There’s no such thing as a perfect athlete.
Nebraska head coach Bo Pelini doesn't care.
He works feverishly with his charges in the relentless pursuit of the unattainable.
In order for the Cornhuskers to bounce back from the thud of the 2010 Big 12 Championship Game and the Holiday Bowl, a few improvements need to be made.
Pelini is putting the finishing touches on “his” staff, which is a huge step in the right direction.
What other items should be on the docket?
With a new staff comes renewed optimism.
It is believed that Pelini is working some of the current hires around and will be injecting some new blood into the system.
Regardless of what offensive formations Nebraska wants to take going into 2011, comfort within the system and talent on hand need to be conditions 1A and 1B.
This helps the team to work towards one common goal offensively and allows the new recruiting coordinator to fine-tune needs and wants for the current cycle.
Aside from Kyler Reed’s fleet feet and some small growth by Brandon Kinnie, 2010 was a step backwards for Nebraska’s wide receivers.
Niles Paul, an athlete who was lauded preseason as a potential first-round NFL draft pick, caught only 39 passes for 516 yards and a single TD.
The biggest story for Paul was the sheer number of balls that either bounced off or bobbled away from his hands.
With Ted Gilmore likely removed from the picture, Nebraska gets a second chance.
The best news for the passing game: There are plenty of young, talented receivers to work with.
Five yards forward, 10 yards back.
There were few offensive constants for Nebraska last season, but offensive line penalties were a guarantee.
Barney Cotton’s crew found itself jumping early, holding, clipping and just about anything else that a poorly disciplined line would do.
Cotton recruits very well, with the most recent recruiting class being a testament to that.
Unless he can find a way to take the talent he has and make sure they use proper technique, the young guns won’t be of much help regardless.
The return of Jared Crick in 2011 will be huge for the Cornhuskers.
After being able to produce excellent numbers as both a sophomore and junior, Crick can finally end his career free from unattainable expectations.
Last season, all eyes were on Crick as Ndamukong Suh’s replacement.
Crick didn’t put up the same numbers but did inherit the current Detroit Lion’s double teams.
In 2011, Nebraska needs to start working in talent around Crick to ensure that his departure won’t sting too badly.
Look for Cameron Meredith, Josh Williams and Jason Ankrah to continue working their way in on the ends.
Baker Steinkuhler, Terrence Moore, Chase Rome, Thaddeus Randle and Jay Guy will likely help relieve Crick at defensive tackle.
Lavonte David’s back, and the Big Ten should take notice.
Big 12 offensive coordinators threw the kitchen sink at David.
It didn't prevent the whirlwind linebacker from wreaking havoc in their backfields.
2011 should prove no different, but Nebraska needs to prepare for life without Lavonte just as much as they do with Crick.
Will Compton and Sean Fisher return following a season and a half of injured games between them last season
Graham Stoddard and Alfonzo Whaley offer depth, but whether or not they can help replace David is a huge question mark.
Working in new recruit David Santos alongside David might help lessen his learning curve.
One would think that losing a talent like Prince Amukamara would be the near death of a secondary.
Despite the loss of coach Marvin Sanders, Nebraska still will have one of the premier secondaries in the country for a second season.
Alfonzo Dennard, a slightly more physical cornerback than Amukamara, will hold down the fort.
Ciante Evans, Corey Cooper, Justin Blatchford, Andrew Green and a host of others will provide head coach Bo Pelini with endless options to torment opposing receivers.
To think that the Cornhuskers can simply replace the output of the highest-scoring player in Nebraska history is silly.
To suggest that Nebraska could do that and find someone to fill in for the touchback machine that was Adi Kunalic is simply absurd.
Mauro Bondi and Jason Dann may not be either Alex Henery or Kunalic, but a legacy has to start somewhere.
If there’s one thing that Nebraska can claim throughout the past couple of decades, it’s that the Cornhuskers seem to grow great kickers next to the cornstalks.
Recruiting has likely been simmering lately with a new staff getting comfortable in Lincoln.
Incoming recruit Charles Jackson was a bit upset after finding out that the man he thought would be teaching him was stepping down shortly after he signed to play for Nebraska.
“I think they should've told me before I signed. I didn't have any idea. They broke the guy code,” Jackson told the Omaha World-Herald.
Nebraska has at least 16 to 18 offers to give for this recruiting cycle and already have one in linebacker Michael Rose, who committed last July.
The Cornhuskers’ new recruiting coordinator is going to get a chance to earn his pay very quickly.
Last season featured playmakers, but the Cornhuskers seemed to be a bit disorganized.
There weren’t two or three players that truly stepped up to take the team on their backs.
Rex Burkhead would be perhaps the best example of what Nebraska needs more of.
Burkhead led more by example.
Returning to the days of Grant Wistrom and Jason Peter, in terms of both vocal and physical leadership, couldn't hurt.
The possibility of one hand not knowing what the other’s doing can be toxic to a football team.
Finding Nebraska's offensive identity will help, as quarterbacks, running backs, receivers and the offensive line will have one solid focus.
The defensive side of the ball won’t be an issue under Pelini’s watch.
If the two sides can bond and find friendly, yet firm competition amongst themselves, the Cornhuskers will only excel as a result.
Nebraska was on the right track in 2010.
The Cornhuskers' goals were to win the Big 12 North division, bring home the conference's championship trophy and find themselves in a BCS bowl.
Beating Texas would’ve been nice too.
One out of four simply isn’t going to be good enough.
The Big Ten isn’t going to be kind to the Cornhuskers, setting up likely the most vicious in-conference schedule possible for their first two years as a member.
Fortune may smile on Nebraska, though, if it can make the aforementioned adjustments.
The Cornhuskers should walk into the 2011 season with the same goals and expectations.
They may be in far better shape to reach the peak of the mountain than many think.
Offseason? What offseason?
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