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Tom's Takes: Remember Husker fans, targeting calls are botched across college football

Tom's Takes: Remember Husker fans, targeting calls are botched across college football

Deontai Williams

Nebraska safety Deontai Williams, No. 8, reacts after being called for targeting.

Nebraska falls big to Ohio State in Columbus.

1. After the targeting calls against Nebraska, I know there’s going to be talk about a Big Ten conspiracy after Nebraska didn’t play nice in August and the players filed the lawsuit, etc.

This is a bad idea. You don’t want to go into the next eight games thinking you’re going to get jobbed. Right or wrong, it just gets in the way. Also, targeting calls are botched by officials across the board in college football. It needs to be redefined. So does the punishment.

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An intentional helmet spear is one thing and should be the only cause for ejection. Anything less should be penalized but the player should remain in the game. Meanwhile, the officials did erase a targeting call on JoJo Domann. Which raises the question: Are the zebras out to get NU? Or just not very good?

2. I can only guess the climate in Chicago for Nebraska phone calls to the Big Ten office, but Scott Frost should put a call in to see if at least one of the two targeting ejections from Saturday can be overturned based on replay.

On Fox’s broadcast, Joel Klatt and Mike Pereira (former official) both thought the targeting call on Deontai Williams was wrong and suggested the Big Ten reverse the ejection. Williams was flagged after hitting a receiver with his shoulder, but Williams aimed below the head. The call was ridiculous. The targeting penalty on NU corner Cam Taylor-Britt, who appeared to slightly lead with his helmet on a hit, was less arguable but certainly not worthy of an ejection.

NU defensive backs seemed to aggressively lead with the shoulder. If that’s going to be a problem this season, Frost needs to find out.

3. Frost playing two quarterbacks was a lot of fun to watch Saturday, and I have to believe it will be very effective going forward.

Luke McCaffrey is too dangerous a playmaker to keep on the sideline. He can also provide a curveball when defenses have to figure out both quarterbacks in the same game. The question is, will this be disruptive to team chemistry?

There were certainly no signs of that Saturday. I say keep it going. It’s an edge for Nebraska.

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