The Nebraska special teams took a beating last week at Northwestern, so they were worth watching Saturday night against Michigan.
Most of what you saw was pretty good.
All-Big Ten senior Brett Maher led the way by making all three of his field goals and averaging 42.2 yards per punt. Michigan only returned two of the punts, and finished with negative yardage on those.
Nebraska also did not allow a kickoff return of more than 26 yards. The Huskers averaged 24.7 yards on its kick returns (no punts were returned, but none were fumbled, either, after NU muffed a pair the week before).
Maher’s lone mishap was one kickoff that went out of bounds, but NU coach Bo Pelini said his made field goals of 19, 51 and 31 yards were a huge plus. Maher is now 12 of 17 on the season.
“Every point was big in this game,” Pelini said. “They missed one (field goal) I think that hurt them, and I thought was a big part of the game. We went in wanting to win the special teams area and I thought we did a really good job. We pinned them down there a couple times and I thought the field position worked in our favor.”
Other wrap-up nuggets from Saturday night:
>> Kickoff for Nebraska-Michigan State next Saturday has been set for 2:30 p.m. CDT on ABC.
>> Ameer Abdullah logged his fourth 100-yard game of the season with 101 yards on 24 carries.
>> Nebraska was the first team since Air Force on Sept. 8 to score more than 13 points on Michigan.
>> NU held Michigan to 93 passing yards, making the Wolverines the Huskers’ sixth opponent in eight games to not reach 200 passing.
>> All six of Kenny Bell’s touchdown catches this season have covered at least 25 yards. Bell caught a 32-yarder from Taylor Martinez in the second quarter for the game’s first points.
>> Nebraska’s three leading tacklers were David Santos (6-4-10), Alonzo Whaley (3-5-8) and Sean Fisher (3-4-7). Give yourself a gold star if you predicted that before kickoff.