Nebraska vs. Indiana prediction and game preview. Projecting who wins the Big Ten matchup between the Cornhuskers and Hoosiers.
Nebraska vs. Indiana Game Preview
When: Saturday, Oct. 15 – 3:30 p.m. ET
Where: Memorial Stadium, Bloomington, Ind.
TV Broadcast: ABC or ESPN2
Nebraska enters its matchup with Indiana at 5-0, but some of the top players that helped it reach that mark won’t be be playing Saturday. Wide receiver Jordan Westerkamp is dealing with a back injury suffered in a 31-16 win over Illinois on Oct. 1, and tight end Cethan Carter left that game with an elbow injury. Coach Mike Riley said the bye week wasn’t enough time for them to heal, and will keep them out against the Hoosiers.
That might not bode well against upset-minded Indiana, which beat then-No. 17 Michigan State at home two weeks ago. The Hoosiers simply didn’t have enough firepower to keep pace with Ohio State last week and lost, 38-17. But, if they can keep this one close into the fourth quarter, they might have a chance to pull off the upset.
What to Know About Nebraska
Westerkamp and Carter aren’t the only two Huskers banged up. Running Back Devine Ozigbo was in a walking boot following the Illinois game and didn’t practice during the bye week, leaving his status uncertain for Saturday. Riley is “hopeful” that receiver Alonzo Moore and offensive lineman Tanner Farmer will be able to battle through their injuries and play.
Nebraska will need another solid performance out of Tommy Armstrong, who reportedly was dealing with an ankle injury that isn’t considered serious. Armstrong threw for a touchdown and ran for another against Illinois.
What to Know About Indiana
Expect the Hoosiers to keep this one tight. Ohio State coach Urban Meyer said he was impressed with Indiana, which trailed the heavily favored Buckeyes by only seven points with 10 minutes remaining in the third quarter. The Hoosiers couldn’t keep up against that superior talent, but the gap is closer with Nebraska.
Richard Lagow threw two touchdown passes against the Buckeyes after playing a critical role in Indiana’s upset of Michigan State. Devine Redding will need to get going against the Huskers’ front line after rushing 22 times for 78 yards last week.
Offense: Even – Only because multiple key offensive players for Nebraska are injured. Armstrong won’t have one of his favorite targets in Westerkamp.
Defense: Nebraska – The Huskers rank 11th in the Big Ten in average yards per play allowed, but they’ve only allowed more than 17 points once.
Special Teams: Nebraska – Indiana kicker Griffin Oakes is having a rough season. He’s 6-for-10 so far, with two misses coming from within 40 yards.
Coaching: Nebraska – Mike Riley has the Huskers off to a hot start that is night-and-day from last year.
Intangibles: Even – This marks the first meeting between the schools since 1978. Nebraska joined the Big Ten in 2011, but Indiana hasn’t appeared on the schedule until now with the two based in opposite divisions.
Matchup To Watch
Richard Lagow vs. Nebraska’s defense
The Hoosiers don’t have as much talent as the Huskers, but if they can keep it close heading into the fourth quarter, Lagow could be the difference. He’s shown plenty of poise in big games and even caught a touchdown pass against Michigan State.
Spread: Nebraska -6
Nebraska vs. Indiana Prediction
This is a tough one considering Nebraska’s injury concerns, but I’m still going with the Huskers. Armstrong will do enough through the air and on the ground while the defense keeps Lagow and Redding in check.
Nebraska vs. Indiana final score prediction: Nebraska 27, Indiana 20