41-6
Oct. 13
Oklahoma State L 45-14
Oct. 20 Texas A&M L 36-14
Oct. 27 at Texas L 28-25
Nov. 3
at Kansas L 76-39
Nov. 10 Kansas State W 73-31
Nov. 23 at Colorado L 65-51

Nov. 28
Nebraska 40 … Colorado 31
In a tight battle that turned into a surprising shootout, Nebraska PK Alex Henery saved the day with a 57-yard bomb of a field goal with 1:43 to play to give the Huskers the lead. The defense put the game away as Ndamukong Suh had the ball come right to him on a sack, and he took it 30 yards for a score. Henery finished with four field goals on the day, while Joe Ganz threw first half touchdown passes from two yards out to Nate Swift and 53 yards away to Mike McNeill. Colorado got up early with a 68-yard touchdown catch from Riar Geer and got scoring runs from 36 and four yards out from Demetrius Sumler, but it failed to score over the final 20 minutes. The Buffs’ biggest highlight was a Jimmy Smith interception for a touchdown on an over-the-shoulder flip fake on a Nebraska field goal attempt .
Player of the game: Nebraska PK Alex Henery hit all four of his field goal attempts connecting from 35, 27, 37 and 57 yards away.
Stat Leaders: Colorado - Passing: Cody Hawkins, 14-24, 249 yds, 1 TD, 3 INT
Rushing: Demetrius Sumler, 9-65, 2 TD. Receiving: Scotty McKnight, 4-58
Nebraska - Passing: Joe Ganz, 19-26, 229 yds, 2 TD
Rushing: Roy Helu, 25-166. Receiving: Roy Helu, 5-49
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... It might not have been a pretty win over Colorado with a few big mistakes and drive after drive that stalled, but the Huskers were able to come through late and, of course, there was Alex Henery to save the day. His 57-yard field goal will go down in Nebraska lore, and then the defense came up with the big play to put the game away. Joe Ganz closed out his Nebraska regular season career with a nice day, but he had to take too many sacks. Offensively, this was Roy Helu’s day as he led the team in both rushing and receiving, grinding out five-yard run after five-yard run.

Nov. 15
Nebraska 56 … Kansas State 28
Joe Ganz threw two touchdown passes and he ran for two more as Nebraska rolled past Kansas State for the win. The Wildcats got off to a hot start with Courtney Herndon returning a Ganz pass 57 yards for a touchdown, but Nebraska responded with a one-yard Roy Helu touchdown run and a 37-yard dash from Quentin Castille. Helu finished with two touchdown runs while Todd Peterson and Mike McNeill caught touchdown passes on the way to a 35-14 halftime lead. Nebraska amassed 610 yards of total offense to KSU’s 247.
Player of the game: Nebraska QB Joe Ganz completed 16-of-25 passes for 270 yards and two touchdowns with an interception, and he ran 11 times for 95 yards and two touchdowns
Stat Leaders: Kansas State - Passing: Josh Freeman, 7-18, 114 yds, 1 TD
Rushing: Lamark Brown, 13-49. Receiving: Ernie Pierce, 4-94, 1 TD
Nebraska - Passing: Joe Ganz, 16-25, 270 yds, 2 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Joe Ganz, 11-95, 2 TD. Receiving: Todd Peterson, 4-47, 1 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... Nebraska solidified its place as the No. 2 team in the Big 12 North behind Missouri with a commanding win over Kansas State. Everything worked as the running game cranked out 340 yards with six different players rumbling at will, while Joe Ganz was nearly flawless in leading drive after drive. While there haven’t been the elite wins to truly fire up the fan base, a win over Colorado would make it eight wins before going bowling. That would be a very, very nice first step for the Bo Pelini era.


