Coach Scott Frost thinks the Huskers “rallied well” in practice following a 21-13 loss to Northwestern, but that doesn’t mean there weren’t some additional consequences added to the week.
“If anybody got a penalty this week, they had to immediately leave the practice field and run a lap around the field,” Frost said on his Thursday Sports Nightly appearance. “We just added a little more consequence to some of those simple mistakes to make sure guys focus in even more and try to lock in that much more.”
Eliminating the small mistakes was a major focus for Nebraska post-Northwestern. While the defense had a pretty good game penalty-wise against Northwestern, the offense was a different story. The offense, for example, had four penalties on the first three drives. Those ended up being drive killers too.
With Penn State coming to town, the Huskers don’t want “fixable penalties” to cost the team a chance at a win.
“That was our big focus all last week was we can have fun and be out there on the field but when it’s time to do my job, I need to lock in and do my job so we can eliminate some of the fixable penalties that have been costing us a little bit,” Frost said.
The Huskers felt like they could have—and should have—won the game against the Wildcats. Frost feels his team is close to getting that much-needed win, and Nebraska will get that chance against Penn State on Saturday. As long as those small things don’t add up, of course.
“I think the team is feeling like I am, just absolutely devastated that we didn’t win that one, but also really encouraged by the progress,” Frost said. “The kids know that it’s inevitable that it’s going to show up on the scoreboard and the win column sooner or later.”
More news and notes:
>> Could Nebraska fans see Wan’Dale in the backfield against Penn State?
“I’d say that’s very possible,” Frost said. “We’ve had a lot of things designed for Wan’Dale and the ball hasn’t found him in the first couple weeks. We need to do a better job as coaches and we’re going to do whatever it takes to get him the rock.”
Frost also noted that Robinson was limited with a “foot sprain last week.”
>> No update on who is starting at quarterback, but we knew that after Thursday’s practice. He has seen improvement from both players over the week.
“I care about Adrian Martinez as much as anyone I’ve ever coached. Luke’s a special kid too,” Frost said. “Both of those guys are going to handle it well no matter what happens.”
If there is one thing that Martinez needs to improve upon, though?
“It’s just making those split-second decisions,” he said.
>> Frost expects senior Jack Stoll to return “soon” following an apparent knee injury that he suffered against Ohio State.
Overall though? Frost said he feels good about where the tight end position is right now.
“They haven’t been perfect, but Travis Vokolek was a huge addition to us,” Frost said. “He’s a big body that can do everything we ask a tight end to do, and is a dominant blocker. Austin Allen’s game has just continued to improve since I’ve been at Nebraska . . .
“That’s a position of strength for us and we feel good about those guys doing whatever we ask them to do.”
>> Should Luke Reimer have received a scholarship out of high school? Frost has questioned himself a bit on why he didn’t.
“Because it was an absolute no-brainer once he got to campus what we had in Luke,” Frost said. “And I’m glad people are getting the chance to see it.”
>> Maybe Nebraska fans will see Central Florida quarterback McKenzie Milton in Lincoln at some point. Frost said he’ll leave the door open on his staff for Milton to join it if he’s ever interested.
“McKenzie is a special guy to me,” Frost said. “He’s doing well, I think he’s practicing, from the last I talked to him. He wants to be a coach and we’ve talked . . . When he’s ready to be a coach, he’s going to come and help us at Nebraska, I think. Or he’ll certainly have the opportunity to if he wants to.
“He’s the type of guy you want around because of who he is and the energy he brings.”
Erin is the Deputy Editor and Digital Marketing Strategist for Hail Varsity. She has covered Nebraska athletics since 2012, which has included stops at Bleacher Report, Cox Media Group’s Land of 10, and even Hail Varsity (previously from 2012-2017). She has also been featured on the Big Ten Network, NET’s Big Red Wrap-Up, and a varsity of radio shows nationwide. When not covering the Huskers, Erin is probably at Chipotle.