It’s going to be a nasty, ugly day in Lincoln Saturday when Michigan State hits the road to take on Nebraska. For the struggling Michigan State offense, let’s hope it doesn’t add to the ugliness.

This is a game the 6-4 Spartans have to win to salvage a decent season. With Rutgers waiting in the final week, finishing 8-4 founds way better than 7-5.

Here are five things I want to see from the Spartans this weekend against Nebraska:

1. Get something out of whoever starts at quarterback …

Michigan State has a problem at quarterback. You’ve got one quarterback (Brian Lewerke) who is too hurt to play at a high level, and you’ve got another quarterback (Rocky Lombardi) who’s too young and inexperienced to play at that same high level. They both had a chance last week in the loss to Ohio State, but both really struggled. Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio has remained mum on the subject of who starts all week. What we know for sure is that whoever plays has to provide something to this offense. Nebraska’s defense ranks near the bottom in just about all Big Ten stats, so QB-1, go score some points.

2. … Dantonio needs to make the right choice at quarterback

Dantonio has been getting roasted for remaining loyal to Lewerke despite his obvious limitations from his throwing shoulder injury. But the fact is, he’s simply not been good. He was just 5-for-25 passing against Michigan in the game where he got hurt, and he was just just 11-for-28 passing against Ohio State. Lombardi may be young and raw, and he’ll probably make some mistakes, but at least he’s healthy and can throw the ball. It’s going to be a horrible weather day in Lincoln on Saturday, so it only makes sense for Lombardi to start. It’ll be interesting to see if Dantonio feels the same way.

3. Don’t be fooled by Nebraska’s 3-7 record

Nebraska lost their first six games of the season, and the Cornhuskers looked horrible in doing so on both sides of the ball. Any Spartans fans who checked in on Michigan’s 56-10 dismantling of Nebraska back in late September surely wondered in Nebraska would ever win a game. But since then, they are 3-1 with the only loss a narrow 36-31 defeat at Ohio State. Their defense is not very good, but their offense has been lighting it up. This is a game of strength vs. strength and the Spartans better be careful. Winning at Lincoln isn’t going to be easy.

4. Spartans’ talented defense needs to pass stiff test

Nebraska’s offense has rolled up at least 450 yards in each of its last seven games. The Cornhuskers are led by freshman quarterback Adrian Martinez and running back Devine Ozigbo (958 yards rushing, 7.5 yards per carry). The Spartans still are No. 1 in the nation against the run, (76.5 yards per game), and No. 3 in the Big Ten in points allowed (19.7 per game). They have had to carry this team most of the season, and they’re going to have to do it again this week against Nebraska. Any slip-up, and there will be trouble.

5. Find a way to run the ball in sloppy weather

Temperatures near freezing. A potential mix of rain and snow. Winds. It’s going to be an ugly day in Lincoln, so Michigan State’s offense, which has really struggled to run the ball most of the year, desperately needs something to step up and carry the load on Saturday.  Maybe youngsters La’Darius Jefferson or Jalen Nailor step up, or maybe Connor Heyward has another big day like he did at Maryland. Somebody needs to step up.