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Huskers Begin Preparations for Colorado
Courtesy: NU Media Relations
11/19/2002
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Courtesy: Scott Bruhn/NU Media Relations

Lincoln ? The Nebraska football team began preparations for the regular-season finale with No. 17 Colorado with a two-hour practice in full pads Tuesday afternoon on the grass fields north of Memorial Stadium. Today?s workout marked the Huskers? first practice since Saturday?s loss at Kansas State, and Nebraska Head Coach Frank Solich said the players are looking to bounce back against Colorado.

"The players are disappointed coming off last week?s game," Solich said. "This is the final regular-season game, and we want to play exceptionally well and be on top of our game. That is our attitude and that is what we are pointing toward."

On the injury front, Solich said cornerback DeJuan Groce returned to practice Tuesday after leaving the Kansas State game early with an injury, while tight end Jon Bowling is listed as day to day.

The Huskers, 7-5 overall and 3-4 in the Big 12, now turn their attention toward a Buffalo squad that is 8-3 on the season and has clinched a berth in the Big 12 title game on Dec. 7.

"They are an excellent football team that is playing well now," Solich said. "Offensively, they look to be as strong an offensive team as we have seen this year, and the team we saw last week was a very good offensive team.

Solich said Colorado?s depth makes the Buffs offense very formidable.

"They can throw in one back after another at both running back spots and they are a very strong and physical on the offensive line," Solich said. "Their game plan is to wear down opponents by coming at you and with big backs that run.

"The key for us is to not let those guys get started and play to the point where you have gap responsibility and to try to cut down the big plays from their offense."

Solich said one of the keys for the Huskers will be to attempt to slow down CU junior tailback Chris Brown, who is averaging a nation?s best 158.55 yards per game and has 1,744 yards in 11 games.

"He ranks with the very top backs, not only in the country right now, but when you look back over the years," Solich said. "What he has been able to produce for them, in terms of being a physical runner, as well as having the speed to make the big plays. You don?t find that in all backs, and he is an outstanding football player."

The Huskers will return to the practice field on Wednesday, and will practice Thursday and Friday before taking the weekend off.

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