Published Thursday, September 27, 2012 AT 6:10 PM / Updated at 7:28 PM
Practice report, Sept. 27: Pelini says senior LBs ready to go
Jon Nyatawa Omaha World-Herald

As Nebraska’s attempted to slow down spread offenses for four weeks, the snaps have been limited for senior linebackers Alonzo Whaley and Sean Fisher. But both are expected to get more looks against Wisconsin this weekend.

And the two veterans have responded well to their increased roles, according to Pelini.

“They’ll be ready to go,” Pelini said.

But Pelini said it’s not just about Whaley and Fisher, who’ll start at the two outside linebacker spots in Nebraska’s base 4-3 defense. “Everybody’s got to execute at a high level,” Pelini said.

More notes from Pelini Thursday…

>> Safety P.J. Smith and defensive tackle Thad Randle, who have both missed some practice time this week, are healthy enough to play Saturday, Pelini said. … Defensive tackle Chase Rome rejoined the team before last weekend’s game against Idaho State, but did not participate. He is available to play Saturday, according to Pelini.

>> Linebacker Will Compton said Monday that he figured the coaching staff would go “deep in our playbook” this week. Especially since the base formation has to be utilized a bit more frequently (NU spent extensive time in the preseason working with that personnel group). So, any new concepts or strategies? Said Pelini: “There’s always new things. It just depends on what we choose to throw out there.”

>> Athletic director Tom Osborne informed Pelini of his decision to retire on Tuesday, Pelini said. “He’s meant a lot to me and I appreciate everything he’s done,” Pelini said.

>> Former Ohio State lineman Jason Winrow, a college teammate of Pelini’s in the ’90s, died Sunday. He was 41. Pelini hadn’t talked to Winrow in “years” but heard the news Wednesday. Said Pelini: “Tragedy. … A good man.”

* * *

Listen: Bo Pelini spoke to the media after Thursday’s practice about the Husker linebackers, NU’s need to execute against the Badgers, Wisconsin QB Joel Stave and more:

About Jon Nyatawa

Jon Nyatawa has covered local sports, primarily Nebraska football, for The Omaha World-Herald since 2008. He and his laptop, cell phone, tape recorder, pen and notebook all live in Lincoln. Follow him on Twitter: @JonNyatawa. Email him here: He welcomes feedback.


  1. mac says:

    The negative: Whisky offense vs NU defense…Wisky is big and athletic on the line, and fast in the backfield. Neither are good news for our non penetr ating d-line and slow lbs. Think UCLA with better athletes. Adv: Wisky

    The positive: NU offense vs Wisky d: they will disrupt TMart, who doesnt typically handle pressure too well. . But, we are too fast and well oiled to be held in check. adv: NU offense.

    Special teams: humm. Neither team has been stellar thus far, but Maher is clearly better. Adv: NU.

    Prediction: NU 26 Wisky 20.

  2. Wisconsin does not have near the team speed that UCLA had. Yes the Husker defense is not playing great but they will do much better against this group of Badgers than they did against the Bruins. It is the Husker offense that needs to perform at their potential. If so the Huskers win this one by 14 or more points. I say more because the game is in Lincoln. Huskers 34 Badgers 17

    1. mac says:

      How many times have we thought this the past few years only to pull egg from our collective faces. We were supposed to school UCLA too with all those freshmen and a new coaching staff. Sure would be great if you were right…restore sine respect and maybe get some big time recruits.

      1. Otto Von Husker says:

        Sadly mac is right…TO got out before the walls come tumbling down this weekend.

        1. Terrance says:

          Tom got out before the walls crumble down this weekend? any buddy tell this @#$#!! that TO is not leaving until January 1st?? some of my fellow Husker fans need to read better and get a lil smarter, and its funny how i am reading that Wisconsin”s Offensive line is more athletic and they got better speed in the back field! probably why they have been playing so well the last month! LOL

          1. A Fan says:

            Wisconsin is better competition than Southern Miss, Arkansas State, and Idaho State. The last team we faced who had athletes ran 653 yards up our . When Nebraska does that to Ohio State or Michigan or South Carolina (let alone Oregon or Alabama)… then we can break out the cigars. Until then, every game Nebraska has against peer competition is at best… a toss up. Sometimes (read: 2011 Wisconsin, Michigan) we get blown off the field.

  3. Spen says:

    Ucla has waaaaaaay more team speed than wisky. But either way Whaley and Fischer are extremely slow!!!!!! Hope the coaches know what they are doing!?!?!?

    1. honestjohn says:

      if the starters aren’t cutting it, find a place on the bench for them. the 2nd teamers better be ready. i have little faith in fischer, but also don’t mind being wrong now and again with regards to to the huskers. what do i know anyways?

  4. Joey says:

    I see Wisc becoming another Texass Shorthorns. Because just like the Big 12′s biggest division destroyer (and I don’t mean talent wise). NU moves to the BIG, and here’s Wisc. The players with the mouth like Texass, and the annoying fans like Mizzou, or Colorado. Not sure which Big 12 team was worse on fans. My guess is Mizzou. They would spit at our players. I agree, IOWA a long time ago was a bitter rival with NU. But Wisc has drew 1st blood. I picture the fans being louder than they ever been. I think NU should switch from Penn St and replace that with Wisc, a real lack luster in rivals. Those 2 teams are more like, just a good game. Now Mich, I think is our BIGGEST rival in our division. But not as much bad blood as there is between NU and Wisc.