Players go one-on-one: Spring practice Day 4

.Prior to spring practice, the emphasis was on being more physical. During the last practice, Nebraska illustrated that with the now famous "Oklahoma" drill. Today, they stepped it up even more, coaches hand-picking players for one-on-one drills. So, as they kids say, "it was on".

Today was a day that if you were an individual player, you wanted your number to be called. It was a chance for you to take on a player of the coaches' choosing. They choose you, then another and you get down in three-point stance and when someone says ‘go', you try to take the other off their feet.


For any football player, it's an opportunity, as it is for the coaches, but they find the fun in it as well. "It was good," defensive coordinator Kevin Cosgrove said. "The Oklahoma drill the other day, I thought was outstanding and you're putting them one-on-one in front of the whole team."


"You don't want to get beat in front of everyone else."


Cosgrove himself doesn't want to get beat as well, his unit's pride as much on the line as those on the other side. To that end, Cosgrove was pleased with the results. "You saw them (the offense) running the "gassers"," he said. "So, it was good."


That's sometimes considered a rarity, the offense getting beat this early. Logically, one would think that the defense has all the advantages right now. Even this early, though, Cosgrove said that this offense isn't anything to take lightly. "With all the motions and shifts, there's a lot of things you have to have tied down," Cosgrove said of preparing to face Callahan's West Coast. "Our offense creates a lot of problems with all of the movements and the shifts."


"That's why we are trying to move a little slow."


Prior to the spring, head coach, Bill Callahan had said that the defense would be limited in the amount of "pressures" it had at its disposal, simplifying the packages, so that the players could basically learn from the ground up. Cosgrove said that they had a chance to add some of those today. "Except for today, we have stayed basically one coverage and one six-man pressure, which is a zero coverage, so there wasn't a lot they had to do," he said.


"Today, we threw in a couple of different coverages today and we had a few busts in there, but there won't be anything new added the next practice, so we'll tie down what we did today and in the next practice."


The quarterback race continues to motor along, the battle for the top spot seemingly between Joe Dailey and Zac Taylor. Quarterback coach, Jay Norvell said that by the end of spring, he was hoping to have a solid top three and to that end, the race appears tighter between Joe Ganz and Beau Davis.


Nebraska will resume practice on Wednesday as they continue preparations for the spring game on April 16th.




Offensive lineman Lydon Murtha practiced today, his reps increasing as the practices continue. Offensive line coach, Dennis Wagner said that his percentages will increase throughout the spring, but there is no rush to bring him back all the way if he's not ready.

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