Postgame: QB evaluating, Long's injury, Seinfeld

2013-10-12T15:31:00Z 2013-10-12T18:47:14Z Postgame: QB evaluating, Long's injury, SeinfeldBy BRIAN CHRISTOPHERSON JournalStar.com

Husker coach Bo Pelini would have liked the shutout but he was in a good enough mood after a 44-7 to drop a Seinfeld reference, which is always appreciated in this corner.

The good: Nebraska's defense clearly played its best game of the year, with the Husker defensive line, particularly Randy Gregory, pretty much owning Purdue up front.

Nebraska ended up with 435 yards. Purdue had 216, with 55 of those coming on a touchdown pass with 39 seconds.

"I thought it was great. We really were (good) for about three quarters and 14 1/2 minutes," Pelini said. "That last one was unfortunate, but that's what happens. If you let your guard down a little bit, you're going to give up a play. We talk about it all the time. That was unfortunate but I don't think it takes away."

The bad: Senior right guard Spencer Long, an All-American candidate, suffered a knee injury in the first quarter. It doesn't look good.

There was no official word on the injury, but Long watched the second half of the game on crutches, and his position coach John Garrison showed the emotion on his face when the senior's name came up after the game.

It doesn't look good.

"I don't know about that until he gets home and we evaluate it, and we get home and do the MRI," Pelini said. "But let's just hope ... I just hope to God ... it's not as bad as obviously it could be."

The reality check: Redshirt freshman Tommy Armstrong looked his age for the first time this season.

It wasn't a particularly good day for the quarterback. He completed just 6 of 18 passes for 43 yards, though there were a couple of drops, including one by Jamal Turner that likely would have been a touchdown.

Armstrong also threw three interceptions, though the last one was as much on Quincy Enunwa, who had the ball deflect off his hands.

On Saturday, it was senior Ron Kellogg III who was more steady, completing 10 of 13 passes for 141 yards.

"Inconsistent," Pelini said of Nebraska's quarterback play. "I saw some good things. I saw some bad decisions, some things I didn't think we recognized. But I'll tell you, that was a great game for a young quarterback to play in, for a guy who's inexperienced. I can tell you this: They threw a lot at us defensively. They were unconventional. They threw blitz after blitz after blitz. There were a lot of different looks. So I think having gone through that was a good experience for Tommy."

The funny quote: Cornerback Stanley Jean-Baptiste was kicked out of the game for "targeting" a Purdue player on a hit that dislodged a pass.

A few years ago we would have called it a heckuva football play. Now we send a guy to the locker room for it.

Pelini tried not to bite when asked about it. "You guys know me well enough by now," he said with a laugh when asked for his opinion.

The coach couldn't hold back completely though. "Probably the most alarming thing to me was it was upheld. I've got to see the film and I guess see what they saw."

Another question about the enforcement of the targeting rule, and other rules popping up in football, brought us to Seinfeld.

"It's almost like whatever I think is logical, it seems like it goes the other way," Pelini said. "It's kind of like Bizarro World in Seinfeld. Sometimes I think that's the world I'm in."

Reach Brian Christopherson at bchristopherson@journalstar.com or 402-473-7439. Follow him on Twitter @HuskerExtraBC.

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Steven M. Sipple

Steven M. Sipple

Steven is the Husker sports columnist for the Lincoln Journal Star.

Brian Christopherson

Brian Christopherson

Brian is the Husker football beat writer for the Lincoln Journal Star.

Brian Rosenthal

Brian Rosenthal

Brian Rosenthal is the Husker men's basketball beat reporter for the Lincoln Journal star.

Brent C. Wagner

Brent C. Wagner

Brent is the Husker volleyball and women's basketball beat reporter for the Lincoln Journal Star.