-- The Nebraska football team worked out in full pads for a little over two hours on Wednesday inside the Hawks Championship Center.
After practice concluded, both offensive coordinator Troy Walters and defensive coordinator Erik Chinander addressed the media to talk about their group’s preparations for Iowa.
Walters went first and talked about the similarities between Iowa’s defense and what the Huskers faced last week against Michigan State.
"They're (Iowa) very similar, in fact, we know they're ranked higher,” Walters said. “They're very stout up front. They have 6-7, 6-6, 6-7 defensive linemen. They're aggressive, active. They create pressure, they really want to create pressure with four guys and then on the back end they're very sound. So they don't do a lot but what they do they do well. They play together.
“The one thing that impresses me about their defense is they know what the opposing offense is trying to do. They really study your plays, your run game, they're communicating well so we’ve got our work cut out for us, but the Michigan State game really prepared us for this game.”
Walters also talked about the challenges of having a shorter week of preparation.
"We lose a day, so any day you can have to go over some things and fine tune some stuff it helps but I'm excited,” he said. “I like shorter weeks because you get to play sooner, and our guys are at a point on offense where we know what we're doing. We know the plays, we know the system and so we're fired up. We've had a good week of practice so far, tomorrow will be more of a walk through and make sure our bodies are right to go play a good game against Iowa."
Following Walters, Chinander addressed the media and commented on if this game means a lot to him being an Iowa grad and former Hawkeye.
"It'll be good to go back to that stadium, and I’ve got a lot of friends and family coming wearing red to the game so that will be good,” Chinander said. “This is an important game for our team, it's really important to finish strong, really important for the defense to play well this game to get some momentum going into spring ball and recruiting."
"You know back when we (Coach Frost and himself) were at Oregon and places like that it was fun to go back and forth alumni, alumni. You know I tell the kids all the time, you’ve got great stuff here, the facilities are unbelievable, the training table and the academics. My favorite place in the whole building, the whole complex is when we walk out of that gate and it says "I Play For Nebraska." I coach at Nebraska, I get to coach at Nebraska and there's no doubt about it, I grew up in Iowa but home is where the heart is and my home is in Lincoln, my heart is in Lincoln."
Chinander also commented on if he enjoys the shorter weeks.
"No, I hate the short weeks because I love practice,” Chinander said. “The guys love the games, I like the games too, but the Saturdays are for the boys, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, those are my days. So when we miss a day I don't like that very much. I know it’s good to get a Friday night game or a Friday game after Thanksgiving and TV and all that stuff but I like to practice so I do not like these short weeks.”
Chinander lastly talked about what concerns him facing Iowa's offense.
"Obviously they're very good up front,” Chinander said. “The offensive line does a good job of really knowing what their assignments are and executing, and then the tight ends cause you some problems. They’ve got a couple two or three guys they can put in there, they all block really well, and they can all run routes really well so. They cause some problems in the run game. If you're going to try and cover those guys and then if you try to load up the box and stop the run game they're going to beat you in the pass. You have to have a good plan to take those tight ends away."
Nebraska will continue preparations for Friday’s game against Iowa tomorrow. Kickoff between the Huskers and Hawkeyes is set for 11 a.m. on Friday