Nebraska Football
Weekly Press Conference
Monday, Nov. 11, 2013 (Memorial Stadium)
Pre-Michigan State

Having Ameer Abdullah on the field
“He’s a great back and I’m excited to have another year with him. He’s been a great leader for me and this team.”

On Abdullah’s Consistency
“He makes plays – a big-time player. He gives 100% all the time, both in practice and games. He a hard-nosed football player.”

On Michigan State’s defense
“They’re a tough team, one of the best defenses in the country. We have to respect them and take care of the football. We need to try to capitalize when we can. It’s gonna be a tough game.”

On not being intimidated
“I’ll treat this week like any other week. It doesn’t matter who our team goes up against. We treat every week like a big ball game.”

On Michigan State’s blitzing
“If you blitz, someone is going to be open. We just need to put our guys in the right position. We need to identify (the blitz), go out there and run our offense. Have our line in the right position to protect and our receivers in the right spots to make plays.”

On running the option
“Coach (Tim) Beck puts us in the right position to run the option. It comes down to instinct with me and Ameer (Abdullah). We just have to wait and have our defenders play us. You can’t really be taught the option certain ways, you have to go out and react.”

Does he feel like it is now his team
“We are all leaders. Me, Ron (Kellogg III), Taylor (Martinez), we are all leaders of the team. The team belongs to us and we are all captains when it comes to leading the team.”

His message at Michigan
“I went and told Jordan (Westerkamp) to keep his head up. Mistakes are made and it’s how we respond. When you’re at the Big House and something like that happens, they expect us to have our heads down. Told him our defense was gonna get a stop and we were going to march down the field and score.”

Who picked him up when he threw an interception late against Northwestern
“Our whole offense. They told me not to worry about it and be ready because we were going to get the ball back. Ron (Kellogg III) got the call and I told him to march us down the field.”

On his bound with the offensive line
“Everything starts with the offensive line. They put us in the right position. They put their bodies on the line for us and they fight to protect us. You have to respect them. They take a beating for 90 plays game, I take my hat off to those guys.”

How important is the Michigan State game
“It’s important, but we are going to treat it like any other game. We are going to prepare the right way and put our guys in the right position to win. They are one of the best defenses in the country, but they can be beat. When our offense is clicking, I don’t think there is anyone the country can stop us. We have some bumps and bruises on the offensive line, but we have young guys stepping up.”