Rapid Reaction: Rolling in the snow; recognition for Verduzco; familiarity with Tampa 2
Nebraska’s first actual game in what could be iffy weather conditions hasn’t had an effect on the Huskers’ preparations for Illinois.
Temperatures are expected to be near freezing, with gusty winds, with the breeze really the only thing that has NU’s attention at this point, head coach Scott Frost said Thursday.
“Our guys live in this every day, so I don’t think temperature is an issue,” he said.
The team did spend at least a few minutes in the snow Thursday morning before finishing practice inside the Hawks Championship Center.
“We still have a couple guys that have only seen it once or twice in their life,” Frost said, “so we went out and rolled around in it a little bit.”
* Frost was happy to see his quarterbacks coach, Mario Verduzco, on the Broyles Award watch list for the nation’s top assistant coach.
“Mario’s one of the best in the country at coaching quarterbacks. I’ve known that a long time and I think other people are starting to figure it out,” Frost said. “To get an 18-year-old playing the way he’s playing speaks volumes about what he’s doing.”
* Frost is also somewhat familiar with the Tampa 2-style defense Illinois will run Saturday with head coach Lovie Smith calling plays. Smith arrived at Tampa Bay a couple years after Frost left the Buccaneers during his playing days, but NU’s coach still sees some familiar traits.
“There’s still stuff I recognize. Obviously I have a fond place in my heart for all those guys. Especially Mike Tomlin and Raheem Morris (Tampa assistants when Frost was there). “I loved my time there, loved the scheme and the system. It’s sound. That’s the best part of that scheme when I was playing in it. You knew where you sere supposed to be, knew what you were supposed to do.”
* The Huskers are expecting to play a team with some extra energy after Illinois routed Minnesota last week.
“They’re playing for a lot. Obviously being a coach and watching what they accomplished last week, that’s going to give them a boost an some enthusiasm. They’re going to come here expecting to win the game. So we have a challenge ahead of us,” Frost said.
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