Nebraska Football
Weekly Press Conference
Memorial Stadium
Pre-Purdue
Monday, Oct. 7, 2013

Junior I-Back Ameer Abdullah
On being named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week
“Like I said a couple days ago, I tip my hat to the guys blocking in front of me. It’s good to bring home Big Ten Player of the Week, but none of that would have been possible without the O-line, fullbacks and receivers busting their butts on the perimeter.”

On perimeter blocking
“You feel like you owe it to them after you see how hard they work on all the big runs with them blocking down field. I know they take pride on that and they have a chart where they track their blocks. When they take pride in that, we feel like we own them and it’s a partnership in a sense.”

On the rationale for the rotation of running backs
“Coach (Ron) Brown usually tries to put whoever in who he feels like fits the situation the best. If it’s short yardage maybe me and Imani (Cross) and if it’s Y-Sweep Terrell (Newby) has excellent speed and good quick vision. Imani pretty much dominates the goal line situations.”

On how it is to get in a groove with the running back rotations
“Not necessarily. I feel like it doesn’t take much for our backs to get into a groove. We’ve got a pretty good back field. For any situation that we are in, we have to make plays so you can’t blame that on not being in a groove.”

On the benefits of having five home games and going on the road now
“It’s going to be different especially for our young guys since we have a couple young guys playing. Home games have really benefitted us because playing in front of your home fans makes you feel really comfortable. We can’t treat it any different, you just need to go out there and treat it like you are playing at home.”

On how to become more patient
“Watching film. Understanding structure. Every team lines us differently. Illinois did a couple things I had never seen. The O-line did a good job of picking up, much better than I did. That’s something I need to get better at is knowing my opponent.”

On how he creates space like Barry Sanders, as Coach Pelini said
“Day-in and day-out just working on your craft. You can always get better at something. You should never leave the field without working on an element of your game that you feel like you need to improve. Never leave the field without working on something, whether it’s catching a ball that’s behind you or keeping your balance or working on your off hand.”

On who he models his game after
“Actually, my favorite back is Warrick Dunn. I like him a lot. I can’t necessarily model it because we have two different styles but I try to model my game after him in great detail. I really do like his game. He made great decisions and was very patient. I felt like he was the total package, a tough runner who wasn’t the biggest guy. He could make quick decisions to juke the defender and get in space; he could do it all.”

On teaching what he has learned to the younger guys
“It comes with experience. Playing in a fair amount of football games here now, I realized that making a quick decision is better than waiting for the big play all the time. It’s different between being patient and too patient. If you are waiting for everything to be perfect then you are never going to excel. I feel like making quick and decisive decisions will allow you to make positive yardage. Coach (Tim) Beck always tells us if we are able to get four yards per play we are moving in the right direction and as an offense that’s one of our goals.”