Adrian Martinez will travel with the Huskers to Ann Arbor this season. After that, who knows yet?
“He’s further along,” head coach Scott Frost said of his freshman quarterback in what was a short availability Thursday. “It isn’t just is he ready to go, it’s is he ready to go mentally and physically to the point he can protect himself in the game and make sure he stays healthy? He’s really close, we’ve got to make a final decision.”
That decision will likely come on Saturday at some point before kickoff. Same as last week. The question for the staff right now isn’t really is he healthy enough to plant and throw an out-route while pushing off that leg? It’s more about when Michigan targets his knee, because they will, can it hold up? They’re going to take their time answering that question. Martinez has a bright future.
And Nebraska is definitely wary of the Michigan defense.
“[Defensive coordinator Don Brown]’s got good players to work with and they’ve got good scheme,” Frost said. “They take away just about everything easy that should be there and make you earn it. They’re going to play hard. I’m sure if we’re playing a young quarterback or a backup quarterback, they’re going to be coming over the walls on blitzes, so we have to be ready for that.”
Frost said backup quarterback Andrew Bunch, if he ends up playing, is going to be fine. “There was some good, there was some bad,” he said. Bunch, like everyone else on the team just needs to continue improving.
Other News and Notes
>> The Big Ten upped the travel roster limit this season from 70 to 74. Still, that means leaving some guys at home. Frost said there’s no challenge in that.
“We do the same thing at home games, take a certain number of people to the hotel so it won’t be any different,” he said.
>> What does Frost want to see from his special teams unit this week?
>> Are there any season-ending injuries for Frost to report?
>> Did Frost think Nebraska had a disappointing Thursday practice?
>> If it sounds like Frost was in a bad mood, that’s what it seemed like to gathered media. Maybe “bad mood,” isn’t the way to describe it. Maybe he’s just locked in. Maybe he’s tired of answering the same questions. There’s been a ton of culture questions for the head coach to answer over the last week.
There was a question Thursday about what he’s going to learn most from his team taking them on the road for the first time. He talked about culture.
“There’s so many little things that we have to make sure are right culturally,” he said. “I remember when I first got here, [Athletic Director] Bill Moos talked to me about being on a road trip at the end of last year and getting off the plane and not ever in his life seeing a plane with so much trash left on the plane.
“It sounds like it shouldn’t matter in the game, those things matter. When guys are attentive to do things right, little things are done right all the time, including in games. We have a lot of lessons to continue to teach them, I’m sure there are things that will come up on the road trip that we’ll continue to teach them, but those things take a while and it’s a process. We’ll fix those as they come up. I’m more worried about getting the team as ready as they can be to play this game.”
Maybe he’s tired of being asked about individual players.
“Listen, I’m not going to talk too much about individuals,” he said when asked about wideout Tyjon Lindsey. “He’s got a ways to go just like a lot of other guys. There’s got to be attention to detail, there’s got to be effort from a lot of guys. There’s got to be more desire to be perfect in practice from a lot of guys. We’re continuing to get that fixed but if you guys are waiting for me to talk about what’s wrong with a player, I’m never going to throw one guy under a bus.”
He was asked about safety Aaron Williams, too. Williams got a Blackshirt this week to become the eighth member of the defense to earn one. He said Williams has done well to prove himself after missing a large chunk of the offseason with injury.
He did say this on the Blackshirts, though: “These Blackshirts that are handed out, they’re not bought, they’re rented. It’s a week-to-week thing and they’ve got to continue earning it.”
Derek is a newbie on the Hail Varsity staff covering Husker athletics. In college, he was best known as ‘that guy from Twitter.’ He has covered a Sugar Bowl, a tennis national championship and almost everything in between (except an NCAA men’s basketball tournament game… *tears*). In his spare time, he can be found arguing with literally anyone about sports.