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Spring Practice (52 Viewers)

Kaladin

Professor of Aesthetics / Positive Boogeyman
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Yeah he might be the frontrunner and honestly should be. I'd be happy with a 1 2 punch of EJ and Dowdell
Will Ervin be here after spring?

Seems like EJ and Dowdell are the only possibilities, unless Johnson makes a comeback
 

vailhusker

Heisman Winner
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Tony White has big expectations for this Husker defense, sure.

But whatever progress was made in 2023, it's a new group that has to go do its own earning.

"I've said this from Day 1 and I'll say it until the end of the season: This group of guys, they haven't done anything," Nebraska's defensive coordinator said after Tuesday's practice, the fourth of 15 this spring. "Together, we have not done anything yet. So it's like building a building. It starts with the little things and making sure they know what to do, they know how to do it, and then reinforcing.

"Not only coach to player, but player to player."

Isaac Gifford. Ty Robinson. Mikai Gbayor. Javin Wright. Marques Buford Jr. A lot of ball has been played by them.

"They know what's up. So now we're trying to make them take hold of it, take leadership, and wherever they go on their fields, really bring that to life. That's the goal. We do. We want to be the No. 1 defense in the country but all that is (is) words until guys adopt it and they live it every day."

THE BENEFITS OF WORK ON THREE FIELDS​

With practice work happening on three fields at once, White stresses how you have to be on the same page as a defensive staff.
There might be another use besides the obvious of having all that activity going on.
"It gives the coaches a chance to put their spin on the defense," White said. "They're calling it, so it's really good training to be a coordinator as well for the coaches. And then for the players you really get a chance to see who knows what they're doing and who doesn't."
That's because the way the teams are situated right now, there might be a veteran who has taken on 1,000 snaps with a first-year guy who doesn't know what he's doing.
"So there's got to be some extra communication there. We're really keen on watching who can communicate the right way: who knows what they're supposed to be doing. But also coaches wise, why they're calling certain things and such. So it's good training for everybody."


MIXING IT UP​

Early in practices, there are stations where it's the combination of players who might be expected to be the 1s at this point.
But then there are other stations where everyone gets blended in – old and young, potential starters with maybe those a little further back in line. "Now you get a chance to see who's going to lead a group. So you're getting a good mix of both right now. It's just a matter of us being really consistent with making sure what the standard is. Because whether you're a first-year player or you've played 1,000 snaps, there's a standard that we've got to continue to set."


AS FOR THOSE INSIDE BACKERS?​

It's a good group, White thinks.
He particularly likes watching them when the regular units get broken up a bit and they're out of their comfort zone.
"You're having an older guy with a guy who doesn't necessarily know what he's doing. So now he's taking on dual roles. 'Hey, I have to execute ... I have to make a tight call. I have to know where the back is.' But now he's got to turn around and communicate with a guy he's not used to doing it with. So you're putting more pressure on them – rightfully so."
Good competition ongoing.
"With Mikai (Gbayor), Vincent Shavers is looking good. Javin (Wright) has really come on and started to be really physical. Love that. Dylan Rogers, giving him a chance to show what he can do. He's a big, fast, strong guy."



THOMPSON ADJUSTING TO NEW LOCALE​

White obviously has experience coaching Stefon Thompson at Syracuse.
"He knows what to do. For him, there was just a different standard from where he came from to now ... And so he's getting accustomed to it. The more he's around the more he sees, the more he's on the grass and the more you can see the playmaker in him. So now we just got to mirror it up with him and make sure he understands the way he has to do things here."


WHITE LIKES THE CLOSENESS OF TERRANCE KNIGHTON'S D-LINE ROOM​

He also likes the versatility the personnel gives him as a coach.
"Not only do they know what they're doing, but they can plug into other spots. I think it really, really helps in terms of matchups. Putting guys over guys where you're saying, 'I know this guy can beat this guy.' It's an experiment now, though. You have the talent there and they know what to do but every day is like gameday around here when we're practicing. It's that intense. It's that physical. The standard is not what it was last year so guys are moving around and we got to watch the tape to give them justice on how they're doing."

NASHING IT UP​

Nash Hutmacher jumped right from wrestling season into wanting to take on individual drills the first week of spring practice. White likes how the veteran takes younger guys to the side after drills to work things through with them.
It a mindset and personality Hutmacher brings to the meeting rooms that the coach obviously appreciates. "When he walks onto the floor, you just do that much better. He's just a guy that you just want to work for. Him being in great shape. He jokes around that he's a pass rusher now and all his craziness. But he's just Bear, man. He's low maintenance. He's blue collar. He wants to get better and he wants to lead."


CORNER OPTIONS​

Besides Tommi Hill, a lot of guys are getting work there.
Blye Hill, Malcolm Hartzog, Ethan Nation, Mario Buford and Jeremiah Charles are among the names. White didn't want to put anyone above another at this point.
"It's not so much what position they play, it's what they can do. So whatever the combination of five best defensive backs are, then we'll put those guys on the field and figure it out."

THE CHANGE IN TOMMI​

A year ago when spring ball started Tommi Hill wasn't at the first practice.
Now he's one of the more high-profile names on this team heading through this spring.
"He's the perfect example of the standard being changed. You go from where he was to where he ended. So now there's a different expectation of him, right? We got him for not running to the ball as well as he could. Now last year that might have been OK. But this year it's totally different. Because he set the bar. He showed what he can do. And so if you want to be one of the best DBs in the country, then we're going to hold you to the standard, period.
"So when you're not doing it you're going to get barked at." In regards to that standard, "Everyday you live up to it or you don't. But he's doing well."


THEY COME IN ALL SIZES​

There's the more diminutive Ethan Nation and the longer Blye Hill working at corner, for example.
"'Twins.' Have you seen the movie 'Twins?' Arnold Schwarzenegger, Danny Devito? It's like that," White cracked.
He pointed out Evan Cooper does a good job just putting them in different positions to see where they excel. "With Blye, he's a guy who has all the talent there is. He is all of 6-3, 6-4. He's got movement skills. Doing things, getting used to the way things are done here. But Coop has done a great job working with him as well as all the DBs and really messing around with playing him to the boundary, playing him to the field. Sometimes just left and right. Moving guys around him. Seeing what he can.
"That's what the spring is. Seeing what these guys can do. Turning them loose and then saying, 'You fit best here.'"

 

Huskerbuck85

Wide Receiver
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Walk on, though I've heard has looked good, still don't see any carries headed his until Gabe and Rahmir get hurt for season by game 3.
Why don’t you see that? Are you in the coaching circle, have inside access and talent evaluation skills or is this just speculation bc he does not have a scholarship?
 

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