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The question of how big a part Luke McCaffrey would play in Nebraska's offensive game plan was answered quickly, and emphatically, Saturday.

On the Huskers' third play from scrimmage, NU's No. 2 quarterback lined up in the slot, motioned into the backfield as Adrian Martinez went under center, then took a handoff on a counter play.

Forty-seven yards later, McCaffrey was finally brought to the turf. Martinez scored on the next play.



That was the first taste of the two-headed monster Nebraska appears to have at quarterback, and it sure tasted good to Husker fans.

"I’ve been telling everyone that our two quarterbacks are two of our best players on our football team, and that certainly played out today," Nebraska coach Scott Frost said. "I thought both played well."

McCaffrey led NU with a game-high 87 rushing yards on just nine carries, and added one catch for 5 yards. In the passing game he was 4-for-5 for 55 yards.


The various ways in which Nebraska used its two quarterbacks showed the willingness of the NU coaching staff to put both on the field together, and that there might be even more tricks up the Huskers' sleeves in future games.

Nebraska lined up both quarterbacks next to each other in the backfield. The Huskers deployed McCaffrey as a receiver, and motioned him into the backfield. They split him out wide.

"I think he brought a good spark," Nebraska right guard Matt Farniok said of McCaffrey. "They're both dynamic players, and having two guys like that out on the field just gives you a lot more weapons to use."

McCaffrey and Martinez (77 yards on 12 carries) combined for 164 of NU's 217 rushing yards.

"Luke's a really talented player," Martinez said. "And I think we're going to continue to find ways to get him involved."

Martinez looked like a man who wasn't lying when he said the quarterback competition with McCaffrey had pushed him through the offseason. The junior finished 12-of-15 through the air for 105 yards and only seemed to force one throw — to a covered Travis Vokolek early in the second quarter. A second incompletion came in the red zone when Kade Warner couldn't pull down a high, hard Martinez throw.

"I would say I wasn't affected at all (by the quarterback rotation)," Martinez said. "I thought the coaches did a good job, I thought we had a solid game plan, and Luke did a good job when he got in the game."

It wasn't all sunshine and rainbows. Both players lost fumbles while trying to make something happen in the running game. Martinez's was returned 55 yards for a touchdown.

"If you're going to run your quarterbacks like we do, then they've got to take care of the football just like everybody else," Frost said. "And we'll certainly address that this week."

But with two of its top players manning the same position, don't expect Nebraska to shy away from getting both on the field together plenty going forward.

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