Your Nebraska Cornhuskers are in week two of Fall Camp! They had a practice yesterday, today, and will tomorrow. But what makes today’s practice special is the media time after practice for some players and coaches!
Since it’s a Tuesday, DC Bob Diaco and members of the defensive side of the ball were made available. Here are the highlights of today’s media session.
A few notes from today's #Huskers practice. Linebackers coach Trent Bray says Tyrin Ferguson has made a push at "dog" or outside LB spot.— Brian Rosenthal (@GBRosenthal) August 8, 2017
The DOG Linebacker is usually the strong-side LB in the Diaco 3-4 system, That means that Bray & the staff must think that Tyrin Ferguson, who redshirted last season, is ready to go.
Bray also says linebackers Marcus Newby and Luke Gifford are both "playing at a high level." In particularly, said Gifford stepping up.— Brian Rosenthal (@GBRosenthal) August 8, 2017
Bray says Gifford getting hands on footballs everyday. "His intensity, focus and play-making ability is really showing right now.” #Huskers— Brian Rosenthal (@GBRosenthal) August 8, 2017
If the same Luke Gifford that's been terrorizing practices shows up for the season Nebraska might have an exciting defensive playmaker.— Mike Schaefer (@mikejschaefer) August 8, 2017
We’ve always known Marcus Newby as the more pass-rushing one, so this comment makes sense. Luke Gifford has come a long way with Trent Bray in 3 seasons. We have it from two sources, so you know it’s true!
John Parrella backs up Mike Riley's words on Ben Stille making push at defensive end. “Ben’s been flying around, getting better every day.”— Brian Rosenthal (@GBRosenthal) August 8, 2017
I have a hard time seeing Ben Stille playing every down, but if he can create some depth to help out, I think that’s his ceiling this season for Nebraska’s defense.
Khalil Davis eager for this D to go public. Thinks it can do many different things. "It's going to be pretty scary to see what we can do."— Brian Christopherson (@Husker247BC) August 8, 2017
Trust me, Mr. Davis, we all want to see it as well.
Scott Booker said it's too early to single out names for returning kickoffs/punts but said he's been pleased with punter Caleb Lightbourn.— Brian Rosenthal (@GBRosenthal) August 8, 2017
Booker, on Lightbourn: "He’s dedicated to craft and you see him growing every day. I don’t think he’s a finished product yet."— Brian Rosenthal (@GBRosenthal) August 8, 2017
I think Scott Booker’s biggest challenge, other than trying to protect Caleb Lightbourn, is to get Lightbourn to take a big Freshman to Sophomore leap. No one can hold last year on Caleb; he was forced to be the man after the Sam Foltz tragedy. That being said, it’s Caleb’s job now and he needs to be the guy who we thought he was when he signed with the Huskers.
DaiShon Neal on DE/LB Damian Jackson (Navy SEAL): "He's a real quiet guy. That's what makes him scary - you never know what he's thinking."— Evan Bland (@EvanBlandOWH) August 8, 2017
One of the best rules anyone can have in their lives is not to mess with the quiet ones. You simply don’t do it. Related, Nebraska NEEDS this guy on the field on Special Teams. A Navy SEAL won’t allow a punt to get taken back for a TD.
And now we’ve reached the Diaco part of the show:
Bob Diaco on tackling in space. pic.twitter.com/XsBnhLXeUK— Michael Bruntz (@michaelbruntz) August 8, 2017
Two practice takeaways:— Mike Schaefer (@mikejschaefer) August 8, 2017
Long way from seeing how it will work, but multiple players, assistants praise Diaco for ease of 3-4 installation.
While I completely appreciate what Mike is saying here, there’s installation and then transition to ability to perform. You can install all the stuff you want, but if it doesn’t get applied on the field and used to win football games, did it work out?
Diaco clear in practice today that player evaluations will be "ongoing" regardless of role. Depth chart likely won't be static this year.— Evan Bland (@EvanBlandOWH) August 8, 2017
Again, interesting to see how Diaco treats that throughout the year. Playing the hotter hand may be in the best interest of Bob and getting through this year.
The Huskers keep practicing this week, where Danny Langsdorf & the offense will speak on Thursday. Then, after Saturday’s workout, Mike Riley will address the media.