Big Ten Notebook: Cornhusker RB Abdullah coming up big
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Nebraska coach Bo Pelini delivered a backhanded compliment to running back Ameer Abdullah earlier this week, knowing it would get a rise out of the sophomore.
Pelini told Abdullah that he is pretty tough for a smaller running back to which the latter replied, “I'll remember that.”
“He is a prideful kid,” Pelini said Tuesday during the Big Ten football coaches' teleconference. “He's been fun to coach.”
The 5-foot-9, 185-pound Abdullah is also a big reason why Nebraska will win the Big Ten's Legends Division barring an upset in the Cornhuskers' final two games.
Abdullah is sixth in the Big Ten in rushing (94.2 ypg), and he has emerged as Nebraska's featured back with Rex Burkhead hampered by knee problems.
Abdullah, an Alabama native, rushed for 116 yards on a career-high 31 carries in a 32-23 win over Penn State last Saturday.
Despite his small stature Abdullah has averaged 24 carries in Nebraska's last four games.
“He's so elusive, he makes it hard for people to get a hard shot on him,” Pelini said. “If anything, I think he wants more carries.”
Michigan needs to beat Iowa on Saturday if the Wolverines want to have any chance of overtaking Nebraska in the Legends Division. But that isn't the only incentive Michigan will take into its final home game.
“Our seniors have never beaten Iowa,” Michigan coach Brady Hoke said.
Michigan is 5-1 in the Big Ten and tied with Nebraska atop the Legends Division. The Cornhuskers hold the tiebreaker because of an earlier win over the Wolverines, which means Michigan will need help from either Minnesota or Iowa.
Spirits still high
Northwestern bowed out of the Legends Division race last Saturday with another deflating conference loss.
But if Tuesday's practice is any indication, the Wildcats (7-3, 3-3) are hardly down on themselves.
“We executed as well as we have all year,” coach Pat Fitzgerald said.
Fitzgerald said his players were so excited that they were chest-bumping him before early-morning meetings. That enthusiasm carried over to the practice field.
“That's what's cool about Big Ten football,” Fitzgerald said. “There's no time for a pity party.”
If any team had reason to feel sorry for itself, it was Northwestern.
The Wildcats blew double-digit fourth-quarter leads earlier this season to Penn State and Nebraska. Northwestern took a three-point lead in the fourth quarter last Saturday at Michigan, but the Wolverines tied the game with a last-second field goal and won in overtime, 38-31.
Scott Brown is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Abercrombie name to shrink from clothing
- Steelers wrap lackluster preseason with loss to Panthers
- Sex offender held for court in address registration case
- Electrical problem sparks fire
- LaBar: Jake ‘The Snake’ Roberts reportedly hospitalized
- Steelers notebook: Safety Mitchell faces former team, hurts leg
- Through the years: Heard’s TD capped Valley rally
- Kittanning razes condemned homes it bought at tax sale
- Valley girls building winning mentality
- Preseason valuable for Steelers’ offensive line
- Study: Foreign students often flee