Fair or not, the discussion of has-beens in college football always comes back to Nebraska and Miami. The U was dominant in the 1980s and the early 2000s, only to fall into mediocrity over the past decade. Nebraska was a powerhouse under Tom Osborne and thinks it should still be one, but the Huskers haven't won a conference title since the 1990s and are stuck on four-loss seasons with coach Bo Pelini.
Is this the year that any of those narratives change? Is this the year that Miami-Nebraska means what it used to mean? That would make for a nice story, but it doesn't seem like it. The Hurricanes opened the season with a 31-13 loss to Louisville and have two tough games in a row against Nebraska and Duke. The Cornhuskers may benefit from an easy Big Ten West, but they nearly lost to McNeese State and don't look like a nationally relevant team right now.
In a battle of has-beens, this might end up being the fight to see who is less mediocre. If that doesn't get you excited for non-conference football, I don't know what will.
How to watch, listen, and stream
Game time: 8 pm ET
Online streaming: WatchESPN
Rankings and records: Nebraska is 3-0 and ranked 24th in the AP Poll and 22nd in the Coaches Poll. Miami is 2-1 and unranked.
Vegas: Nebraska opened as an 8-point favorite but is now a 7.5-point favorite. The over/under is 58.
Weather forecast: A 60 percent chance of thunderstorms with a high of 84 and a low of 61.
Two things at stake
Nebraska can't afford a loss it it wants to stay in the rankings and be taken seriously as the team to beat in the Big Ten West. A blowout win would help convince people that the Huskers are for real.
A 2-2 start would not be ideal for Al Golden's team, but a win in this game could help convince some people that the Hurricanes are a true contender in the ACC Coastal.
One big matchup
The Nebraska defense improved mightily at the end of last season, but it's still somewhat of a question mark. McNeese State had far too many good drives against the Cornhuskers, and while the unit did improve against Fresno State, it hasn't proven itself against a great offense. Miami won't provide that threat, but the Hurricanes have more talent than any team Nebraska has faced, and if they get going, they could put up a fight in Lincoln. If the defense can't get off the field, Nebraska will be in trouble.