You remember the 1998 season right? Bobby Newcombe takes the reigns from Scott Frost, who led the team to an undefeated National Championship season the year before.
Newcombe plays well but is injured in the game against UAB, setting the stage for Eric Crouch to take over. Crouch would start and win the next game over Cal before being supplanted by Newcombe again at starter. He would start the next five games, losing only one, before injuring his knee again. Shockingly, Monte Cristo earns the start against Texas but is quickly replaced by Crouch following a disastrous start. Despite falling 20-16, Crouch remains the starter for the rest of the season.
Prior to the 1999 season, Bobby Newcombe once again earned the starting role for the Huskers tempting Crouch to transfer. Well, Crouch stayed and earned the start in the third game of the season, never looking back.
I think that decision turned out pretty well.
In my eye's, we have an eerily similar situation when dealing with this year's Nebraska squad. There's the returning starter, Martinez, along with the potential rookie suitors in Jamal Turner and Bubba Starling (possibly). Cody Green is probably out of the mix.
While I expect him to start, the oft-injured Martinez is bound to suffer at least a minor injury. This will set the stage for a Crouch-like opportunity for either Starling or Turner.
The question is, will they take this opportunity and run with it? Or will they flatten under the pressure?
The other question is how Martinez would handle a transition like this? Would he be a team player like Newcombe and make the transition to wide-out? If he did, it may create a pretty dynamic, explosive offense that many of us haven't seen in a long time.
I'd say since about 11 years ago when Crouch and Newcombe were roaming the field together.
Am I saying that this will undoubtedly happen? No. Nor am I saying that if it does it will be a smooth transition and create an offensive juggernaut.
What I am saying is that the stage is set for an eerily similar occurrence and let's face it, that one didn't turn out too bad.