04.18.2011 / Both Turner and Carnes Capture the Eyes of Husker Nation at the Spring Game. Blog posting by Mike Babcock, Huskers Illustrated Magazine

For the record, the Red team defeated the White team 32-29 in the Nebraska football teams annual spring intrasquad, game-conditions scrimmage at Memorial Stadium. Brett Maher kicked a 39-yard field goal as time expired for the victory. But the score in the 15th and final practice, however elaborate, of the spring was incidental to individual players.

"Turner is pretty special with the ball in his hands, said Pelini. He has shown that. But has got a long way to go. He is just scratching the surface at how to play the position."

Ask those in the crowd of 66,784 to name which player most captured their imagination, and odds are a significant percentage would name freshman wide receiver Jamal Turner. Two Turner plays, in particular, stood out. Less than 4 minutes into the game, he returned a punt 59 yards. It was the first time he touched the ball. And late in the first half, he caught a pass from Brion Carnes, another newcomer, and carried it into the end zone, on a play covering 49 yards.

After crossing the goal line, Turner did a celebratory somersault, drawing a 15-yard, unsportsmanlike conduct penalty and solidifying his position as a fan favorite. The officials even drew a few boos for tossing the penalty flag. Oh yes, Turner also returned a kickoff 54 yards before limping off the field with 3:47 remaining in the third quarter. Nothing serious, according to coach Bo Pelini; he could have returned.

Turner is “pretty special with the ball in his hands,” said Pelini. “He has shown that. But he has got a long way to go. He is just scratching the surface at how to play the position.” Turner was a high school quarterback in Arlington, Texas, and came to Nebraska as a quarterback. But he was moved to wide receiver when practice resumed following spring break.

“It’s easy to see him make a couple of plays and say, ‘Oh, this guy is going to be the next Jerry Rice.’ You see a lot of good things. You see a lot of things that need to get fixed. His attention to detail needs to pick up, but that’s to be expected. You can say that across the board,” Pelini said.

Things can get fixed. And attention to detail can pick up. That’s what practice is for. But Turner’s transcendent athletic skills are what excited fans during the spring game. “He’s a guy on the come, which is to me a very positive thing because he has a lot ahead of him where he can get a lot better,” said Pelini.

For more great content on the Huskers, check out Huskers Illustrated Magazine or

Did you attend the Husker spring game? What did you think of the game and the plays? Husker fans post your comments now and share them with other Husker fans.

Posted at 10:09 AM | Permalink
Post A Comment

The views expressed on this site may not reflect the views held by First National Bank of Omaha or any of its affiliates. The information provided through this website is not a substitute for any personal advice from a licensed professional. Use of any information or advice shall be solely at the user's own risk.

We welcome your comments. All comment submissions will be reviewed prior to being posted. If the comments are posted, they may be removed at any time. Comments will not be approved if they contain, include or involve any of the following: Obscenity; Crude, vulgar or offensive language and/or symbols; Gang signs or symbols; Derogatory characterizations of any ethnic, racial, sexual or religious groups, personal attacks of any kind towards others; Trespass or the violation of other people's rights or property; Illegal (e.g., discriminatory, harassing) or inappropriate activity, behavior or conduct (e.g., inflicting emotional distress); Any other content that is or could be considered inappropriate, unsuitable or offensive, or clearly "off-topic" as determined by First National Bank of Omaha. To protect your own privacy and the privacy of others, please do not include personally identifiable information such as Social Security Number, phone number or email address in the body of your comment.

For account related questions, please log in to First National Online at and use the secure email located in Contact Us.