Published Monday, October 24, 2011 AT 10:53 AM / Updated at 10:56 AM
Pigskin Pulse, Oct. 24
Jon Nyatawa Omaha World-Herald

If you haven’t yet glanced at the November schedule, I’ll kick off today’s edition of the Pulse with a brief overview — explaining why Saturday’s game against MSU is basically a must-win for Nebraska.

The Spartans, at 3-0 in league play, finish their Big Ten slate with three games against opponents who are currently winless against conference teams (Minnesota, Indiana and Northwestern).

Yes, there’s that road trip to Iowa on Nov. 12, but if Michigan State beats Nebraska Saturday, Sparty would have to lose three times to be overtaken by the Huskers in the Legends Division standings.

Nebraska’s currently tied with two other teams, Michigan and Iowa, at 2-1 in conference play. So this race for a spot in the Big Ten title game could end up involving some complex tiebreakers (a scenario where three teams tie at 6-2 is possible).

But if it’s down to NU-MSU, the Huskers’ chances diminish greatly if they can’t win Saturday. Big game.

Below are a few links to check out before coach Bo Pelini addresses the media Monday. We’re about 30 minutes away from that. So read quickly!

>>> Sam McKewon, in his Monday Husker rewind, says Michigan State has proven it’s the finished product. NU’s going to have to play well — really well — to win Saturday. The Spartans have impressed fellow World-Herald writer Lee Barfknecht, too.

>>> Here’s a feature on NU receiver Kenny Bell, who still wears his scout team jersey from a year ago. Also, a second-day notebook begins with a look at the time of possession statistic from Nebraska’s 41-14 win over Minnesota.

A few stories beyond the Nebraska borders that you should check out…

>>> I’m sure you heard: Texas Tech spoiled Oklahoma’s national title hopes with the upset of the college football season Saturday night. It’s still a little unbelievable even two days later.

>>> Quarterback Andrew Luck and Stanford had another dominating day Saturday, beating Washington 65-21. Wow. Here’s an update on Luck’s Heisman candidacy.

>>> Ohio State has a better shot at beating the Badgers, who’ll now have to figure out a way to rebound from that devastating loss to Michigan State.

>>> According to police, two Montana football players had to be subdued with stun guns after a noise complaint was reported at 2:40 a.m. Sunday.


About Jon Nyatawa

Jon Nyatawa has covered local sports, primarily Nebraska football, for The Omaha World-Herald since 2008. He and his laptop, cell phone, tape recorder, pen and notebook all live in Lincoln. Follow him on Twitter: @JonNyatawa. Email him here: He welcomes feedback.