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Colorado game feels like a must-win for Nebraska football

It might be over the top, but the Colorado game feels like a turning point for the Nebraska football program.

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Dylan Widger-USA TODAY Sports

It’s hard to say that beating a team fresh off a 4-8 season is a must-win game, but it sure feels like the pressure will be on Nebraska football to beat Colorado in September.

Not only is the game going to be in primetime, against Coach Prime (Deion Sanders) but it just feels like Nebraska finally needs to prove it can rise to the occasion.

Colorado probably doesn’t have the depth of Nebraska. But the Buffaloes do have arguably the best quarterback in the 2025 draft class and the best overall player in college football in Travis Hunter.

Underestimate those guys at your own risk. We saw how the Nebraska defense struggled to stop Sanders last year. My hope is that the pass rush gets home more frequently in Lincoln, but stopping the Buffaloes will be a challenge.

The hope is that stopping Nebraska is a challenge for the Buffs too. In last year’s game, Nebraska beat itself with silly mistakes that made what should have been a competitive game, into a lopsided affair.

Talent-wise, Nebraska was right there. Frankly, outside of the quarterback position, I’d take Nebraska in 2023. With the quarterbacks more even, the Huskers should have an even bigger edge.

Beating Colorado would set the tone for 2024

That’s why they need to win this game. It’s a tone-setter. A loss would take all the wind out of the sails. It’s just one game, but it feels more important than that.

Maybe if Matt Rhule and the Huskers went to a bowl game last season, it wouldn’t feel as important. But this program has to get past the bogeyman (close games) at some point. It has to perform on a big stage and it needs to win a “big” game.

Colorado qualifies because of the rivalry and because of last season.

It’s time to turn the page on the era of underachieving. That starts with a butt-kicking on Sept. 7 or at least just a win over Colorado.

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Chris has worked in sports journalism since 2005 writing for multiple newspapers and websites such as the Bleacher Report and Fansided before starting Husker Big Red, A fan site for hardcore followers of the #Huskers offering articles, podcasts, videos and more exclusive content on all things Nebraska

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