Nov. 8
Nebraska 45 … Kansas 35
Roy Helu Jr. ran for second half scores from 10 and 52 yards out, but the game belonged to 300-pound nose tackle Ndamukong Suh, who made 12 tackles and caught a two-yard touchdown pass after lining up at fullback in the fourth. Kansas got a big day from Todd Reesing, who threw three touchdown passes and ran for a 14-yard score, but the Husker offense proved to be too much in the second half with a 28-7 run highlighted by Helu’s scores. Reesing helped put KU ahead early with a brilliant play in the first quarter to find Kerry Meier for a 28-yard touchdown, and he later hit Dezmon Briscoe for a 53-yard score and Dexton Fields for an 11-yard score. The Huskers finished with five sacks to KU’s two.
Player of the game: Nebraska DT Ndamukong Suh made 12 tackles, 2.5 sacks and four tackles for loss. He also caught a two-yard touchdown pass.
Stat Leaders: Kansas - Passing: Todd Reesing, 15-30, 304 yds, 3 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Jake Sharp, 22-90, 1 TD. Receiving: Dezmon Briscoe, 6-176, 1 TD
Nebraska - Passing: Joe Ganz, 28-37, 324 yds, 3 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Roy Helu, 16-115, 2 TD. Receiving: Roy Helu, 8-61
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... Ndamukong Suh made himself some money against Kansas. Always considered a good talent, he was unstoppable against Kansas as the main man in the middle for the defensive front dominated throughout. Offensively, the shift has officially kicked in as Roy Helu Jr. appeared to have permanently pushed Marlon Lucky out of playing time. The coaching staff is adapting and adjusting on the fly, and it’s working. Coming off the blowout loss to Oklahoma, the Huskers regrouped and came up with their best win of the season with winnable games against Kansas State and Colorado to close. Now, just getting bowl eligible isn’t enough. A nine-win season, if Nebraska wins its bowl game, is possible.

Nov. 1
Oklahoma 62 …Nebraska 28
The game was less than six minutes old and Oklahoma was up 28-0. Chris Brown ran for a two-yard touchdown, and a few seconds later, on Nebraska’s first pass of the game, Dominique Franks timed a Joe Ganz pass perfectly and took it 18 yards for a touchdown. Sam Bradford connected with Quentin Chaney for a 48-yard touchdown and hit Jermaine Gresham for a nine-yard touchdown. Brown close out the first quarter with a one-yard run. DeMarco Murray scored three times in the second half for the Sooners. While Nebraska got on the board with three touchdown runs and an eight-yard Nate Swift touchdown catch, but it was way too late. OU gained 508 yards to 418.
Player of the game: Oklahoma QB Sam Bradford completed 19-of-27 passes for 311 yards and five touchdowns, and he ran for 14 yards.
Stat Leaders: Nebraska - Passing: Joe Ganz, 14-26, 206 yds, 1 TD, 2 INT
Rushing: Roy Helu, 16-157, 1 TD. Receiving: Todd Peterson, 5-73
Oklahoma - Passing: Sam Bradford, 19-27, 311 yds, 5 TD
Rushing: Chris Brown, 9-89, 1 TD. Receiving: Jermaine Gresham, 5-52, 2 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... Oklahoma is playing at a high level, so there’s no reason to get too down about the loss, but this was a game to show just how far the program needs to go. Joe Ganz struggled early and he couldn’t get it back until it was too late. It’ll be interesting to see if Roy Helu starts to get more carries after tearing off 157 yards in garbage time. However, with Kansas up next, just keeping up the pace might be a must. The Huskers will do that in any way they can, and that’ll most likely be through the air.

