Can’t we just fast forward to football season?

 Don’t get me wrong. I love the months of June and July, but to be honest, I’m tired of the heat, I’m tired of the humidity and I’m tired of those darn mosquitos.
Can’t we just fast forward to football season?
The only blessing in this whole equation is that undoubtedly, there always seems to be Husker football in the news, each and every week, one way or another, and with the official announcement a few days ago that tight ends Matt Snyder and David Engelhaupt are now longer with the team, that seemingly puts Aurora redshirt freshman Austin Allen even more front and center than before.
After listening to some of the coaches’ comments following the spring game, it sounded as if the former Aurora Husky had the inside track to either the number two or number three tight end position. And since Scott Frost’s offense uses multiple tight ends on any given play, that signals loads of potential playing time.
I caught up with Austin just last week and he told me that this summer is going pretty much as scheduled, the team focusing on summer weight training and on getting bigger, faster and stronger.
“ But most importantly we are growing stronger together as a team,” he pointed out. “Everything we do we are told to do as a team.
“Since two of our tight ends are no longer on the team, this means that all of us who remain have to really lock it in because those were two guys that at least had a little bit of experience under their belt.
“I do believe that these coaches will get us younger guys ready by the time we are needed, hopefully by game one.”
He said the team trains every weekday except Wednesdays.
“We lift and run on each of those days on top of ‘skills and drills’ on Tuesdays and Thursdays, which consists of 7-on-7 and individual drills”, he said.
It’s a given that one of the things Austin has had to work on adding additional weight in order to block those big, bad and ugly Big Ten defensive ends. He said he was on track prior to the spring game but then got very sick (as did several other Huskers) prior to the contest, dropping 13 pounds down to 223. Still, he managed to have a good game back in April, snagging three passes for 43 yards along with gaining valuable experience and confidence.
“They told me before spring ball that they wanted to see me get to about 250 by the end of summer. And as we are nearing the end of summer workouts, I’m sitting at about 245.”
That weight will be much needed, as mentioned, so it will be interesting to see Austin as his new and improved, bulkier self, and how that will affect his speed and quickness.
He told me Frost’s offense is unique in the fact that, depending on the formation, he can line up from as many as four different positions on the field yet still end up in the same route concept, something that contributed to UCF’s success a year ago, and something that will hopefully carry over to Lincoln.
“So you have to know everything. The summer has given us a lot of time to look over our playbooks as well. We go over a lot of it in skills and drills. This offense is definitely one that loves to use the tight end and that’s something that intrigued me when they were at UCF. Jack Stoll (a sophomore from Colorado) is by far the leader of our group. He has been not only a leader on the field but a leader off the field, doing everything right and setting a good example for all of the incoming freshmen.”
Okay, that really did it. Somehow, some way, I’ve got to find a way to survive these next 44 days.

DAVE BRADLEY can be reached at

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