The Nebraska Cornhuskers had a rough weekend, getting run and thrown all over by a great UCLA offense. The defensive line for the Huskers has been the critical point for the team so far this season, and things just got a little more interesting.
Chase Rome, the sophomore from Columbia, Missouri and starting defensive tackle has decided to leave the team. Head coach Bo Pelini said that Rome’s “personal goals and personal perception of where he should be on this football team doesn’t match the team goals.”
Rome apparently does not like something the coaches have done this week. Rumors have been flying around that Nebraska is thinking of a switch to a 3-4 defense, but that is unconfirmed.
Rome had started next to Baker Steinkuhler ever since Jared Crick became injured last year. So far this year, he has four tackles in two games. He has played decent but not great so far this year.
His departure means that Thad Randle should get the starting nod. The Huskers have a few options they could look at for playing time, but experience is not on their side.
Jay Guy, Todd Peat Jr, and Kevin Williams all could see the field in the coming weeks, especially if the Huskers are up big and Pelini wants to evaluate personnel.
The Huskers have to figure something out defensively, and though the absence of Rome is going to hurt, it could be a better thing in the long run. A lot more players are going to get experience, which means more can play. Fresher legs could mean more opportunities to get to the quarterback.
As much as it will hurt to have Rome gone, if that was his attitude, I’m glad he is gone. The team is greater than any oneindividual.