Big Red Rivalry Advantages Favor OU

Oklahoma should be able to come away with a win in Lincoln but I don't expect it to be easy. Nebraska's defense is too nasty for the Sooners to come by a lot of points but the Husker offense may be at even a larger disadvantage than OU's. Looking at the unit breakdowns I'm gaining more confidence in Oklahoma's ability to score their 6th win of the season.

Quarterbacks

I'll take Landry Jones over either one of Nebraska's signal callers. Zac Lee was benched after the Huskers went 1-2 to start conference play and Cody Green would only be making his second ever career start Saturday night. Either way it goes Jones is the better quarterback.

Advantage: OU

Running Backs

DeMarco Murray and Chris Brown are averaging 4.7 and 4.2 yards per carry with each back scoring 5 rushing touchdowns. Nebraska's Roy Helu is averaging 5.6 yards per carry and has scored 6 rushing touchdowns.

Advantage: Huskers

Receivers/Tight Ends

Just about anyone is going to have an advantage over Oklahoma's tight ends at this point but the Sooners have one of the most explosive receivers in the country in Ryan Broyles with Dejuan Miller and Adron Tennell starting to become actual playmakers in the offense as well. After Niles Paul the Huskers don't have a receiver with more that 16 receptions.

Advantage: OU

Offensive Line

Despite all the early struggles and even with the continuation of dumb penalties Oklahoma's offensive line has shown improvement. The Sooners have given up a total of 7 sacks this season. Nebraska has seen their quarterbacks get put down 10 times this season. While neither unit is eye popping good Oklahoma's has faced stronger defenses and knows what pressure is.

Advantage: OU

Defensive Line

Two of the best defensive tackles in the nation will be on the field today but regardless of how much publicity they get they won't be going head-to-head. This game will be won or lost by the other guys that stack up the line and not just the two superstars. Fortunately for both sides they've got guys like Jeremy Beal and Jared Crick that prevents them from being one man shows.

Advantage: Even

Linebackers

The Sooners are giving up 2.6 yards per carry and Nebraska 2.7 to their opponents. Both teams are stellar against the run but Oklahoma's experience has to account for something.

Advantage: OU

Secondary

Brian Jackson and Dominique Franks may not be Thorpe finalists but they are one of the best cornerback duos in the country. However, Nebraska leads the conference in pass defense and their secondary is a big reason for that.

Advantage: Nebraska

Kicking Game

Tress Way is now performing both punting and kicking duties and doing a solid job at it. However, Alex Henery is one of the best place kickers in the country.

Advantage: Nebraska

Bottom Line

I think that Nebraska's offense will struggle considerably more that Oklahoma's. Not because one defense is better than the other but because the Huskers don't have as many playmakers on offense as OU.   

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