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Carriker Chronicles: Takeaways from NU being ranked No. 50 in ESPN's Football Power Index

Carriker Chronicles: Takeaways from NU being ranked No. 50 in ESPN's Football Power Index

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All year round, former Husker and NFL veteran Adam Carriker is taking the pulse of Husker Nation. In the "Carriker Chronicles" video series, he breaks down the latest NU news, upcoming opponents, player updates and recruiting information, and he offers his insight into the X's and O's and more.

In Friday's episode, Carriker talks about the updated all-time wins list and discusses Nebraska's initial 2018 ranking in ESPN's Football Power Index.

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Here's a transcript of today's show:

Well it didn't take Scott Frost very long to move Nebraska up the all-time wins chart. He didn't even have to coach a game, ladies and gentlemen. How did this happen? Notre Dame was forced to vacate 21 of its wins due to a violation of ethical conduct by a former student athletic trainer, which means Nebraska jumped over the Fighting Irish and are now at 893 wins to rank us fourth all time in college football history. Can you say #FrostEffect?

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Welcome to a Fast Friday version of the Carriker Chronicles, where each and every Friday we give you quick and easy, brought to you by Nebraska Spine Hospital.

Today is my reaction to Nebraska being ranked No. 50 in ESPN's initial preseason FPI rankings. But I did observe some other things in these rankings as well.

Before I get to Nebraska, let's start at the top. No. 1 is not Alabama, it's Clemson — take that Nick Saban.

Next up, of the top 12 teams in these initial rankings, five of them are from the Big Ten Conference: Ohio State at four, Penn State at eight, Michigan State at 10, Michigan at 11, Wisconsin at 12. The SEC, even with all that SEC bias, only has three teams. You look at the ACC has one, the Big 12 has one, the Pac-12 has one. You got Notre Dame in there as well. The Big Ten has five teams, all other Power Five conferences combined only have six.

Now, my thoughts on Nebraska being ranked 50th in these initial rankings. Let's look at what the FPI means: Football Power Index. It's ESPN's predicitve ratings system for projecting how teams will do in the upcoming season.

Here are the things they look at. No. 1, teams' performance over the last four seasons with the most emphasis on the most recent season. Returning starters (on offense), at quarterback, and overall on defense.

Well, let's look at our last four seasons — look at our last three seasons at Nebraska, let's start here. In the last three seasons we're 19-19. Last year, if the emphasis is on last year, that probably didn't help.

Now, returning starters at quarterback, gonna have a brand new quarterback, odds are a freshman. Two of the main competitors next year are going to be a redshirt freshman and a true freshman.

Returning starters overall on offense and defense, we're going to have new faces all over the place. That's why there's so many junior college guys in this year's recruiting class.

Then you look at whether a team has a returning head coach. We have a new head coach. Then you look at recruiting rankings over the last four years. Actually, (Mike) Riley and Scott Frost did pretty well.

But if you look at all this, we're projected 50th out of 130 teams. That seems ... expected to me. Now, I haven't seen this much excitement around Husker football in a very, very long time, ladies and gentlemen. If you think about it, we probably only rank this high because Scott Frost is the new head coach. But ladies and gentlemen, let's think about the recruiting class so far. Pretty good. We're in full swing with strength and conditioning.

We're building something here, ladies and gentlemen. Spring practice is gonna start very soon. They're gonna implement that speed, they're gonna implement how they practice, how physical they are, how fast they go from drill to drill, how intense they are.

I'm curious: Where are we gonna be ranked after spring ball? Where are we gonna be ranked in the middle of the season? At the end of the season? Where are we gonna be ranked one year from now? I predict we're gonna be ranked 20 to 30 slots higher than this. What about the year after? We're gonna build something now, and I'm excited to see where we are in the future.

Do take these rankings with a grain of salt, Go Big Red and always remember: Throw the bones!

Omaha World-Herald: Carriker Chronicles

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Related to this story

Throughout the course of last season, Eric Crouch came to a disappointing realization about the state of Nebraska football fans — many of them were ready to give up. Ready to stop buying season tickets. Ready to stop showing up at Memorial Stadium. Ready to stop watching altogether. But thanks to Scott Frost, Nebraska's most recent Heisman winner no longer believes that to be the case.

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