Wednesday Practice Report

The Wildcats put in two hours of work inside the Nicolet Football Center. Head coach Pat Fitzgerald was happy with the team's effort. Come to the sidelines inside the football center and get the latest with the Wildcats with this PW Practice Report.

Pat Fitzgerald was happy with the team's effort. "I thought it was a positive day, I thought the kids came focused, came to work, and had a good energy."

• Fitzgerald said that the team works gameplan in by phases each day. The team looked at a lot of gameplan for Rice. Fitzgerald said, "I thought the guys handled it really well."

Northwestern received some good news on the injury front. Jack Konopka was back at practice, and freshman running back Jordan Perkins was also in action. Konopka's status for Saturday's game will likely be clarified in the weekly injury report.

Dan Persa continued to practice—just as he did on Tuesday—and looked just as impressive. At this point, it would be a surprise if he did not play against Rice.

• Freshman cornerback Nick VanHoose gave the first-team defense a look of Rice backup quarterback Taylor McHargue (who rotates in), while Zack Oliver simulated starter Nick Fanuzzi.

• During 7-on-7 drills, Dan Persa was working in at quarterback while Colter was lined up as a receiver. Persa connected on a quick out route, as Colter made a quick, timely cut to make the reception. Colter has only been playing receiver for a few weeks now, but he has that sixth sense that receivers have with their quarterback. They are on the same page.

Jeremy Ebert has drawn great praise for his performance on Saturday's, but he continues to be a great practice player. He makes great plays in practice, and is always hustling on the field. Fitzgerald, again, made the claim that Ebert is an "All-Big Ten receiver."

• As expected, Jeravin Matthews has worked in as first-team cornerback across from Jordan Mabin.

• With every play, there were multiple defenders giving chase to the ball-carrier. The energy in practice is always noticeable.

• Practice ended with Ben Johnson dealing a punishing hit on Cermak Bland, who was running a route across the middle of the field.

The Wildcats will be back on the practice field on Thursday morning, as they continue to prepare for their Saturday matchup with Rice. Stay with PurpleWildcats.com for continued updates, stories, analysis, and more.


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