The Huskies have concluded on-campus preparations for this week and fly to Nebraska this afternoon.
Today coach Steve Sarkisian gave this overview of the week's work:
"I thought our players responded to some of the challenges that we posed them for us to get better. And I thought they’ve executed well. This is an interesting week: Playing an option football team, defensively there are a lot of assignments and different things you have to go through. So it’s mentally challenging there. And offensively it’s challenging mentally going up against this defense because they pose so many different threats, not only in their coverage but in their pressure and then what they do up front."
Sarkisian said 76 players will travel. And he gave this health update:
"Taz (Stevenson) was really sore today. It’s not as bad as we maybe initially thought, but it’s really sore. I’d bet he’s doubtful. And Nate (Fellner) won’t be able to go. … Semisi (Tokolahi) is going to play. … (Talia Chriton) is a little banged up, but we’re doing something up front: We’re trying to get Everrette (Thompson) on the outside to give us a little more length. It’s kind of minimized Talia’s reps a little bit."
He expanded on that last part a little bit:
"It’s one of the beauties of having the depth that we have on the defensive line that we can move guys around. Everrette is unique in that fact that he can play inside and outside. If you remember in training camp, we did a lot of that. There were certain weeks he was inside and some weeks he was outside to get him those reps. We’re taking advantage of it this week."
Finally, why are the Huskies traveling today?
"The reason we’re going today is we're going two time zones," Sark said. "And then the kickoff time for the ball game. If we left tomorrow we’d have to get out guys up first thing in the morning, practice and fly to get there on time to do our walk-through at the stadium at 5 o’clock. So it would be a really long day for our kids. So we’re just trying to maximize their sleep time because we’re kicking off really 12:30 our time (2:30 Central), so we want to make sure we’re getting enough rest – especially tonight. Tonight’s the most important night to get your sleep."