Nebraska head coach Bo Pelini took the stand in Chicago today, and addressed the media.
*Pelini said the things his team needs to work one is execution and fundamentals, and that they need to get better at that as a whole.
*When asked why former redshirt freshman linebacker Thomas Brown was dismissed from the team, Pelini said it was
for violation of team rules, and he would not go into details. Pelini did wish Brown luck at his next school.
*When asked what advice he would give Rutgers and Maryland for joining the Big 10, Pelini said everyone is going to transition in their own way. He credited the coaches in the Big 10 Conference for being so welcoming, and for helping him adjust. He said the biggest thing is for the players coming into a new Conference, and playing in stadiums they had never played in before.
*As for the new targetting rule, Pelini said he addressed his team in the spring about the rule changes. He said that the coaching staff had picked out certain examples that the NCAA had provided.The coaching staff had pointed out certain areas where some guys may be ejected from games. He went on to say his team is prepared. He did add that he and his coaching staff are all for protecting players, but he does disagree with some instances of the new rule.
*There was a point where it seemed like the media was afraid to ask Bo some questions. The mediator had to repeat “The floor is open for questions,” three times.
*Pelini said he really likes the offense. He likes having a 4 year starter at quarterback, in Taylor Martinez. He added that Martinez has some really dynamic weapons around him. Pelini said he believes this is the best offensive line he’s had since arriving in Lincoln. He did state that there are some young guys that are going to have to step up, but did not mention names. Pelini closed the question with, “I wouldn’t trade our offense for anybody’s. I really like what we are doing.”
*Pelini was unaware that the next 5 years, Nebraska’s first Conference opponent will be Illinois. He said he knew Nebraska played them first this year, and that’s all he cares about. He has a lot of respect for the Illinois program. He s played Illinois a lot in his playing days in the Big 10, and it will be a big challenge right away in Big 10 play.
*As for moving to a 9 game Conference schedule, and the possibility of playing Ohio State, Michigan and other teams in the other Division more often Pelini said, It’s going to be a little different, and it does create some issues with nonconference ideas that were down the road. He thinks it will be a good thing in the end. Pelini said playing just 3 out of conference games changes the dynamics.
*When asked about the inexperience in his front seven on defense, Pelini said there are challenges in every situation. He said there will be some inexperience, but there are some experienced guys mixed in there, but there will be depth and great competition in the front seven. Pleini said there is a lot of athleticism in those positions, and he really likes the group and the way they finished the spring. He was excited about the incoming guys that his coaching staff is adding to the mix. Despite being younger, he said the group will be more multiple then ever before.
*The last question was about Taylor Martinez’s development from last season to this season. Pelini was asked if he was comfortable with Martinez, or any other player traveling to be coached by someone not in his coaching staff. Pelini responded by saying Taylor’s main coach is coach (Tim) Beck. He said Martinez does have a coach in California (Steve Calhoun) he works with, but he is on campus most of the year. He did state that it is nice to have some reinforcement with some other guys not on the staff. He did say Martinez has made great strides, and he thinks there is still a lot of room for improvement. Pelini said that Martinez even improved more in the spring. He said for Taylor to get even better not only does he have to get better with his mechanics but with his decision making, and thinks that Martinez has made huge strides in all areas.
By Jimmie Allen
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