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Nebraska at Washington

Posted by Blake Frazier on 9/17/2010 6:15:38 AM on SA

Sports betting players, over the last few years, have seen the importance of having a quarterback who can run as well as pass, and Nebraska is jumping on the spread bandwagon with their freshman quarterback, who is making his first road start at Washington. The Huskies are soon going to find out who he is, and that they need more speed on defense to compete in the new era of college football.

  • What: NCAA football betting
  • When: Saturday, September 18th, 3:30 PM ET
  • Where: Husky Stadium, Seattle, WA
  • Pick: Nebraska Cornhuskers -3

What’s On The Line

The No.8 Cornhuskers (2-0) thumped Idaho 38-17 at home in their second game of the season, and this will be their first real test. Many feel Nebraska can challenge Texas and Oklahoma in the Big 12, and a non-conference win would go a long way for their confidence. The Huskies (1-1) bounced back from a tough loss at BYU to roll over Syracuse 41-20 in their home opener, and they’ll be aiming to avenge a couple of losses to the Cornhuskers in the late 1990s: Nebraska beat Washington 27-14 (in Seattle), and 55-7 (in Lincoln) in 1997 and 1998, respectively.

Offensive Matchups: Nebraska Washington Betting

Taylor Martinez has emerged as the man in Lincoln, and the dual-threat quarterback has sparked the Cornhuskers to the third-ranked ground game in the country. Against Idaho, Martinez was 12-of-17 for 106 yards and a pick, but he ran 14 times for 157 yards and two scores for the Cornhuskers, and as he gets more comfortable, you should see him more comfortable in the pocket. However, he’s a redshirt freshman, and he’s making his first start on the road. Husky Stadium can be extremely loud, and you can’t simulate that in practice.

Washington’s Jake Locker is more of a typical pivot, and he came back for his senior season to try and aim for the No.1 overall pick. So far, he’s played only average, and while he threw four touchdowns against Syracuse, three of those went to Jamaal Kearse, who did most of the work on short passes. Chris Polk ran for 117 yards against the Orangemen, but he’ll need a similar game or better to keep the Cornhuskers from keying on Locker.

Betting Edge: Draw

Defensive Matchups: Nebraska Washington Betting

The defense isn’t the same now that Ndamukong Suh is destroying people in the NFL, but the Cornhuskers are still hard as nails, and they may be more balanced throughout the team as Suh’s presence last season made the line the focal point, which allowed the rest of the unit to grow. Baker Steinkuhler has stepped into his spot, but the guy to watch on Nebraska’s defense is linebacker Eric Martin, who made his first start last week. The secondary will have to keep up with Washington’s quick receivers.

The Huskies have not been known as one of the greatest defensive teams in the world, and they’re currently 78th after two games. They allowed 336 yards against Syracuse, and 408 against BYU, so they’re going to have to shore up that unit. Now they have to deal with Nebraska’s option offense, and we don’t know if there’s enough speed in the unit to keep Martinez under wraps. Cort Dennison is going to have his hands full in the middle of the Washington defense.

Betting Edge: Nebraska

Notable Injuries: Nebraska Washington Betting

Safety Ricky Thenarse (leg) battled cramps against Idaho and again in practice, but should be fine for Nebraska.

Receiver James Johnson (ankle) is questionable for the Huskies.

 

Betting Edge: Nebraska

Outlook and Pick: Nebraska Washington Betting

The Cornhuskers are 3-point favorites on the road according to NCAA football betting odds, but it won’t be easy as Washington is a good team at home, going 1-2 against ranked teams at Husky Stadium last season, and only a loss to Oregon was a blowout. This game is all about Martinez and whether the Huskies can stop Nebraska’s offense. We don’t think their defense is fast enough sideline-to-sideline to slow them down, and the Nebraska defense may bend a little against Washington, but they won’t break. Take Nebraska to the online betting bank with a win here.

Blake’s Pick: Nebraska Cornhuskers Bet it Now at BetOnline