Almost ready for the Holidays

It's only one more practice after today before players take off for the holidays. Christmas cheer may soon be the theme, but right now it's still all about the Huskies. And as Head Coach Bo Pelini said, he expects a different Husky team than the one they beat in September.

Bo first talked about the fact that eight guys are graduating tomorrow, two of whom (Roy Helu Jr. and Prince Amukamara) graduated in three and a half years. Both are Sociology majors.

The focus for the team has obviously taken a direct turn toward Washington, the team they will face in the Holiday Bowl. It's a team Nebraska thumped earlier in the year, 56-21. Some would say that if it's not broke, don't fix it. But common sense would tell you that not everything that worked before will work the second time around, even if it's in the same season. "There will be somethings similar. There will be some things that are different," Head Coach Bo Pelini said.

One of the key pieces Washington no doubt hopes is considerably different, is the success quarterback Jake Locker has this time versus the 4-of-20 performance he had against Nebraska earlier in the year. "He's a good football, and they've gotten better as a football team. They are a much better team than they were in September," Pelini said.

Washington is not only better, but they are riding a three-game winning streak, while Nebraska comes off the tough loss to Oklahoma in the Big 12 title game. "They have momentum going, so it will be a big challenge for us," he said.

Senior wide receiver Niles Paul continues to rehab the foot, but he is now wearing regular shoes for the first time since the injury. Pelini said that he still thinks Niles has a "good" shot of playing in the bowl game, and he's hopeful he'll make it back.

One player who will obviously be there and that's good news for the Huskers, is junior linebacker Lavonte David. Pelini said that from the last time they faced the Huskies to now, it's a completely different player you are saying. "He's come light years since then. He was put in a tough situation, and he had to grow up in a hurry," he said. "it's a credit to him and how he was coached."

On another note, Pelini said that he is pretty sure that there will be a couple of juniors will submit their names as part of the evaluation process for next year's NFL Draft. But Pelini also said that he believes the entire group will be back for their senior campaigns.

On a funny note, and this will tell you how dialed in Pelini gets to what he's doing and is almost oblivious to the outside world, a question was asked about how Bo felt about the names given to the new Big Ten divisions, that being "Legends" and "Leaders."

The naming has caught a bit of a firestorm, as Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delaney said that he was estimated a 90 percent disapproval rate for those names, which may prompt them to reevaluate that decision. When asked how he felt about the names and the idea that they might already change, Bo didn't even know the divisions were named in the first place. "I don't know anything about that. I don't care what they call it," he said with a chuckle.

Click the following link for the full post practice audio with Bo Pelini

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