Oct. 25
Nebraska 32 … Baylor 20
Baylor got up 14-7 early on a Jay Finley 43-yard touchdown run and a Robert Griffin 47-yard scoring dash, and then it was all Nebraska as Marlon Lucky ran for an 18-yard touchdown and Nate Swift caught touchdown passes from nine and 53 yards out. Baylor ran for 216 yards, but it couldn’t keep the chains moving as the offense failed to convert on any of the ten third down chances.
Player of the game: Nebraska WR Nate Swift caught 11 passes for 121 yards and two touchdowns, and became the school’s all-time leading receiver
Stat Leaders: Baylor - Passing: Robert Griffin, 9-20, 134 yds
Rushing: Robert Griffin, 16-121, 1 TD. Receiving: Kendall Wright, 3-60
Nebraska - Passing: Joe Ganz, 32-46, 336 yds, 3 TD
Rushing: Marlon Lucky, 16-83, 1 TD. Receiving: Nate Swift, 11-121, 2 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... Sort of quietly, Nebraska has started to play well. It battled a hot Texas Tech in overtime and had few problems against Iowa State or Baylor, especially defensively. The sacks are starting to come with three against the Bears, and the defensive aggressiveness is starting to pay off. Joe Ganz, when he gets time, is deadly, and Nate Swift is having a great year. Swift, unfortunately, will get swept aside in the all-star consideration thanks to all the other great Big 12 receivers this year.

Oct. 18
Nebraska 35 … Iowa State 7
Nebraska dominated on both sides of the ball as Marlon Lucky ran for two second quarter touchdowns and Joe Ganz hit Nate Swift for a 19-yard touchdown pass and ran for a score. Iowa State only managed 218 yards of total offense with 67 of them coming on a third quarter touchdown run from Alexander Robinson, Quentin Castille closed it out with a 19-yard touchdown run for the Huskers.
Player of the game: Nebraska QB Joe Ganz completed 27-of-37 passes for 328 yards and a touchdown and he ran for a score
Stat Leaders: Iowa State - Passing: Austen Arnaud, 16-29, 113 yds
Rushing: Alexander Robinson, 11-87, 1 TD. Receiving: R.J. Sumrall, 6-44
Nebraska - Passing: Joe Ganz, 27-37, 328 yds, 1 TD
Rushing: Marlon Lucky, 15-74, 2 TD. Receiving: Nate Swift, 8-112, 1 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... Iowa State couldn’t get the offense going for a second game in a row. It’s not like Nebraska was doing anything out of the ordinary, but the Cyclones couldn’t keep the chains moving, converting just 2-of-13 third down chances, with Austin Arnaud failing to get the passing game going. Now on a five-game losing streak, the Cyclones have to beat Texas A&M at home next week or it’ll take a monumental upset to win another game.
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... Nebraska broke its three-game losing streak with its best performance of the year. Joe Ganz was razor-sharp against Iowa State, especially in the first half, and Marlon Lucky and the running game showed up. The Cyclone offense didn’t go anywhere, and outside of a long touchdown run, the Huskers didn’t give up a thing. Now there’s a chance to get even more momentum with Baylor up next before dealing with Oklahoma and Kansas. If the passing game works like it did in Ames, the Huskers will have a puncher’s chance in Norman.

Oct. 11
Texas Tech 37 … Nebraska 31 OT
Texas Tech got a one-yard touchdown run from Eric Morris in overtime, but the point after attempt was blocked. Nebraska wasn’t able to take advantage as Joe Ganz threw an ill-advised pass into the arms of Red Raider DB Jamar Wall to end the thriller. The Huskers had forced overtime with a 17-yard Todd Peterson touchdown catch with just 29 seconds to play as a response to a great late drive from Texas Tech that finished with a one-yard Graham Harrell scoring plunge. Tech held a 24-10 with just over 12 minutes to play, but Ganz ran for a touchdown and threw for two scores in a wild fourth quarter. Michael Crabtree caught touchdown passes from 35 and four yards out for the Red Raiders.
Player of the game: Texas Tech WR Michael Crabtree caught five passes for 89 yards and two touchdowns
Stat Leaders: Nebraska - Passing: Joe Ganz, 36-44, 349 yds, 2 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Marlon Lucky, 16-66. Receiving: Todd Peterson, 8-77, 1 TD
Texas Tech - Passing: Graham Harrell, 20-25, 284 yds, 2 TD
Rushing: Baron Batch, 10-97. Receiving: Michael Crabtree, 5-89, 2 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... Nebraska not only showed some signs of life, it showed it could play with a team as good as Texas Tech. The Huskers outgained the Red Raiders 471 yards to 421 and held on to the ball for a whopping 40:12 while the defense did a great job of keeping Graham Harrell and the passing game from exploding. Yeah, it was a loss, but it was a positive loss. However, the pressure is now on, with a three game losing streak to bust, to beat Iowa State and Baylor over the next two weeks.

