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Nebraska LB Michael Rose-Ivey Finally Fights for Blackshirt Again

Michael Rose-Ivey

Michael Rose-Ivey

Fall camp 2015 was a time to start over for Nebraska linebacker Michael Rose-Ivey, a brand-new era. He was injured during last year’s August prep work and was shelved for the season.

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Unfortunately, he put himself a step behind where he should probably be presently.

Rose-Ivey was one of five Cornhuskers suspended for the season opener against BYU. As a result, all he could do was watch as a Hail Mary pass sent the Cougars home victors.

Related: BYU Defeats Nebraska 33-28 on Last-Second Hail Mary Touchdown Pass

The cameras even got a sideline shot of disbelief complete with No. 15’s mouth agape as an assistant dropped to his knees in front of him.

He’s the type of athlete that could impact a game. I’m not going to play “would’ve, could’ve, should've,” but defensive coordinator Mark Banker can take more chances in the future with Rose-Ivey on the field with Josh Banderas and Dedrick Young.

Now that he’s healthy and out of the penalty box, he’s ready to strip someone of their black.

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What Husker fans should be most enthused by is that while not an elected captain, Rose-Ivey does recognize that he is a leader on the field. What’s more, he conducts himself as one publicly.

It’s been made no secret that Nebraska's new coaches have sat down and talked one-on-one with these young men about every major topic. After having watched and listened to head coach Mike Riley since December, I can hear his conversation with Rose-Ivey in my head. Firm, but honest and to the point.

Now that he's paid his debt, he gets his opportunity back.

A hungry Rose-Ivey is exactly what Nebraska’s defense needs. Not only is he a natural talent, but also seeing a zero in the win column following the first week of Husker football for the first time since 1985 can only motivate a guy with that passion even more.

I’m not in his head, but every team from here on out may wear just a little blue and white. Their helmets might have just a bit of a “Y” on the side.

As a junior, Michael Rose-Ivey never had a shot to help Nebraska beat the BYU Cougars.

I don’t fear for those standing between him and a Blackshirt. They’re kin. A challenge, but family.

Those not wearing his colors on game day, those are the ones I don’t envy.

— Written by Brandon Cavanaugh, who is part of the Athlon Contributor Network. Be sure to follow Brandon on Twitter @eightlaces and Periscope (eightlaces), and like his Facebook page.