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Nugent: How adding Fordham could have big benefits to the Huskers historically

Huskers versus Huskers
Huskers versus Huskers(Scott Bruhn | Scott Bruhn)
Published: May. 3, 2021 at 7:42 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - History will be made September 4th when Fordham comes to Lincoln to play the Huskers. The two programs will play for the first time. What really will matter is this, Nebraska will surely come away with a win and the Rams will head back to New York with $500,000. That’s what they will be paid to play this game.

A late add to the schedule that has been in flux this offseason thanks to COVID-19. The situation has actually presented a solution to a problem. Now that the Huskers won’t be traveling back from Ireland, they can play a game Labor Day weekend that will serve many purposes.

The program has been looking for a way to add a September home game for a while, we first learned about it in early March when Bill Moos re-confirmed Nebraska would indeed travel to Oklahoma after word leaked the Huskers were looking to add a home game potentially replacing the trip to Norman.

No doubt replacing Oklahoma with a FCS team would be a big benefit to the record. The Sooners are a heavy favorite against Nebraska and Nebraska would be a favorite against any FCS team.

Improving the record early is part of this move. The decision to play Fordham early and cancel the November game against Southeastern Louisiana won’t matter when the season is over. In both scenarios, the Huskers should have a win against a FCS team, but the timing will be important.

First of all, if things go south in Champaign and Norman the Huskers can still be a .500 team with wins against Buffalo and Fordham. Far better, than 1-2 without the Fordham game. The optics matter more than ever after the past couple seasons.

It will be ideal for recruiting, it’s an urgent situation off the pandemic. Bringing recruits to Memorial Stadium in September is more attractive than in November.

Last, the sellout streak, it’s not guaranteed. Adding Fordham and canceling Southeastern Louisiana eliminates a mid-November home game against a FCS team that carries very little weight unless the Huskers are fighting for bowl eligibility. And if Nebraska is below .500 at that point, it might be hard to find the motivation to sit in a cold stadium that afternoon.

The start will matter, this makes sense.

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