Two weeks out from the season opener, Nebraska is trying to navigate the injury bug.
While head coach Scott Frost said a lot of the team’s injuries have been minor, the Huskers haven’t been able to completely avoid long-term blows. He said wide receiver Decoldest Crawford will be out for “an extended period of time” due to a knee injury suffered in Nebraska’s most recent scrimmage.
“I felt terrible for him,” Frost said at Saturday’s press conference. “But he’ll come back strong.”
As far as less serious setbacks go, Turner Corcoran missed some time due to injury this fall and didn’t practice during the session open to media on Wednesday. However, Frost said the offensive lineman has participated the last two practices.
The status of Chris Hickman, who was in a boot during Wednesday’s practice, was not brought up during the press conference. However, Frost said the team hasn’t suffered any major injuries outside of Crawford, so that may be a positive sign.
The head coach also spoke on Gabe Ervin, a player who came back from a 2021 season-ending knee injury. The team gave the running back a rest day today because his knee was “flaring up” a bit, but Frost has been impressed with what he’s seen.
“Gabe’s made a great comeback, Gabe’s a better player than he was before he got hurt right now,” he said. “He looks bigger, faster. Hitting holes really hard.”
More news and notes
>> Nebraska will host its second scrimmage of fall camp on Sunday before taking a day off on Monday. Frost said the staff is still determining the format of the scrimmage but expect to make “a lot of decisions” after.
“We’ll have a pretty good idea of depth chart,” Frost said. “Not sure when we’ll release it but we’ll have a pretty good idea after tomorrow and then it’s about getting the team ready to fly overseas and play.”
Frost also mentioned that Nebraska will turn its attention to Northwestern and game prep when the team returns to practice on Tuesday.
>> Frost said Nebraska will travel all 110 players who participated in fall camp to Ireland. However, per Big Ten Conference rules, 74 Huskers will dress for the season opener against Northwestern.
>> Transfer defensive lineman Devin Drew arrived in Lincoln on Tuesday before going through an acclimation period through the week. While Frost hasn’t gotten the opportunity to see much from him yet, he’s eager to see what Drew is able to do with Nebraska this season.
“I really only got a chance to watch him one day because he had to go through acclimation,” Frost said. “He didn’t have pads on when we had pads on. Haven’t watched the tape from today yet but he does show up. He’s a twitchy athlete for being an inside guy. I think he’s going to add to what we have there and be in the mix.”
>> While there’s been plenty of talk about the running back position, Frost also gave some attention to the wide receivers on Saturday. He said Nebraska has one of the deepest groups of receivers that he’s had in his four seasons in Lincoln, mentioning Alante Brown, Oliver Martin, Ty Hahn, Wyatt Liewer, Brody Belt and Omar Manning as players who have continued to progress through fall camp.
>> When asked about the special teams situation—and specifically the kicker and punter situation—Frost was complimentary of where the group is right now after making a number of offseason changes. That includes Bill Busch taking on the role as Nebraska’s special teams coordinator.
“I feel great about kicker and punter right now,” Frost said. “Which puts a smile on my face to say. I think we’ve got several that can do it and have been doing really well in camp. Again, it’s different when the lights are on in a soccer stadium but what I’ve seen from them, we’ll be vastly improved. Having Bill Busch in that role where he can actually coach is making a difference too. Just having everybody on the same page and getting work at those things . . . It’s no secret that we needed to make a lot of improvement in the special teams area and hopefully we have.”