1. Who impressed you the most with their Week 1 performance?
On offense it has to be the play of Taylor Martinez. Just the day before, I thought that they were going to make an error by going with him over the proven starter in Zac Lee. Taylor stepped in with no nerves and on the third Nebraska play from scrimmage ripped off a touchdown run that would even make the old school option style fans proud. I will continue to say that it was only Western Kentucky and we will see what he can do against a Washington or even some of the middle level Big 12 foes, but so far so good from him.
Defensively, I was most impressed by Linebacker Lavonte David and his constant hustle and stopping ability. David will be expected to do more since Will Compton is out for the foreseeable future with a foot injury and the effort and intensity he put into a Western Kentucky game was great for the team.
2. Based on their Week 1 performance, what area(s) does the team need to improve on the most?
The run defense, and I know they only gave up 10 points in total, but this defense is not what it was last year. When you look at the statistic that you had to go back to the 2008 Colorado game since the last time Nebraska gave up a 100 Yard Rusher and that streak ends during the first game to Western Kentucky. This part of the defense need to sure up before a team with a decent run game comes to town or this could end up being a very disappointing season.
3. Which back-up or newcomer earned more playing time with their performance in last weeks game?
I think the obvious answer here is Taylor Martinez, but I will look at his (apparently) new back-up in Cody Green. Cody Green came in and showed poise and made plays with his arm and his legs and looked way better yesterday than he did at any point last year. He seems more comfortable in the offense, and if they decide to go with him or even run a two headed Quarterback I think the team will be in good hands.
4. What are the major question marks that still surround the team headed into Week 2?
The major question mark besides the run defense, is the continued play of the trio of Quarterbacks. Nebraska is going to use this next game as more of an “extended” fall practice, and see what they have for the rest of the year. This is the final game they can really do this as well because they head to Washington the week after and really need a set starter by the time that game rolls around. Idaho being a better team than Western Kentucky will show what Martinez/Green/Lee will do to a bigger extent, and hopefully they will have the situation ironed out by the end of the game. Unless of course what they did on Saturday was the game plan they will use the rest of the year.
5. Are you more or less confident in your teams ultimate success this year after Week 1?
Honestly? I feel the same as I do going in because there is really only so much you can gage based off of a 49-10 victory over Western Kentucky. The only area I feel less confident in is the run defense, but I had thought the expectations for the defense to be better than it was last year was REALLY pushing it.
6. What needs to happen in order to secure a victory in Week 2?
As concerned as I am about having a close game this week, I don’t think that Nebraska will actually lose the game. So the one thing that needs to happen is the ability to not look ahead to Washington the next week and put yourself in an Oklahoma like position of almost getting upset by a inferior team. The other thing that needs to happen is avoid injuries this week, and there were a few minor ones, but there have also been big ones that occurred during fall camp. I know it is a big deal to stay injury free for all the games you play, but it is especially important for these games when you have a big opponent coming in the next week.