Aurora’s Allen sees ‘no better time’ than now to play for Nebraska
Redshirt freshman Austin Allen — a member of the 2017 recruiting class from Aurora, Nebraska — has appeared in every game this season. He recorded his first career reception against Bethune-Cookman on Oct. 27. A week later he caught a 41-yard pass against Ohio State, the longest by a Husker tight end since 2015.
Below is an interview conducted with Allen about his career thus far and what it means to play for the in-state school:
Q: Was the Illinois game the coldest you have ever played in?
A: When I was in high school we played Alliance my senior year in the playoffs. It was raining and about 30 degrees. That wet mix with the wind was the coldest.
Q: You almost scored your first touchdown this season. What will it be like when that happens?
A: It is always going to be a dream come true for any kid in the state. I think it will be just another play when it happens. Guys on the team make plays all the time, and when I get my number called hopefully I can do that also.
Q: When the turnaround happens for Nebraska football, what is that going to take and how neat will that be for you?
A: I didn’t get to experience what this thing was like in the ’90s. I hope it gets there real soon. For that to happen we have to be all bought in. That is for any championship team. We still have some guys that think it’s alright to miss class and miss meetings. It’s just unacceptable. We have to be all bought in, not just 80 or 90 percent of the team.
Q: What advice would you give the in-state kid that is thinking about coming to Nebraska?
A: I think there is no better time to step into the program. Coach (Scott Frost) is giving a lot of the guys in the state an opportunity. On the team, I couldn’t tell if a guy is a scholarship guy or a walk-on. Everyone is treated the same. Some kids come here as a walk-on with a dream of earning a scholarship and they are coming true. Coach has been really good about handing out scholarships lately.
Q: To what do you attribute your growth as a player in the short time you’ve been at Nebraska?
A: I think overall understanding of the game has been the biggest. A lot of times in high school I got so focused on basketball it was hard for me to understand coverages and whatnot. Now that I have stepped in here and focused on football I can take the time to read defenses and know what I am looking at when I line up across the ball.
Q: Your alma mater, Aurora, plays in the state championship game next week. Will you be watching?
A: I for sure will be watching. I normally have class when that game will kick off. I already talked to the teacher about missing class that day. I have watched every game so far on the different networks that have been covering it. Hopefully they can bring a championship back to the town. It’s been a decade or so.