Huskers offense making strides through first five practices of fall camp

Posted at 7:35 PM, Aug 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-04 20:39:19-04

LINCOLN, Neb. (KMTV) — The Huskers held their 5th practice of fall camp in Lincoln on Wednesday. It was the media's first chance to watch a portion of practice. Offensive coaches and players spoke to reporters following the workout. One of the key battles in the preseason: running back. Gabe Ervin has impressed coaches so far as the true freshman has brought plenty of physicality.

"His pass blocking is really good," said NU offensive coordinator Matt Lubick about Ervin. "That's his strength. Pass blocking is a lot about technique but at the end of the day, it's about toughness. And that's what I've been really impressed with Gabe. Gabe's talented but he's very physically tough. He runs the ball hard between the tackles. He'll run through contact. And then he's not afraid to take on a linebacker coming off the edge. So that's a big quality we look for in all our players is physical and mental toughness."

Another interesting position battle: the wide receivers. Offensive Coordinator Matt Lubick says the depth at the position is night and day better between last year and this year. Montana transfer Samori Toure and Omar Manning expected to make a huge impact for the Huskers this fall.

"I know they spend a lot of time together off the field," Lubick said. "I know Omar's another guy that looks to Samori because of his experience and the way he's done things and that's been a huge deal."

Adrian Martinez has also stood out according to coaches and teammates. The junior quarterback has lost a few pounds from the previous season.

"But I also think he's put on some muscle," said Lubick. "He just looks faster. He's one of the better running quarterbacks in the country and I think he's actually gained a step."

"Adrian's looking amazing," said senior wide receiver Levi Falck. "You guys will see it. He's more confident in the pocket. He's moving around avoiding defenders and he's keeping his eyes downfield."

A few NFL scouts were in attendance on Wednesday possibly to watch tight ends Travis Vokolek and Austin Allen.

"Scouts should be looking at those guys," Lubick said. "Because I think my last year at Oregon we had three tight ends that all went to the NFL and these two are the best I've ever been around from a consistency leadership and just the way they practice. Coach Beckton does a great job with them."

And finally, the NU offensive line seems confident what they can do on the field thanks to the effort they've put in off of it.

"We did a lot of bonding stuff, especially over COVID," said redshirt freshman lineman Ethan Piper. "And I think it's really paying off for us. I know this our 5th day, 5th practice, but you can just feel the energy."

Nebraska's back at practice on Thursday with head coach Scott Frost scheduled to speak to reporters on Friday.