August 23, 2009

Week 2 fall camp breakdown

Nebraska wrapped up its second week of fall camp on Saturday. If you haven't visited on a daily basis in the past week, you've probably missed a lot.

Here is a quick summary and breakdown of NU's practices since last Saturday. The Huskers will hit the field for week two of fall camp again on Monday morning for their second two-a-day practice session.


***Junior running back Quentin Castille was dismissed from the team for what head coach Bo Pelini called a violations of team rules.

***Freshman running back Rex Burkhead has been promoted to the Huskers' No. 2 back with Castille's dismissal.

***Sophomore offensive lineman Luke Lingenfelter was added to Nebraska's 105-man roster in place of freshman lineman Jesse Coffey, who was injured earlier this week.

***Redshirt freshman offensive lineman Quentin Toailoa was also added to the 105.

***Junior tight end Dreu Young rejoined practice for the first time this fall on Monday after undergoing back surgery four days before the start of fall camp. He still hasn't suited up in full or even half pads, instead just working in shorts and spider pads.

***Walk-on freshman offensive lineman Brandon Chapek from Wahoo (Neb.) Bishop Neumann was a late add-on to NU's 105 man roster.


***Freshman linebacker Eric Martin moved over from MIKE to BUCK, and he is now working as the No. 2 BUCK behind redshirt freshman Sean Fisher.

***Junior Adam Watson moved over wide receiver to defensive back.


***Freshman offensive lineman Brent Qvale missed the bulk of the week with an undisclosed injury, but he is still listed on the Huskers' 105.

***Junior offensive lineman Mike Smith missed some time with a minor back injury, but returned midway through the week.

***Junior running back Roy Helu missed three days with what head coach Bo Pelini called "tightness" in his hamstring. Helu returned to practice in full pads on Friday.

***Freshman defensive tackle Thaddeus Randle missed the bulk of the week with an undisclosed injury.

***Freshman defensive back Dijon Washington missed the early portion of the week with an injury, but returned to practice in full pads.

***Sophomore cornerback Alfonzo Dennard was held out of Monday and Tuesday's practices with a hamstring injury, but returned Wednesday and practiced the rest of the week.

***Junior offensive lineman Ricky Henry missed a couple days of practice with a hamstring injury to open the week, but returned Wednesday.

***As previously mentioned, Coffey suffered an injury and was taken off the 105 on Monday and replaced by Lingenfelter.

***Fisher also missed some time, but practiced fully for the bulk of the week.

***Freshman defensive back Andrew Green missed the bulk of the fall camp with an undisclosed injury, but returned Wednesday and practiced the rest of the week in full pads.


Rex Burkhead, RB (5-11, 200), Fr.
With the loss of Castille, the question of whether true freshman running back Rex Burkhead would see the field got answered pretty clearly. Burkhead has already been seeing time with the top offensive units and his maturity has impressed his Husker teammates, and Pelini said he was currently No. 2 on the depth chart.

Andy Christensen, OL (6-3, 305), Sr.
One of the better position battles in fall camp is between senior Andy Christensen and junior Ricky Henry for the starting right guard position. Christensen is finally back to the player he was in 2007 before he tore his ACL in the USC game.

Sean Fisher, OLB (6-6, 238), RFr.
Defensive coordinator Carl Pelini and linebackers coach Mike Ekeler singled out redshirt Sean Fisher as the linebacker having the best camp on the team. Fisher's ability to cover at his size allows him to start in the base, nickel and dime defensive packages.

Niles Paul, WR (6-1, 215), Jr.
Ted Gilmore said junior Niles Paul is the only wide receiver who's locked up a starting position through two weeks of fall camp. Gilmore said Paul has become NU's No. 1 receiver with his consistency and "exceptional play" throughout fall camp.

Rickey Thenarse, DB (6-0, 205), Sr.
The biggest reason why senior safety Rickey Thenarse had made a big jump in camp is the game has finally slowed down for him. Thenarse said on a scale of 1 to 10 he rates his knowledge of the defense as a "10". Secondary coach Marvin Sanders singled out Thenarse as one of the players having the best camps in the secondary.


"If you practice hard, everybody gets a fair shot," Paul said. "If he puts you in and you basically piss down your leg, then Coach Gilmore will tell you pissed down your leg. He gives everybody a fair shot, and it's an even competition." - Junior wide receiver Niles Paul on the coaching philosophies of NU receivers coach Ted Gilmore.


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