LINCOLN, Neb - Nebraska hosts Northwestern on Saturday with Heinrich Haarberg set to take the starting quarterback role moving forward. 

After a 20-7 win over Illinois before the bye week, Nebraska looks to comeback rejuvenated, using that winning momentum this weekend. Now, the Huskers know where they lie at quarterback. Offensive Coordinator Marcus Satterfield explained more about Haarberg’s fit in the offense.

“I think the style we’re playing now is in his wheelhouse and he’s doing a good job taking care of the football,” Satterfield said. “With a defense as good as ours, if we can just take care of the football, we have a really good chance to have success.”

Through his first four starts, Haarberg has found the end zone seven total times and leads Nebraska in rushing, averaging 5.1 yards per carry with three touchdowns. As the Kearney Catholic alum gets set for his fifth consecutive start under center, he says the role means more than statistics or a symbol. It comes with pride for those back home.

“I know how much it means to have someone from Kearney represent them,” Haarberg said. “That’s what I try to do every time I’m on the field, in every press conference, out in the community…. I really try to represent them.”

With Haarberg holding the starter role going forward, many may wonder how Jeff Sims has taken it. According to Marcus Satterfield, the same Jeff Sims Nebraska got when he transferred from Georgia Tech, is the same Jeff Sims they have right now.

“He’s one of the main leaders on our football team, he’s a single digit,” Satterfield said. “It’s not going exactly to plan, but he does not flinch. He’s a tough kid, a good teammate, he coaches all the other quarterbacks. During practice, when it’s his turn to get reps, he does it at a high level and he had a great day today throwing the football.”

With the rising stack of offensive injuries for Nebraska,  Marcus Satterfield and Matt Rhule both say the role of Billy Kemp IV will need to become increased. Through six games, the wide receiever has made 20 catches for 219 yards and has two total touchdowns.

He says he’s looking to impact the game however possible.

“If it’s making a big block for the running back to score, that’s how I’ll have to affect the game that day,” Kemp IV said. “ “I want to help the team anyway I can, just here to do my job, and impact the game anyway that I can.”

Defensively, the Huskers shined yet again against Illinois, making a massive goal line stand on the Illini’s initial drive. Defensive Coordinator Tony White says he hopes the Blackshirts bring that same energy against Northwestern.

“The feel after that was made was that they can do anything,” White said. “When they do it on the grass in front of everybody, the validation, the confidence, you see it right then and there.”

Nebraska’s rushing defense remains in the top five both in the Big Ten and nationally. Tony White credits much of that success, to Matt Rhule.

“The one thing he’s always done is be right there with the players. He wants to be eye to eye with them,” White said. “Everything he’s done from sitting down and eating dinner with those guys, hosting position groups for dinner at his house. He gets eye to eye with them so they know, when you’re coaching them hard, you’re loving them hard too.”

The Northwestern-Nebraska matchup has been known to come down to the wire with seven of the last 12 meetings decided by a field goal or less, with last year’s Ireland match being a 31-28 Wildcats win.

In additional news, a Blackshirt has been awarded to Benkelman, NE. Native Phalen Sanford.