Nebraska Head Coach Frank Solich
On the Independence Bowl:
I am excited about the opportunity to play in the bowl game as a visiting coach from the Big 12. I have heard nothing but positive remarks from coaches whose teams have played in the game in the past few years. This is an opportunity to go and play a great football game. In one sense, we are looking at this as a business trip. We are focused on going down and playing good football.
On Nebraska?s injury situation:
Philip Bland (rover) is coming off of injury and will be questionable for the game. Wes Cody (offensive guard) is in a similar situation. Both sustained their injuries in preparation for the bowl game. Hopefully, we will get them both back on the practice field and get them going again.
Curt Dukes (quarterback) had a knee operation in which they put screws in his kneecap. This will hold him out of spring ball, but we will see where he is at when he recovers. They put two screws through his knee to make sure the bone and behind the bone are attached and can heal. He had injured it slightly during the season, but it was not bothering him to play. There were points of swelling every now and then when it flared up. We would like to have him in spring ball, but won?t be able to so it will hurt us. He does have one spring under his belt already and has been initiated to our offensive system somewhat."
On using the option against Ole Miss:
If you look at it, David (Cutcliffe) has an understanding of what the option game is about and how to stop it. They will have a plan to cause us problems if that is all we run, but we hope to utilize the option in a way that we can move the ball to put points on the board. Jammal (Lord) has done a good job of running the option this season and we will work to get some good plays off of the option.
On expected strategy of Ole Miss:
They have shown a mix of things. They have come out against opponents passing or attacking. (Eli) Manning is a complete quarterback in terms of his passing game. With a three-step drop option we can not get to them. We need to make sure that we present a sound defense. With a mix of fronts, blitzes, and zone and man coverages we hope to be able to throw them off a little bit.
On Offensive Coordinator duties for bowl game:
I have enjoyed the role of offensive coordinator and calling plays from the sidelines. I want to make sure that everything is done right for the program and that it gives us the best chance to get things done. It is the right time to step aside and I am excited for the offense and defense to move on from there. As head coach I don?t intend to lose grasp of the offense and defense. I won?t be a figurehead on the sidelines. I want to try to be a part of the team ? It is just coming from a different angle now. There will be more time to deal with the players. The time previously spent as offensive coordinator will now be spent dealing directly with the players.
On developing game plan with small staff:
We have been much more in unison in terms of putting things together. We have been in and out (recruiting) as a coaching staff and working with less numbers. I will partially call the plays, but I will also be in tune to the suggestions of the coaching staff. It will be a coordinated effort to get things done.