Huskers.com has quotes from the weekly press conference about the Kansas game, and the upcoming game with Iowa State. I've picked out a few for comment:
From Head Coach Bill Callahan
"We're well underway with our preparations for the upcoming game against Iowa State. We're looking forward to the challenge. (Iowa State) is a good football team on tape. We watched them execute in all their areas of play, and this is a good football team and we're excited and eager about the challenge."
Here's what Bill had to say in his opening statement about Kansas:
"We just started our preparation yesterday on Kansas. They're a fine team, excellent in all categories. They present quite a challenge for our football team, one we're excited about."
Whoa, talk about dogging Iowa State. They're a good team on tape? Is that some kind of "she's nice" statement, or what? You can bet that McCarney will be using that as bulletin board material.
Okay, so this stuff is like listening to a politician, isn't it? We're going to see the same relative opening statement each week about an upcoming opponent. Swap a few adjectives - good, brilliant, superior, fantastic, awesome, magnificent, broiler-sized, pea-headed, or tubular,dude!
On the intent to change the defensive game plan for Iowa State
"It all depends on the game plan. I usually sit down with (defensive coordinator Kevin) Cosgrove on Wednesday nights, and just listen to him talk about how we're going to defend Iowa State.
Here's how we're going to defend Iowa State:
Crush the life out of that Brett Meyer guy.
That Blythe kid, break his legs in the first quarter.
Just for measure, mash that Stevie Nicks guy into the ground. Tackle him, then lay on him all the time.
Wait, there's more to that one:
He really did say "keys of victory". I'm guessing they go something like:
Score a lot, say, in the 30's.
Keep the other team from scoring, say, 30 points.
Get to overtime.
"It's a big game no question. It's a game where both teams have tremendous pride. Knowing (Head Coach Dan McCarney) Mac and knowing his background, having coached with him for a number of years at Wisconsin, I know exactly how fired up they'll be and what they'll be saying in the meetings, and how he'll get his guys fired up.
Translation: Mac is Irish. If he ain't drinkin', he'll be swearing more than usual. He'll be talking about how Nebraska didn't even give most of the Nebraska boys on Iowa State's team a second glance and how much they need to make them pay for that. For overlooking them. For making them feel inferior. For that raising-hogs smell they have to endure every day in Iowa. Yeah, that kind of stuff, man!
His face always looks like this. Really.
Unless it looks like this, and that ain't good.
Okay, enough abusing Bill Callahan. It's too easy, isn't it, but he's so gooey when he speaks. Maybe after he's done coaching Nebraska he can run for public office.
From Defensive Coordinator Kevin Cosgrove
On the decision to play the base defense against playing the nickel defense
"We're developing guys. I'm not going to take Stew Bradley off the field. I need speed rushers on the field. We've been doing that. We're just trying to get the best 11 on the field all the time. We may see nickel this week. I don't know."
I like this answer, really, no sarcasm intended. He says a lot here, like - we have better linebackers than cornerbacks. There's nothing wrong with that. And we do need speed rushers on the field because we're not coming anywhere close to the sacks we had last year.
The idea that we're in our third year with these coaches and they're still "developing guys"? Does that ever end? Besides we all like Stewart Bradley, don't we?
From Quarterback Zac Taylor
On whether or not Nebraska will have to score 50 points to beat Iowa State
"We're going to try and score 50 points. Our defense will be ready for them and they've got a great offense so it's going to be a tough task, but we're going to try and score as many points as we can."
Some wonderful sarcasm implied here, but after watching the conservative defense give up a boatload of yards against Kansas, what would you ask? Iowa State's offense has struggled somewhat throughout the season, but they match up very well against Nebraska, with a potentially strong passing game against a weak secondary.
I can't imagine the reaction by Nebraska fans should we give up around 40 points plus to Iowa State. Oh, wait. I can. It'll be like my reaction last week, re-printed here for the children:
What the #)$(#)(#$)#& was that !@!@((#0'in play? Where's the #$#)$(#)!raisinbran pass rush? I'd like to take a Tickle Me Elmo and @#(@#&@ up 8#$#$(&@#$# his #$#.
"Watching him on film, he gets open. Guys are afraid to cover him. Guys are scared to death that he's going to run by them. He needs to get more confident. He shows big in games. He hasn't dropped a pass I've thrown to him in a game yet, and he makes big plays in the back of the end zone. He's definitely becoming more and more of a threat every game, and you'll continue to see a lot of him. He's a great player already, and once he starts to feel more and more comfortable in our system he's going to make big plays. He's going to be a threat as the season goes on."
No doubt Nebraska fans are waiting to see Purify explode, and Iowa State is as good a game for it to happen. Purify is a big guy, comparable to ISU's Todd Blythe. Let's see.... Maurice Purify is to Todd Blythe what Franz Hardy is to Austin Flynn. I wonder if Franz Hardy's girlfriend is this hot, though?
From Linebacker Stewart Bradley
On the confidence of the Nebraska defense
"I think, if you can have a game where you pretty much play horribly and you still win, that's good. You're always going to have a game where you don't play your best and we're happy we survived it. Everything is improvable. A lot of it (the performance against Kansas) was mental mistakes and things that are easily correctable, so we're definitely still confident."
Refreshing honesty - at last someone says it. I love Stewart Bradley. He can play more. I hope we don't see any Nickel this weekend. Unless we need it, of course.
On having fewer quarterback sacks this season than last year at this point
"It hurts when you play a screen-and-draw team, like this week, or an option team. I think, when we really unleash the defensive line and let them go, they've been pretty productive. We have a talented group in that front four and they can generate sacks. I'm not worried about it at all."
Here's hoping this weekend we see Brett Meyer running for his life on a consistent basis. That has to be one of the "keys to victory" doesn't it? Crush the life out of the opposing quarterback before he can wing the ball in the air to a really tall guy that's being defended by short guys?