Lincoln, Neb. — The Nebraska football team practiced for approximately two hours on Tuesday afternoon in full pads, splitting time between the Hawks Championship Center and on the Ed and Joyanne Gass practice fields.
Defensive coordinator Bob Diaco spoke to the media after practice about preparing for a Purdue team which has used two quarterbacks extensively this season. Both Elijah Sindelar and David Blough have played in all seven games for the Boilermakers, and the pair have combined for over 1,650 passing yards and 14 touchdowns.
“The two quarterback system doesn’t seem to change the play selection” Diaco said. “The way they operate with personnel, the way they operate with formation and the way they operate play selection. I don’t think they alter too much based on one person or the next. Tactically, there is not much of a difference.”
Coach Diaco addressed how the Huskers used the bye week to focus on fundamentals, and getting reps for some of the reserves.
“We focused on our fundamentals. We focused on a lot of deep player depth. Working down from the next man in to the next, next man in. A lot of guys participated, and we did a lot of really strong individual work” Diaco said.
Diaco talked about how players such as Mick Stoltenberg and Dicaprio Bootle are making significant strides, as they are getting more accustomed to the defense and their roles.
“This isn’t add powder to water and shake,” Diaco said. “It’s a holistic, all-encompassing all-consuming process to create a great defense. It takes time. Mick Stoltenberg is a great example. He is physically capable to do all the work at a very high level. The gap he has is our new defense so he’s new to the defense and that gap is shrinking. The gap I’m talking about is his play and dynamic production. That gap is shrinking with participation and time. You take Dicaprio Bootle. He’s big enough, fast enough and courageous. His gap is that he is new to playing college football. He possess all of the tangible and intangible traits and he’s invested and passionate. I can’t say enough about both of those guys.”
“That’s just two quick examples of reality which closes the gap with time participated in the system. The other one is a brand-new player in the system. There is no doubt we are going to create a great defense. There is no doubt that we are going to create the best defense in the country. It is going to take time as these gaps are eliminated for every player. These player are good enough to do just that. We know them [the gaps], and we are closing and eliminating them. With each one that closes and minimizes, we’ll get better”
The Huskers will continue preparation for Purdue on Wednesday. Kickoff on Saturday is set for 6:30 p.m.