The start of the 2020 football season has been a long time coming for Husker football. Offensive line coach Greg Austin was on Sports Nightly for an hour on Thursday to preview what Nebraska fans can expect from his position group. He ran through many topics about his unit for the upcoming season.
He started his appearance with how excited he is to get the season rolling.
“Really excited to be playing football,” Austin said. “When things get taken away from you, you don’t really understand the value and take things for granted. Me personally, one of the things I’ve been able to take inventory of is how much I love the game, being around the boys, coaching and developing. I’m just excited to be talking Husker football.”
Austin was very candid about the state of his offensive line room right now. He said that it’s without a doubt the deepest it’s been since he arrived at Nebraska.
“There is no doubt about that,” Austin said. “When I first got here we had about 10 guys in the room. We probably had five guys that play for us at a high level. When I say a high level, I mean competing in the Big Ten. I’m not talking about at the top of the Big Ten. Just go out there and compete. Now we are fortunate to have a lot of guys in the room. There is a lot of healthy competition that has gone on in the last six weeks even before we had pads on.”
In addition to being the offensive line, Austin has a new role this season. He was elevated to run game coordinator this offseason. Coach Scott Frost calls the plays but Frost will look to Austin in game situations about which runs the team should execute. Austin needs to be dialed in at all times so he can stay ready. Austin draws up every run play the Huskers have in preparation. He’s doing that on a computer now as he embraces technology.
Austin also has a veteran group coming back this season. Expectations are high for the group overall but one player seems to be standing above the rest. Senior tackle Brenden Jaimes has made 33 straight starts for Nebraska. Austin believes he has what it takes to be an impact player.
“Make no bones about it; I expect for him to be one of best, if not the best, tackles in the Big Ten,” Austin said.
“He knows that and that’s the expectation.”
Other news and notes:
>> Former 4-star true freshman offensive tackle Turner Corcoran has turned heads both on and off the field since arriving in Lincoln according to Austin. You may see the Kansas native on the field sooner than later.
“You’re going to see Turner Corcoran play sometime this year, maybe on Saturday, maybe thereafter,” Austin said. “But he’s a young guy with a lot of promise.”
>> Cam Jurgens is locked in as the starting center this season. The Huskers are continuing to develop depth behind him. The two players working to be his backup are Will Farniok and Trent Hixson. Austin counted Farniok as the leader for that spot currently.
>> Though he’s added responsibilities, Austin will remain on the sidelines during games. He likes being able to communicate directly with his guys. Austin also has other coaches like Frank Verducci in the box that he can trust to relay information from the birds-eye view.
Greg is the Recruiting Analyst for Hail Varsity and has covered Husker athletics since 2013. He has always had a passion for sports while growing up in the Chicago area. As he got older and had to hang up his cleats and sneakers, he realized his passion for sports went beyond just watching and attending games. He has covered many events from the Rose Bowl to championship boxing matches. If he’s not talking sports, he’s hovering over his grill. He is married to an amazing woman, Kim, and they have a dog that barks when Greg yells at the TV during games.