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Huskers Conclude Final Practice Before Holiday Break
Alfonzo Dennard and the Huskers will break for five days before departing for Orlando on Dec. 26.
Photo Courtesy BreAnna Haessler/NU Media Relations
Courtesy: NU Media Relations
12/20/2011
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The Nebraska football team hit the practice field on Tuesday for their final workout before a five-day break for the holidays. The Huskers practiced for a little over 90 minutes inside the Hawks Championships Center helmets in shoulder pads as they continued preparations for their upcoming match up against South Carolina in the Capital One Bowl on Jan. 2.

Head Coach Bo Pelini spoke to the media following Tuesday’s practice and talked about the upcoming break his players get to enjoy before leaving for Orlando on Dec. 26.

“We gave them some workouts and they’ll be back on Christmas day,” Pelini said. “I said be careful and enjoy your family, enjoy your time off. Make sure you get your workouts in that we asked them to do and come back with the right mindset and be ready to go.”

South Carolina features one of the top wide receivers in the country in Alshon Jeffery, and will be matched up on Nebraska All-Big Ten corner back Alfonzo Dennard for much of the game. Although Dennard was hampered by injury earlier in the season, Pelini says Dennard is one of the top corners in the country, and probably didn’t receive all of the recognition he deserves throughout the season.

“I don’t think he’s gotten quite as much (recognition) as I think he probably deserves,” Pelini said. “I find it hard to find a better corner in the United States than Alfonzo. I think he’ll get his due come the NFL draft because people watch him play and see the type of player he is. He’s got some recognition. He was Defensive Back-of-the-Year in the Big Ten. He’s gotten some accolades, but like I said, I think he’s a first-team All-American, but I don’t do the voting. I think he’s a tremendous football player. He’s been a great player and great leader for this program.”

Pelini also touched on the status of several Huskers for the bowl game. Pelini said the he will make a decision on senior center Mike Caputo soon, and noted that he did practice today. Pelini also said sophomore defensive end Eric Martin will play in the game.

On the injury front, Pelini said he expects guard Andrew Rodriguez to be available to play in the bowl game, while junior tight end Ben Cotton will continue to be evaluated as he progresses through his rehab from a shoulder injury.

“He’s (Cotton) ahead of schedule and we think that we’ll get him practicing down there as long as he keeps progressing in the rehab like he has the last few days, and see where he is from there,” Pelini said.

Nebraska and South Carolina will kick off from the Citrus Bowl on Jan. 2 at Noon (CT). The game can be seen nationally on ESPN. Check back to Huskers.com for continued coverage of the Nebraska football team.

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