Following the events of yesterday, the goal today was to get back on track, not just mentally, but physically. With one more game yet to play, preparations are in hand, short staffed or not. Today's "practice" was not practice at all, rather more physical exercises and measures to keep both the mind and the body read. "Virtually no footballs were involved." Solich stated about today's workouts. "It was simply to remain in condition."
Condition is important as with one game to play, being out of shape isn't a scenario anyone wants to entertain. The biggest concern about that issue would logically be with the biggest players on the field as those are the most likely to see weight gains during this period of inactivity. "Your weight can become an issue, especially for down linemen." Solich stated. "If they are not careful and not conditioning right, they can put on quite a bit of weight here leading up to the bowl game and not be able to perform well."
Performing is just what NU is planning on doing, but you knew that coach Solich could not escape the expected deluge of questions stemming from yesterday's moves. With all the changes taking place, Solich stepping down as offensive coordinator seems to have taken a back seat to some, but not to all. One big question around Husker land is that with a new coordinator is there a possibility of a new philosophy altogether. "You certainly consider a coach that has some style of power running involved." Solich stated. "It doesn't necessarily have to be a two-back or three-back set, but it has to have some type of running game that they are trying to establish and then, can build off of that."
"If you look at some of the teams that are out there that are very good running football teams, Colorado for instance really doesn't have an option attack other than a down the line option which almost every team in football has now."
Graduate Assistant Tim Albin has surfaced as one of those candidates for the offensive coordinator position. He joins other in-house candidates like Turner Gill and Ron Brown as possibles to succeed coach Solich for the job. Solich stated that Albin is viable for the position and would be considered. "He's had a great time here at Nebraska in terms of what he has done and accomplished on the field." Solich stated. "He's contributed very well in our meetings and in games very well."
Coach Solich wouldn't go into names as other candidates not in-house for any job on the Nebraska staff, but reiterated from yesterday's statements that the lists are being evaluated.
Though the greatest extent of the conversation today was on coaching changes and criteria behind appointing new coaches, coach Solich did have some comments as to the actual preparations for the bowl game coming up towards the end of this month. "Thursday, we will have some footballs involved in a limited practice and then do more conditioning." Solich stated. "Friday, full-padded practice, Saturday, full or half-padded practice and they will have tomorrow off."
The bowl that Nebraska will be in is still up in the air, but is projected as the Independence Bowl in Shreveport, Louisiana on Dec. 27th where they would most likely face the SEC #7 team, Ole Miss, led by brother to Peyton Manning, Eli Manning.
Stay tuned as we will have much more on all the coaches' comment relating to the coaching situation up later and throughout the week and more than likely, until this situation is resolved.
Steve Ryan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 402-730-5619