Associated Press

A: 1957 Q: Before today, when was the last time Nebraska started 0-2?


It hasn’t exactly been the start to the season either Nebraska or its fans anticipated.

After guiding UCF to an undefeated season and national championship, Scott Frost, the former Nebraska quarterback, came home to the Cornhuskers in what many hoped would be a triumphant return to Lincoln.  Disappointment reigned Frost’s highly-anticipated coaching debut in Lincoln was scuttled because of weather; Colorado knocked off Nebraska in Week 2, again in Lincoln, with a touchdown with just over a minute left in the fourth quarter.

Week 3 got exponentially worse as, with starting quarterback Adrian Martinez sidelined due to injury, Troy came into Memorial Stadium as a decided underdog but will head back to Alabama with a 24-19 win.  The Trojans jumped out to a 17-0 lead and led 17-7 at halftime before holding off the comeback-minded but still-winless Cornhuskers.

The last time Nebraska started a season 0-2 was way, way, way back in 1957.  That year’s squad finished 1-9, the worst record in the storied program’s history.

Troy, meanwhile, scored its second Power Five upset in as many years. Last year, Neal Brown‘s squad went into Death Valley and knocked off LSU, ending the Tigers’ 49-game home non-conference winning streak.

Replacing the injured Martinez, Andrew Bunch, a sophomore walk-on, completed 19-of-27 passes for 177 yards and a pair of touchdowns, although he did have two costly interceptions as well.  The last of those picks came with just over two minutes remaining and extinguished any hope of a comeback after Troy ran for a first down on third-and-three; his first came as NU was marching close to field-goal range.

The Cornhuskers actually outgained the defending Sun Belt Conference champions, 364-253, while they led in first downs 22-12 as well.  A 58-yard punt return for a touchdown early in the second quarter by the Trojans’ Cedarius Rookard helped negate a chunk of that offensive advantage.

Nebraska, which has now lost six straight overall in the friendly confines of Memorial Stadium, will head out on the road for the first time next Saturday as a trip to the Big House to face No. 19 Michigan looms in Week 4.

Matt Wells adds former assistant Mark Tommerdahl as special teams coach at Texas Tech

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Texas Tech officially announced the hiring of Mark Tommerdahl to be the new special teams coach for the Red Raiders on the staff led by Matt Wells. Tommerdahl takes on the title of associate head coach as well as special teams coordinator and assistant offensive line coach.

Wells previously had Tommerdahl as a special teams coach at Utah State in 2017. Tommerdahl spent the 2018 season as special teams and tight ends coach at Purdue. He has had previous stops at Cal, Louisiana Tech, Texas A&M, Alabama, TCU, New Mexico, Minnesota, and Wyoming during his coaching career since 1984.

During their one season together at Utah State in 2017, Wells and Tommerdahl had a special teams unit that ranked fourth in the nation in blocked punts and owned a top 25 kickoff return defense. Last year, Tommerdahl’s Purdue special teams ranked 39th in punting (while Texas Tech ranked 61st) and 29th in punt return defense (Texas Tech was 40th). Purdue kicked just one kickoff out of bounds last season, while Texas Tech kicked six kickoffs out of bounds.

Troy LB Tron Folsom says he will enter NCAA transfer portal

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One of Troy’s top defensive players will be looking to play somewhere new in 2019. Tron Folsom announced he will enter his name in the NCAA transfer portal to begin evaluating any potential options for his final year of eligibility on the football field.

“After talking it over with my family, I will enter my name in the transfer porta and re-open my recruitment as a graduate transfer in the spring,” Folsom said in a message posted on his Twitter account on Friday. “I have no specific schools in mind and will be open minded during this process.”

As a graduate transfer, Folsom will be eligible to play immediately for whatever his new program may be this fall. He will have just one year of eligibility remaining after playing in a total of 38 games for Troy over the past three seasons.

Folsom recorded 9.0 tackles for a loss among his 82 total tackles for the Trojans last season. Folsom also had three sacks and two interceptions, one of which was returned for a touchdown.

30-year old Aussie punter from Maryland enters transfer portal

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After starting each of Maryland’s last 24 games, punter Wade Lees is ready to explore his potential options. According to a report on Friday, Lees has entered his name into the NCAA transfer portal, allowing him to be in contact with other programs who may be in need of a new punter on their football roster.

The oldest player in the Big Ten last season, Lees has one year of eligibility remaining.

Lees punted 67 times with a punting average of 40.93 yards per punt last season for Maryland.  He punted five times inside the opponent’s 20-yard line in a game against Penn State last November. It was the second time he had downed five punts inside the 20-yard line in a game during his Maryland career. In 2017, Lees punted 64 times for an average of 39.23 yards per punt. Those numbers put him right about in the middle of the Big Ten punting categories with the second-highest average number of punts per game. Lees started for Maryland for all 13 games played in his freshman season of 2016 as well.

With Lees potentially on the move, Maryland’s roster has just one player listed as a punter on the official team roster published online. Bentley Faulkner, who did not appear in a game in 2018 as a true freshman, figures to take over the punting duties during spring football practices. Expect Maryland head coach Mike Locksley to try adding a punter before the fall, if just for depth as the worst-case scenario.

Mike Leach’s final lecture will stream live through the magic of the internet

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Technology is a wonderful thing. And because of it, we’ll all be able to witness to Mike Leach instructing his class this spring semester at Washington State. Specifically, the world will be invited to observe the final session of Leach’s course, Leadership Lessons in Insurgent Warfare and Football Strategies, in late April.

Leach’s course is an extracurricular course being offered by Washington State with four separate sessions beginning in late March. The course is only available to WSU students, of course, but WSU knows there is much to be gained by allowing Leach’s class to be viewed by others outside of Pullman.

According to a statement released by Washington State, the final session will summarize all four previous lectures and there will be a live Q&A session. Those watching the live feed will be invited to submit questions in text form for the Q&A too.