When it comes to Wisconsin, Nebraska’s offense knows what it’s up against. Offensive coordinator Troy Walters discussed it following Wednesday’s practice, sharing that it’s fairly simple when evaluating the Badgers.
“There are really no tricks about it,” Walters said. “They’re good. They play with high energy, [have] high-motor guys, so they can win their one-on-one matchups. They don’t necessarily have to blitz. They’ve got four or five guys that can rush the passer one-on-one and then when they do blitz, they mix it up. They’re kind of like our defense. They’re in and out of three-man front, four-man front, so it’s going to be important for our center to ID the front.
“But the thing about Wisconsin is that they play with their hair on fire and we’ve got to make sure we match their intensity or they’re going to get after us.”
That starts up front with the offensive line, as Walters noted with the center. The bye week, however, provided an opportunity for the Huskers to get much needed reps against one another which will hopefully help on Saturday.
“The first thing is they need to know what they’re doing,” Walters said. “They have to know what they’re doing. If there is any doubt, if there is any hesitation on what their assignment is they’re done. We’ve got to make sure they know what they’re doing. Once they know what they’re doing, they recognize what’s going on. We’ve had good practices. We’ve given them all the looks they’re going to face. Coach [Greg] Austin does a great job with them up front. The bye week, we went good-on-good so they went against our D-line so they have had a good week of practice so we’re ready to go.”
With that said, Nebraska’s offense also knows it won’t have a lot of snaps to work with. Wisconsin is known to dominate time of possession, which is something the Huskers have been discussing all week.
“We told the guys on Monday that each play, we’ve got to execute at a high level,” Walters said. “We went through the season and the number of snaps the opposing team got and it’s been 50-55 so we’re thinking 55-60 plays, so we’ve got to maximize those plays and we’ve got to be efficient. We can’t have turnovers, penalties or it’s going to be a long day.
“The guys understand the sense of urgency and how each play really does matter.”
More news and notes:
>> Wan’Dale Robinson wasn’t on the field for the Huskers in the final drive of the matchup with Purdue. Will he be back for Nebraska against Wisconsin this weekend? Walters was noncommittal about the freshman.
"We'll see. We'll see,” Walters said. “He's kind of banged up, but he's working to get back. We've got to play with what we have and we'll see game day what he can do."
>> Walters said Martinez is fully healthy ahead of Wisconsin. Quarterbacks coach Mario Verduzco also said Luke McCaffrey has returned to practice after a previous injury.