Oct. 4
Missouri 52 … Nebraska 17
Missouri started off the scoring with a 58-yard Jeremy Maclin touchdown catch in the first minute of the game, but Nebraska answered with a 20-yard Nate Swift scoring grab. And then it was over. Mizzou went on a 24-point first half run with short touchdown runs from Derrick Washington and Jimmy Jackson and a 17-yard interception return for a score from Brock Christopher. Nebraska got a field goal late in the first half, but the Tigers were on a 45-3 spurt with Washington scoring twice in the third quarter on a seven-yard catch and a 43-yard run, and Danario Alexander caught a 26-yard touchdown pass to end the fin for the Tigers. Nebraska got a garbage touchdown with no time left on the clock.
Player of the game: Missouri QB Chase Daniel completed 18-of-23 passes for 253 yards and three touchdowns
Stat Leaders: Nebraska - Passing: Joe Ganz, 26-38, 290 yds, 2 TD, 1 INT
Rushing:
Marlon Lucky, 14-46. Receiving: Todd Peterson, 7-81
Missouri
- Passing: Chase Daniel, 18-23, 253 yds, 3 TD
Rushing:
Derrick Washington, 14-139, 2 TD. Receiving: Jeremy Maclin, 5-89, 1 TD

Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... 14 penalties, no running game, no defense, and an ugly blowout loss that was even worse than the 52-17 final score indicates. Nebraska did nothing against Missouri after the first ten minutes, and now, after failing two straight home tests, with the loss to Virginia Tech last week still fresh, the team needs to find something it can count on. But first, head coach Bo Pelini has to relax. He’s apologizing to everyone, he’s taking a blowout loss to a national title caliber team too hard, and he needs to realize that it’s going to take a little while. Nebraska is hardly a finished product.

Sept. 27
Virginia Tech 35 … Nebraska 30
Virginia Tech seemingly had the game in hand thanks to four Dustin Keyes field goals and two scoring runs from Darren Evans, but Nebraska didn’t quit. Down 28-10, the Huskers got a 12-yard Roy Helu touchdown run on the last play of the third quarter and an 88-yard punt return for a score from Nate Swift in the fourth, but Tyrod Taylor put the Hokies up for good with a two-yard scoring dash. Nebraska wasn’t done fighting with Todd Peterson catching a 17-yard touchdown pass with 1:32 remaining. Virginia Tech recovered the on-side kick but couldn’t run out the clock. Nebraska wasn’t able to do anything with the ball in the final seconds.
Player of the game: Virginia Tech QB Tyrod Taylor completed 9-of-15 passes for 171 yards and ran 15 times for a team-leading 87 yards and a touchdown. 
Stat Leaders: Virginia Tech - Passing: Tyrod Taylor, 9-15, 171 yds
Rushing:
Ryan Tyrod Taylor, 15-87, 1 TD. Receiving: Jarrett Boykin, 2-58
Nebraska
- Passing: Joe Ganz, 17-26, 278 yds, 2 TD, 1 INT
Rushing:
Roy Helu, 4-21, 1 TD. Receiving: Todd Peterson, 4-60, 1 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... Nebraska wasn’t able to move the ball on Virginia Tech until it was way too late. The offense failed on third down after third down allowing the Hokies to control the ball and the clock, but the biggest problem was a lack of running game. Marlon Lucky was held to 17 yards on eight carries and the team gained just 55 yards on 25 tries. Meanwhile, the Hokies ran for 206 yards with three scores. If the offense couldn’t keep up with Virginia Tech, how is it going to handle Missouri?

