The Nebraska football team continued spring practice on Friday afternoon with a 2 ˝-hour workout inside the Hawks Championship Center in half-pads.

 

The practice was well-attended as Friday also marked the start of the two-day Nebraska Spring Coaches Clinic. More than 800 coaches are on hand at the clinic which opened on Friday morning and will continue through Saturday afternoon’s Husker practice.

 

On Friday night, the clinic participants will get the opportunity to listen to a pair of NFL coaches. New Orleans Saints Head Coach Sean Payton will address the clinic to close the Friday session. Payton had the opportunity to talk with reporters following practice and was impressed by the Huskers.

 

“It was outstanding,” Payton said. “I was very impressed. This was one of the better college practices I’ve ever seen,” Payton said. “I couldn’t get over the tempo of practice. I told the players this, we start Monday with our off-season program and you get inspired when you watch a practice like this and you see things that can help you in regards to how you teach and how you maximize your time. I’ve known Bill (Callahan) long enough to really not be surprised by what I saw today. He is a great teacher and he obviously has a great group of coaches here working with these guys.”

 

Payton served on the same coaching staff as Callahan with the Philadelphia Eagles in 1997. Payton said his relationship with Callahan made attending the Nebraska Coaches Clinic a natural choice and he credits Callahan with helping him become a successful coach in the NFL.

 

He is one of the best I’ve been around,” Payton said of Callahan. “He taught me a ton at a young age. It was a foundation of learning football for me. Throughout your career you draw from a lot of people you are around and I was lucky enough at a young age to break into the league with someone like Bill. He is very disciplined, he is a tremendous worker, extremely intelligent, and knows exactly what he’s looking for. He’s very detail oriented. He can explain something very easily. Some guys just have a knack for teaching well.”

 

Payton also got a first-hand look at the new Tom and Nancy Osborne Athletic Complex and the Hawks Championship Center and he liked what he saw.

 

“It is as good of a facility as I have seen,” Payton said. “This facility here is something else. The technology is amazing and it is well-thought out as well. I’m jealous.”

 

The Friday night portion of the clinic will also include Indianapolis Colts assistant Gene Huey, who recently completed his 15th season in the organization. Huey, who tutors the Colts’ running backs, is this year’s Nebraska Legends Speaker, as he was on the Husker staff from 1977 to 1986. Friday evening’s activities will begin with chalk talks from each of the Nebraska assistant coaches.

 

The clinic continues on Saturday morning, beginning with a Fellowship of Christian Athletes Breakfast, with Tom Osborne as the speaker. Saturday morning’s agenda also includes featured speakers Frank Gansz, the former head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs and Juan Castillo, the offensive line coach of the Philadelphia Eagles.

 

Nebraska will complete its second week of spring practice on Saturday with an early afternoon practice.