The Nebraska football team practiced for approximately two hours on Wednesday inside the Hawks Championship Center.
Following practice, Offensive Coordinator Troy Walters met with the media and said the staff has been pleased with the effort of the team through the first three days of practice this week.
“Monday and Tuesday was excellent, maybe the best Mondays and Tuesdays we’ve had in our three years together. It was that good,” Walters said. “Today, guys were a little tired, and we didn’t build off what we established on Monday and Tuesday. But overall, the work was good and now it’s all mental. Now it’s getting your bodies right, getting refreshed mentally, making sure you know your assignments and getting ready to go on Saturday.”
Walters said the Colorado defense will provide a stiff test for his offense.
“They’re stout up front. They do a great job of rotating guys in and they play six, seven guys up front. They’re going to try and control the line of scrimmage, stop you from running the ball,” Walters said. “They’re athletic in the secondary. Their linebackers are active. But it all starts up front, they’re stout and they want to prevent you from running the ball.”
With the Buffaloes’ emphasis on stopping the running game, Walters said his unit has to be up for the challenge on Saturday, and that Nebraska must establish the run.
“They’ve got to be ready to go. They’ve got to be physical. They’ve got a challenge in front of them,” Walters said. “Going against our defense in fall camp has prepared them for whatever we’re going to see. They’re very similar to us [defensively], so scheme-wise our guys have seen what they’re going to do, so we should be ready to go.
“We’ve got to run the football. [With a] freshman quarterback, we can’t drop back 40, 50 times. With the amount of guys they play, the pressure they’re going to bring, the front three, four are very active, so we’ve got to be able to establish the run game. And then in the secondary, we’ve got to make plays. When the ball is thrown, we’ve got to make plays. They will load the box, they will give you 1-on-1 matchups on the outside, and we’ve got to be able to execute.”
Walters, who spent three seasons on Coach Mike MacIntyre’s Colorado staff, was asked if it was an advantage for his offense that the Buffaloes weren’t able to watch any film since Nebraska’s season-opening game with Akron was canceled last Saturday.
“It’s tough because they don’t know what we’re going to do,” Walters said. “They’re watching UCF film so personnel-wise, they don’t know who we’re going to play with, and scheme-wise we’ve changed some things up. They’re not sure what they’re going to see, so that’s an advantage.
“Now they have an advantage because they played and typically you get better from game one to game two. They have an advantage there, but it’s going to come down to whoever executes the best, whoever makes plays.
Regardless of any potential advantages, Walters feels good about where his unit is at heading into Saturday.
“I feel like we’ve gotten better from last week. We didn’t play a game, but I feel like we’ve gotten better in our preparation. I feel like we’re ready to go.”
Nebraska hosts Colorado on Saturday at 2:30 p.m. at Memorial Stadium.