Sept. 13
Nebraska 38 … New Mexico State 7
Joe Ganz threw a 35-yard touchdown pass to Mike McNeill, ran for a 33-yard score, and caught a 20-yard touchdown pass from RB Marlon Lucky as Nebraska won with ease. Lucky ran for an eight-yard touchdown to start the scoring on the way to a 35-0 Husker lead before New Mexico State got on the board in the fourth quarter on a three-yard Marquell Colston run. Nebraska ran for 330 yards and outgained the Aggies 553 yards to 339. NMSU safety Derrick Richardson made 17 tackles.
Player of the game:
Nebraska RB Marlon Lucky ran 15 times for 103 yards and two touchdowns, and caught three passes for 21 yards. He also threw a 20-yard touchdown pass.
Stat Leaders: Nebraska
- Passing: Joe Ganz, 13-17, 158 yds, 1 TD
Rushing: Marlon Lucky, 15-103, 2 TD. Receiving: Todd Peterson, 4-34
New Mexico State - Passing: Chase Holbrook, 15-30, 142 yds, 2 INT
Rushing: Marquell Colston, 8-45, 1 TD. Receiving: Chris Williams, 4-42

Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... The only knock on the win over New Mexico State is with the effectiveness in the red zone. The Huskers had three empty trips inside the Aggie 20, but other than that, this was an efficient, easy win over a rested team with a dangerous passing attack. This was a huge test for a much-maligned Nebraska secondary, and it passed with flying colors. Now everyone can turn the full focus on the Virginia Tech game.

Sept. 6
Nebraska 35 ... San Jose State 12
San Jose State pulled within 14-12 in the fourth quarter on Jared Strubeck's second field goal of the game, but Niles Paul changed things around taking the ensuing kickoff 85 yards for a score. The Huskers cruised the rest of the way with a 14-yard Roy Helu touchdown run and a two-yard Marlon Lucky score. Ndamukong Suh picked off a pass and took it 49 yards for a score to give the Huskers a 14-6 lead, but the offense sputtered until late. San Jose State started off the scoring with a 12-yard touchdown run from QB Kyle Reed.
Player of the game: Nebraska WR Niles Paul caught two passes for 27 yards, returned two punts for 15 yards, and returned two kickoffs for 111 yards and a game-changing touchdowns.
Stat Leaders: San Jose State
- Passing: Kyle Reed, 18-26, 161 yds, 1 INT
Rushing: Yonus Davis, 7-58. Receiving: David Richmond, 5-59
Nebraska
- Passing: Joe Ganz, 17-25, 216 yds, 1 INT
Rushing: Roy Helu, 9-59, 1 TD. Receiving: Nate Swift, 6-70

Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... San Jose State might have played inspired football, but there's reason to be concerned. The offense struggled to get anything consistently going even though Joe Ganz threw the ball consistently. The running game was stuffed for 99 yards, but two turnovers and 12 penalties for 103 yards hurt. Call it a work in progress, but the Huskers are 2-0 going into a certain win against New Mexico State. Things are progressing, and the hope has to be for everything to be clicking by October 4th against Missouri.

Aug. 30
Nebraska 47 ... Western Michigan 24
Nebraska got up 17-0 and stayed comfortably ahead all game long with a strong passing day from Joe Ganz, who threw four touchdown passes, highlighted by a 61-yarder to Nate Swift. Swift also caught a two-yarder, and Marlon Lucky scored on a 14-yard run and a 19-yard pass. Western Michigan put up 342 passing yards, but failed to make a big run with scores spread throughout the game. Tim Hiller threw two touchdown passes.
Player of the game: Nebraska QB Joe Ganz completed 20 of 36 passes for 345 yards and four touchdowns with two interceptions, and he ran for 38 yards.
Stat Leaders: Western Michigan - Passing: Tim Hiller, 30-49, 342 yds, 2 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: Brandon West, 12-29, 1 TD. Receiving: Brandon Ledbetter, 9-123, 1 TD
Nebraska - Passing: Joe Ganz, 20-36, 345 yds, 4 TD, 2 INT
Rushing: Roy Helu, 7-52. Receiving: Nate Swift, 5-121, 2 TD
Whoopty doo. What does it all mean, Basil? ... The defense might not have been as stifling against Western Michigan as Bo Pelini might have liked, and the running game was merely average, but it was a dominant win over a good MAC team with plenty of veteran. Defensively, Cody Glenn appeared to be a natural at linebacker making plays all over the field, but the big story was Joe Ganz. He threw two picks, but he had good command of the offense and made the big throws when needed.

