Life moves pretty fast sometimes. Unfortunately for Scott Frost and Nebraska, the Big Ten has been speeding past Nebraska far too often. Wins have been difficult to come by in Lincoln in recent years but Frost and Nebraska hope that 2021 will bring long-overdue hope to fruition. And despite some signs that may say otherwise, there are some legitimate reasons to be optimistic about Nebraska football.
Nebraska has been growing and building the last three seasons under Frost, but next season could see the fruits of that process begin to truly pay off. It's too early to throw Nebraska into the running for the Big Ten West Division, but it may be realistic to expect this Nebraska team will have a legitimate shot to be in the mix going into November. Here are a few reasons why that may be.
1. Nebraska is on the verge of winning football games
You don't have to look far to find people disappointed it has taken head coach Scott Frost to get things rolling again in Lincoln. Frost is entering his fourth season at Nebraska since leaving UCF and the Huskers have yet to have a .500 record or above. But they could be getting very close, and it could happen this year in spite of a challenging schedule. Nebraska won two of its final three games last season, and their last two losses of the year were by a single score. It's time to start flipping some of these close calls in Nebraska's favor.
2. Freshman Thomas Fidone could be the real deal
Recruiting at Nebraska has lagged behind the competition over the years. One player won't necessarily change that, but it was encouraging for Nebraska fans to see Frost land one of the top tight ends in the nation with the recruitment of Fidone out of Iowa. It shouldn't take long to see him play a role in the offense either. Nebraska's entire 2021 recruiting class could finish in the top five of the Big Ten, which would follow up top-five classes in 2019 and 2020. The talent in Lincoln is there for more wins than have been seen on the field. Putting it all together in 2021 is the key.
3. Getting key conference games at home
If the 2021 Nebraska schedule stays in its current form, which is never a given in today's world, then it will be a challenging one. Nebraska will renew its rivalry with Oklahoma in the first part of a home-and-home deal on the road, but the Huskers get some very key games in Big Ten play in Memorial Stadium. Back-to-back games against last year's Big Ten championship game participants, Ohio State and Northwestern, is how October will start. Nebraska also is set to host Michigan in a crossover matchup and Nebraska gets a crack at Iowa and Wisconsin at home. If ever there was a year for Nebraska to take care of home-field advantage, this has to be it.