Nebraska football fans take their team seriously. The tens of thousands of loyal Husker backers that jam Memorial Stadium on a weekly basis, each year, will testify to that. On the heels of a disappointing 2018 season, you would never know that the Huskers finished 4-8. In fact, the optimism for 2019 is literally growing by the day in Lincoln, and for good reason. I want to share who I feel needs to be difference makers on the 2019 team. It's also worth mentioning that Adrian Martinez is an early favorite for the Heisman Trophy.

Frost brings credibility

Huskers coach Scott Frost guided the UCF program to a perfect 13-0 record in 2017, however, as reported by ESPN, his first year back at his alma mater was a bit difficult. The positives of a 4-8 record? Finding out you have a stud at quarterback in Adrian Martinez, your young running backs look strong and your reputation, along with the talent already on the current roster, is helping you land a lot of three- and four-star talent.

The list is long, and already the early reviews are very positive. Four-star running backs Dedrick Mills and Rahmir Johnson have already committed to the Huskers along with a duo of four-star linebackers Jackson Hannah and Nick Henrich. If the Huskers had a major Achilles heel in 2018, it was giving up yards in big chunks.

These additions at linebacker, along with a pair of three-star defensive ends in Garrett Nelson and Jamin Graham, not only bolster and strengthen a growing squad, but it shows that under Frost, the Huskers are going to be able to recruit at a high level.

Just think how great next recruiting season could be if the Huskers win eight-plus games in 2019!

Vegas oddsmakers noticing

One thing that is never too early to look at is how the Las Vegas oddsmakers think your team is going to do a season in advance. Right now, the Huskers seem to be on their early radar as a team they believe will make some serious noise next season.

The Huskers may have had a down year in 2018, but oddsmakers took note of how great they played down the stretch - especially against Ohio State, Michigan State, and Iowa.

With Adrian Martinez in control at quarterback, sportsbooks have the Huskers ranked just behind the Wisconsin Badgers and rival Iowa Hawkeyes as the early favorites to win the Big Ten West division next season. When people outside the state start to recognize change is coming, you know things are on the rise.

In case you were curious, the countdown to opening weekend for the Huskers is down to 261 days, but who's counting! Nebraska opens the 2019 season on August 31, at home, against South Alabama. The first Big Ten contest takes place on September 21, against Illinois.