2008 Recruiting Class

Star of the Class

Baker Steinkuhler OL, 6-6, 290, Lincoln, Neb. (Lincoln Southwest HS)
Steinkuhler is one of the most decorated members of Nebraska's 2008 signing class after a standout prep career at Lincoln Southwest High School. The son of 1983 Outland Trophy and Lombardi Award winner Dean Steinkuhler, Baker earned Lincoln Journal Star Super State honors three straight years and Omaha World-Herald All-Nebraska honors each of the past two seasons. Steinkuhler was also recognized as the top lineman on the prestigious Parade All-America team, which consisted of the nation's top 58 players, while earning second-team All-America honors from USA Today. Steinkuhler was a four-year starter and starred on both sides of the ball for Coach Mark King at Southwest, but is expected to begin his Nebraska career on the offensive line. Steinkuhler's play has helped Southwest rank among the state's top Class A programs in recent years. As a senior, he recorded 36 solo stops, 36 assisted tackles, helping the Southwest defense allow just 190 yards per game. Offensively, Steinkuhler anchored the offensive line which paved the way for Brandon Brown to rank fourth in Class A at 140.6 rushing yards per game. During his junior season, Baker anchored the lines for a 10-1 Southwest team that was ranked No. 1 for much of the season. During his sophomore season, Steinkuhler helped the Silverhawks to a state runner-up finish. Generally regarded as the top prospect in Nebraska, Steinkuhler was ranked the No. 2 offensive tackle according to Scout.com. He was also the SuperPrep Midlands region Offensive Player of the Year and the No. 25 overall prospect in the country according to that publication. He was also a first-team EA Sports prep All-American. Steinkuhler put his skills on display at the U.S. Army All-American Game in January, where he played on the defensive side of the ball. Baker committed to Nebraska at the start of his junior season and did not take any additional visits. Baker is the son of Sue Steinkuhler and Dean Steinkuhler and was born on July 12, 1989. His brother, Ty, will be a senior defensive lineman for the Huskers in 2008.

Potential Instant Impact Players

Will Compton 
LB  6-2  230 Bonne Terre, Mo. (North County) Compton is a quick linebacker who has skyrocketed up the rankings after convincing scouts on the camp circuit. He moves well and shows great ball instincts on film. He is not the biggest linebacker physically, but plays big on the field. He is as good in pass coverage as he is against the run. Compton starred as a running back and safety last year for North County. In nine games he had 455 yards rushing on 64 attempts averaging 7.1 yards per carry while catching 51 passes for 855 yards for a 16.8 yard average. On defense he had 70 tackles, 13 tackles for loss and an interception; Compton benches 325 pounds, squats 390 and has a 30-inch vertical leap.

Josh Williams DE 6-4 225 Denton, Tx. (Ryan HS)
Williams had 68 tackles, 22 tackles for loss, eight quarterback pressures, six sacks, and six deflected passes last year. He earned all-district and all-area honors lass year as a junior.

