Jacksonville, Fla. --- The Nebraska football team made the trek to Florida on Friday, leaving Lincoln following a morning workout at the Hawks Championship Center. The Huskers went through a typical Monday workout and according to Associate Head Coach Barney Cotton, NU fared well in the continued preparation for the tough Clemson squad it will face in the Gator Bowl on Jan. 1.
“It was good. We went a little longer than what we’d have for a normal Monday practice of a normal week,” Cotton said. “We were out there in helmets and shorts and the guys ran around well. There was a lot of retention. We did some good against good in the running game and 7-on-7 period, and then we spent about half of practice working on Clemson. (Saturday) will be a little good vs. good and 80 percent will be against Clemson.”
Cotton said the Huskers will face a difficult matchup in the Tigers, who feature one of the Atlantic Coast Conference’s best defenses.
“It’s a very athletic football team,” Cotton said. “I spend most of my time looking at defense and they have what you would typically expect out of a highly ranked ACC defense. They are big and physical inside, have linebackers that can run, safeties that patrol center field and speed on the edges. We have a tough test offensively facing that defensive front and that entire defense. And offensively, they have an awful lot of skill led by those two running backs and I know (our defensive coaches) they don’t have to spend a lot of time on that side of the ball figuring out you have to stop the run first and I’m sure that will be our game plan.”
Cotton said the Huskers will continue with a normal practice schedule despite missing Head Coach Bo Pelini and Defensive Coordinator Carl Pelini, who left following Friday’s workout to return to Ohio. Bo and Carl Pelini will attend their father, Anthony’s, funeral on Saturday and then rejoin the Huskers before Sunday’s workout.
Nebraska will practice Saturday through Wednesday at the University of North Florida. The Huskers and Tigers will kick off at Noon Central on CBS on New Year’s Day.