LINCOLN, Neb. - When Nebraska secondary coach Brian Stewart was a player, he liked fellow defensive back Albert Lewis, who was starring for the Kansas City Chiefs.
“I thought he was the best corner,” said Stewart.
The only problem was, they weren’t anything alike. While Stewart could appreciate his craft, he couldn’t emulate it. He wasn’t tall enough. After all, Lewis stood about 6-foot-2.
“My position coach said, ‘you like somebody is three inches taller than you. You need to watch Frank Minnifield or Hanford Dixon – somebody your size,” said Stewart. “I learned that if I looked at him, his movement, his body structure, I could see how he was doing what he was doing.”
Stewart uses the same philosophy with his defensive backs room today.
“I say, ‘hey, let’s grab the tape. Let’s look him at him. Let’s look at the techniques and the coverages we do,’” said Stewart.
"If a kid’s looking at Deion Sanders and he's fast and he's quick, he's got a pretty good chance of being halfway decent -right?"
Stewart says redshirt freshman Trai Mosley reminds him of Aaron Glenn, who he coached at Houston.
Daniel Davie told the Omaha World Herald that Stewart suggested Pro Bowler Antonio Cromartie for him.
“He’s compared everybody to somebody,” Davie said, “and that kind of makes guys feel good, want to learn and want to be out there. Whether we truly compare to those guys or not? We’ll see.”
If any coach in the Big Ten could pull off pro comparisions, it’s Stewart. From 2002 to 2009, he worked with the Houston Texans, San Diego Chargers, Philadelphia Eagles and Dallas Cowboys.