Lincoln, Neb. — The Nebraska football team practiced for a little over two hours on Monday morning in full pads inside the Hawks Championship Center.
Offensive Coordinator Troy Walters addressed the media following practice and talked about what he expects from the team with only two weeks of spring practice remaining.
“We’re pretty much done with our install,” Walters said. “We got the majority of our playbook in so now it’s about being precise, being detailed, finishing. Now it’s the point of spring where it’s ‘hump’ day, ‘hump’ period. Where you’re halfway over, halfway through and guys can get into a lull and feel sorry for themselves, feel a little tired. We can’t have that. We’ve got to see guys push through, we have to see guys have a sense of urgency out on that field. So it’s from a mental aspect of just being dogs [who] love going out there, competing. Every play, every practice and then detailing everything. Fine tuning the things we have installed, playing fast and then being ready for a great spring game.
“I told our guys right now, you know in two weeks you’re playing in front of 90,000, plus the Big Ten Network, parents are going to be here. Get yourself ready for that game, and you do that by how you prepare each time we’re on that field.”
Walters went on to talk about the Husker tight ends.
“We have a good group,” Walters said. “They just have to become playmakers, and they have to be able to stretch the field. They’re doing a good job in the run game, and we’re pretty stout up front, but we need to make sure we become more weapons in the pass game. We’re going to game-plan a scheme where they get one-on-one match ups with linebackers and safeties, and they’ve got to win those. So [the coaches] are doing a great job working with those guys to become more complete pass catchers, and they’re staying after and working all that, so if we get that working, it will open up everything else in this offense. ”
Walters also touched on the running back room and which players are standing out so far this spring.
“The name that keeps coming up is Brody Belt,” Walters said. “He’s doing an awesome job, not only as a running back, but as a receiver. He’s kind of been that Wan’Dale [Robinson], Miles [Jones], a guy that can run the ball well in the backfield, but he’s also a weapon on the perimeter. We get him matched up against linebackers, he’s going to win that most of the time. He’s done a tremendous job in terms of that group, and he’s going to continue to see more work.”
Walters was asked if he expected Belt to impress as much as he has this spring.
“Not right off the bat,” Walters said. “He was on practice squad last year, and you really didn’t know much about him because he was down with the defense. He’s had a great offseason, it shows that he’s taking coaching and studying the playbook and knows what to do when his number is called. He has that grit, he has that ‘want’ to that you like. He wants to be great, and he kind of plays with a chip on his shoulder. Walk-on, undersized, but that’s not going to stop him so I love his attitude and he continues to make plays.”
The Huskers will continue their spring season with a morning practice on Wednesday. The annual Red-White Spring Game will be played on Saturday, April 13 at Memorial Stadium with kickoff set for 1 p.m. The game will be televised on the Big Ten Network with the Husker Sports Network providing live radio coverage.