Chase Rome thinks Bo Pelini picked just the right words after the Ohio State game when he told his players that Nebraska needed to win out to make the Big Ten championship game.
But Rome added that the Huskers' 29 seniors took that challenge and ran with it, too.
“Bo knows the character of this team — especially our seniors. We like to hit a challenge head on,” Rome said. “The rest of the guys rallied around our seniors. ... They led those comebacks. Obviously, everybody had a part of it. But being a redshirt sophomore, I still look to Baker (Steinkuhler) like, 'OK, what are we doing?'
“And I think everybody has that senior they look to. Those guys are just a heck of a group. They've been through it for years and they've played in championships. And we want to pull this one out.”
Huskers adjust to Iowa's short passing game
As much criticism as Iowa offensive coordinator Greg Davis received from Hawkeye fans after the game, he did appear to go to school on some of the strategies Penn State used to move the ball on the Huskers. He split his tight ends out wide and placed wide receivers in the slots. That allowed Iowa to hit a few of Davis' preferred hitch routes for nice gains.
But Nebraska nickel back Ciante Evans said NU identified this strategy and adjusted accordingly, sending Sean Fisher out to cover a tight end while the corners stayed inside to cover wide receivers. Evans' blanket coverage on a third-quarter pass led to a tipped ball that safety Daimion Stafford intercepted.
“We made our adjustments and we were able to come out and execute,” Evans said. “That was the biggest things: Execute our adjustments and come out and play hard and play fast.”
Whaley grabs bragging rights among linebackers
Since Nebraska's linebackers have had a season-long debate about which player has the best hands, Will Compton is sure he'll be hearing from Alonzo Whaley all week.
Whaley intercepted Iowa's James Vandenberg in the fourth quarter Friday, sealing Nebraska's 13-7 win. Compton was on the field for the play, but he didn't see it while covering a running back. But he heard about it.
First, senior Sean Fisher found Compton on the sideline and recounted the play.
Said Compton: “Fish was like, 'He legit played the man and pressed into him and picked it off like a cornerback.'”
Then Whaley found Compton.
“He was like, 'I got the best hands. It's on film now,'” Compton said.
Big Ten championship game tickets are on sale
Tickets for the Big Ten title game are on sale at Huskers.com through the weekend.
The game is at 7:17 p.m. Saturday at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.
Tickets are $80 each, and NU's allotment is 15,000. Fans are encouraged to buy tickets from that allotment in order to sit in the Nebraska section. All tickets are Print-at-Home tickets.
On Monday, tickets can also be purchased by calling 1-800-8-BIG RED from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
— Sam McKewon and Jon Nyatawa