Nebraska football lost a close game to the Minnesota Golden Gophers by a 20-13 score. This game did not feature starting quarterback Casey Thompson, who was out with an injury. Nebraska switched between quarterbacks Chubba Purdy and Logan Smothers. Smothers provided a spark.
He went five-of-nine the afternoon, throwing for 80 yards. He had a chance to lead Nebraska to the tying touchdown, following a curious Minnesota decision to punt on fourth-and-short. He also carried the ball four times for four yards on the afternoon.
However, the spark he provided for Nebraska football was too little, too late on Saturday. A final touchdown bid fell short, as Smothers pass was dropped by wide receiver Trey Palmer. However, he was able to complete several key passes on the drive, including a 32-yard catch by Marcus Washington. The success on the final drive led some fans to wonder whether or not Nebraska should have put him in the game sooner.
His ability to be a running threat with the football kept the defense honest. Although he did not run football with consistency on Saturday, it added a different dimension to the game.
The Huskers stuck with Purdy for most of the game, and he struggled to get any consistent momentum through the air. He went six-of-16 on the afternoon, throwing for 41 yards and an interception. He struggled to get any consisted momentum on Saturday, and Nebraska’s offense stalled as a result.
His ability to run with the ball was a positive on Saturday. He had six carries for 24 yards, averaging four yards per carry.
But honestly, I felt as though Nebraska football stuck with Purdy too long. I understand that he is Mark Whipple’s quarterback and Whipple recruited him. However, the quarterback did not show anything on Saturday that warranted him staying in the game for extended periods of time. Purdy provided no consistent spark to the offense in a game that Nebraska football needed to win. Why they stuck with them so long remains a mystery to me.
There were not many silver linings to take away from Nebraska’s loss on Saturday. Nevertheless, the play of Smothers was a bright spot in what was a difficult afternoon for Nebraska. The game showcased all of the skills that the quarterback can bring to the table.