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Nebraska has upgraded its quarterback room, regardless of who starts

Nebraska football has upgraded at quarterback. That’s one of the clear lessons from spring ball so far for the Huskers.



Nebraska football
Dylan Widger-USA TODAY Sports

The Nebraska football team held its second scrimmage of the spring on Saturday and according to head coach Matt Rhule, “It was the most dominant we have had on offense…ever.”

Rhule said that all three quarterbacks played well for Nebraska football. He even credited Heinrich Haarberg with leading a 99-yard drive. While many are focused on the quarterback competition, Rhule said that would continue into the spring, even though it’s pretty clear that Dylan Raiola is going to be the guy.

One report, from Sean Callahan of Husker Online, citing one practice observer, said that Dylan Raiola was “surgical.” There weren’t many highlights released by Nebraska football on social media, but one was an absolute dart from Raiola down the sideline.

Rhule can say what he wants about the quarterback competition, but there is a clear front-runner. Daniel Kaelin and Haarberg have acquitted themselves well and I hope they do the same during the spring game. I’d feel confident in any of the quarterbacks right now, but Raiola just feels different. He is different.

Naming a starter in the spring is meaningless

At the same time, there’s zero motivation for Rhule to announce him as a starter. Raiola is just a true freshman and needs to go through the process of earning the job. That isn’t done in the spring. Daniel Kaelin also deserves his chance. Haarberg does too.

Haarberg brings a running element the others don’t, which should get him some time as a wildcat quarterback of sorts. Like last season, but in a much smaller dose. I have a feeling Haarberg running 5-10 times per game will be effective. It just doesn’t work when that’s the entire offense.

That won’t be the case this season. As I wrote previously, this passing game can be lethal. The wide receivers are dangerous. That room is as deep and talented as it has ever been.

The same can almost be said about the quarterback room. There’s no question that the biggest task this offseason was to overhaul the position. All the turnovers from last season doomed what should have been an eight or nine-win team.

Rhule was determined not to have that happen again. He landed two Elite 11 quarterbacks and a proven quarterbacks coach. He also upgraded the receiver room and if there’s one thing we do know – 100 percent after the first few weeks of spring ball — is that Nebraska football has upgraded its quarterback position.

Regardless of who ends up starting against UTEP.

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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