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The Nebraska Cornhuskers have no problem playing night games moving forward.
Night games have become a major issue for the Big Ten after the new media deal mandated night games on NBC late into the season.
Traditionally speaking, night games late in the season is something a large chunk of teams don’t play. There are many different reasons why schools cite not wanting to play night games and for years, the Big Ten hasn’t mandated it in the later weeks.
Well, NBC’s B1G rights package includes night games, and that’s caused some major headaches as new commissioner Tony Petitti tries to iron out all the details with the season just months away.
Nebraska is ready for action under the lights.
There’s one program that definitely will suit up for night games in November:
The Nebraska Cornhuskers.
Athletic director Trev Alberts made it clear Monday that the Cornhuskers will play night games no matter the time of year.
While it’s nice of Nebraska to offer itself up for night games – the Cornhuskers could use all the attention they can get – the Big Ten has to massage Penn State, Ohio State, Michigan and Wisconsin into wanting the same.
NBC doesn’t want a sub-.500 Nebraska squad taking primetime spots. It wants top tier games. Could the squad in Lincoln eventually get there?
Without a doubt, but they’re not there right now. Even being far from where Nebraska used to be, it’s still a premier and prestigious program. The fact it’s throwing its weight behind November night games is a good sign for Petitti.
Games late at night can be an issue.
There are some legit concerns with night games late in the season in the Big Ten. During my time at Wisconsin, it wasn’t a secret the administration didn’t want games starting in November after the sun was down due to the cold weather.
The last thing university officials want is a packed football stadium full of drunk people when it’s zero degrees outside. That’s a recipe for disaster. There’s already enough problems with drunk people passing out when the weather is good. What is going to happen if someone passes out and it’s -15 degrees outside? That’s just one example of why late night games aren’t exactly loved by some Big Ten programs. It’s an extreme one for sure, but it’s a very real concern Wisconsin officials had as of about a decade ago.
Night games are definitely going to change for the B1G, and Nebraska will be a part of it. How the rest of it shakes out definitely remains to be seen.