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“I think as the year goes on we are going to find out that Derek Carr is a very good quarterback,” Hill said. “He’s stepping into the box with his first two games against two very talented defenses, so his room and margin for error is very small.”

Robbie Rouse averaged 5.1 yards a carry and finished with 86 yards and a TD against Cal, and Hill is counting on the 5-foot-7 junior to help the Bulldogs keep the ball away from the Huskers.

The Bulldogs could find the going tough against Nebraska’s big and fast front seven.

“California has a good defense. Nebraska has a great defense,” Hill said.

Fresno State’s offensive line has four new starters and had to be juggled after center Richard Helepiko sprained an ankle on the third play against Cal. Helepiko has been ruled out Saturday.

The Bulldogs’ situation got even more complicated Friday when the school released a statement acknowledging that some players from the 2010 team have been punished for their roles in a welfare fraud scam. It was not clear how many of the players are on this year’s Fresno State team.

The game is another in a line of tough ones for the Bulldogs, who play Mississippi and Boise State in the next month.

Fresno State has won seven of its last 11 games against BCS opponents but have lost 12 straight against Top 25 teams. The Bulldogs have come close in some of the losses, including a 50-42 defeat at then-No. 1 Southern California in 2005, a seven-point loss at home against Oregon in 2006 and a two-point triple-overtime loss at Texas A&M in 2007.

“History shows that they give a lot of people problems,” Pelini said. “The venue isn’t going to bother them. They’ve played in a lot of different places against a lot of good football teams. They’ve held their own and won a lot of football games. We have to step it up this week and I think our team knows that.”