Rest of the Class

Antonio Bell WR 6-2 180 Daytona Beach, Fla. (Mainland)
Khiry Cooper WR 6-2 180 Shreveport, La. (Calvary Baptist Academy)
Ben Cotton TE 6-6 230 Ames, Iowa (Ames)
Alfonzo Dennard DB 5-10 190 Rochelle, Ga. (Wilcox County)
Sean Fisher LB 6-6 225 Omaha, Neb. (Millard North)
David Grant OL 6-6 295 Killeen, Texas (Killeen)
Ricky Henry OL 6-4 305 Omaha, Neb. (Omaha Burke/North Dakota State College of Science)
Tyson Hetzer TE 6-6 245 Redding, Calif. (Anderson/Citrus College)
Micah Kreikemeier LB 6-3 210 West Point, Neb. (West Point Central Catholic)
John Levorson DB 6-3 190 Crete, Neb. (Crete)
Tim Marlowe WR 5-10 160 Youngstown, Ohio (Cardinal Mooney)
Cameron Meredith DL 6-4 225 Santa Ana, Calif. (Mater Dei)
Collins Okafor RB 6-1 195 Omaha, Neb. (Omaha Westside)
Courtney Osborne ATH 6-3 175 Garland, Texas (South Garland)
Steven Osborne WR 6-4 185 Garland, Texas (South Garland)
Kyler Reed HB 6-3 220 Shawnee, Kan. (St. Thomas Aquinas)
Justin Rogers DB 5-11 180 Birmingham, Ala. (Vestavia Hills)
P.J. Smith DB 6-2 205 River Ridge, La. (John Curtis)
Kody Spano QB 6-2 205 Stephenville, Texas (Stephenville)
Baker Steinkuhler OL 6-6 290 Lincoln, Neb. (Lincoln Southwest)
Brandon Thompson OL 6-6 295 The Woodlands, Texas (The Woodlands)
Quentin Toailoa DL 6-4 300 Highland, Calif. (Redlands East Valley)
Lester Ward RB 6-3 215 Brenham, Texas (Brenham)
Alonzo Whaley LB/FB 6-1 225 Madisonville, Texas (Madisonville)
David Whitmore DB 6-2 185 Port Arthur, Texas (Memorial)

2007 Recap

Recap:
Long before the Huskers narrowly escaped Ball State at home, and skidded to a 1-6 finish, they were actually seriously considered contenders for the Big 12 title.  However, instead of a return to glory under Bill Callahan, Nebraska was just plain gory throughout October and November, yielding an unimaginable 428 points over the final 10 games.  The high-profile collapse of the once mighty Huskers brought legendary former coach Tom Osborne back into the fold as interim AD, while Callahan was ushered out after four unremarkable seasons.

Offensive Player of the Year:
RB Marlon Lucky

Defensive Player of the Year: LB Steve Octavien

Biggest Surprise: Although the toe tag had been on the Huskers for weeks, they somehow mustered up the energy on Nov. 10 to obliterate Kansas State, 73-31.  The irony of the rout was that just seven days earlier, it was Nebraska that allowed more than 70 points in a loss to Kansas.  At least for one afternoon, Husker fans got a glimpse of Callahan’s spread offense at its finest, producing a school-record 510 yards and seven touchdown passes from QB Joe Ganz.   

Biggest Disappointment: Losing to Missouri, 41-6, on Oct. 7.  At a time when they were still considered a threat in the Big 12 North, the curtain got pulled all the way back on the Huskers in front of a national TV audience.  Chase Daniel & Co. lit up Nebraska for more than 600 yards of total offense, setting off the worst second-half stretch in Big Red history.       

Looking Ahead: Could Nebraska have attracted a more proven commodity at head coach than LSU defensive coordinator Bo Pelini? Yup.  However, while no one knows for sure how Pelini will fare in his first head job, you can bet that his teams will be far more physical and tighter on defense than the last few playing in Lincoln.  

 

Related Stories
Wade Back on the Market
 -by FOXSportsRecruiting.com  Jan 19, 2009
Scout 300 Shakeup
 -by FOXSportsRecruiting.com  Jan 15, 2009
Five Huskers to Play in All-Star Games
 -by BigRedReport.com  Jan 13, 2009








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