LINCOLN, Neb. – The Nebraska football team practiced for just two hours on Tuesday night, putting on the full pads for the first time this fall.
“It is good to get through the progression of what they call acclimatization, I think it is a great idea and I frankly worry more on the days when you don’t have pads on than I do this day when you put full gear on,” head coach Mike Riley said. “We did however do a little more ‘live football’ on our first day of full gear than before.”
It caused guys like Tyson Broekmeier and Director of Player Personnel Ryan Gunderson to fill in during dummy drills.
Because of the injuries at the wide receiver spot, Riley said it has caused him to change practices a bit. He would like to run two-fields, but it’s not happening. It’s really hurting the running backs, because there are some talented players not getting enough reps said Riley.
In addition, defensive tackle Vincent Valentine sat out of practice. Riley said he was day-to-day.
Quote of the night:
“You are too smart to do that.” – Keith Williams after a bad route by true freshman Lavan Alston.
* Senior Ryne Reeves started at center and redshirt freshman Nick Gates was the starting right tackle. We are seeing a lot of rotation up front, which is what the coaches were trying to get everyone ready for this spring.
* Speaking of rotation, Riley said almost all the quarterbacks, have taken second-team reps. Tonight it was Ryker Fyfe getting the majority of them. Fyfe looked fairly good in the pocket and delivered on nice balls. At times when the pocket collapsed, we saw a different quarterback than maybe what we would have expected last year. It’s not surprising; he’s a year older.
* Starting quarterback Tommy Armstrong had an up and down day, as he looked good in 7-on-7s at times. He really can throw a dart. The biggest thing I noticing when Armstrong struggles is during 11-on-11, when you don’t know what type of pass rush you are going to have come at him.
* Junior wide receiver Alonzo Moore had a great practice with four other receivers out. He had a bad drop that would have maybe went for a touchdown a deep ball, but had a nice route over the middle that went for 70-yards. He also had a nice catch on the sidelines that would have normally been about a yard gain, but he turned it into seven after a nice move.
* Senior wide receiver Jamal Turner might have had the play of the day. After seeing his intended pass intercepted by sophomore corner Josh Kalu, Turner didn’t give up on the play. After about two steps by Kalu up field, the ball was back in Turner’s hand after a nice strip.
* True freshman Stanley Morgan had a great practice. It was highlighted by a touchdown down the far sideline, beating redshirt freshman Trai Mosley on a fly route. The ball was a perfect pass from Ryker Fyfe. Mosley took it in for six. It ended up being a 70-yard score. “He’s been very impressive for a young player,” said Riley.
* Mikale Wilbon had a very nice couple of runs tonight with the full pads on. He’s hard to arm tackle. On one play he was met at the line of scrimmage by sophomore safetey Kieron Williams. A second later Wilbon was up-field and Williams was on the ground after a stiff arm from the running back. “Mikale I think has had a big jump from spring practice to today. I think he has made a very, very good improvement and I think that comes from him being able to utilize his ability. It is exciting—he is doing well.”
* True freshman Mohamed Barry has a long ways to go at the linebacker spot and I would be very surprised if he had any sort of impact this year. He really struggles when somebody gets their hands on him. Linebacker coach Trent Bray kept preaching, “violent hands” today. He didn’t really see much of that in high school.
* True freshman tight end Matt Snyder had a nice catch on what looked to be a post-route. The ball was thrown up high by Zack Darlington, which was the perfect place for the Snyder to go up and catch it.
* Sedrick King had a tackle for loss on the third-string defense. First time I have noticed the defensive end.
* Riley mentioned Dylan Utter as a guy who was competing to be a starter. We will have a full story on him tomorrow.
* True freshman Antonio Reed doesn’t look like a safety when he is in the secondary. He looks like a linebacker.
* Sophomore Drew Brown won on the kicking front again today and looks to be taking control of the competition between him and JUCO transfer Jamie Sutcliff. Brown’s brother, former Husker Kris Brown, was in attendance and helped his younger bro during pre-practice.
* Former offensive line coach Milt Tenopir was at practice tonight.
* Sophomore corner Chris Jones is playing a bit banged up, but trying to work through it at cornerback. I get the impression he knows missing a few days at that spot might really cost him.
* BTN was in attendance after watching Iowa practice earlier in the day. I think they will be doing their full show from Nebraska tomorrow.
* Nebraska commit Ben Stille was at his second practice in a row tonight.
BIG RED REPORT WILL BE POSTING A PRACTICE VIDEO IN THE COMING MINUTES.....