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Mickey Joseph says Huskers are 'a better team' since he took over as interim coach

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With one more game left on the schedule, Mickey Joseph took the podium one more time Tuesday afternoon for his weekly media availability session.

Although Nebraska finds itself at 3-8 and with a long winter ahead, the Huskers want to close out the 2022 season on a high note.

"We've got one mission left. One game," Joseph said. "I expect and I know our boys will come out and give full effort."

Joseph talked about facing Iowa, the future and more ahead of Friday's game in Iowa City.

Playing spoiler: ­­­­­The Hawkeyes come into Friday's game with a chance to win a second straight Big Ten West title, on top of an eighth straight win over the Huskers. Even though Nebraska has dropped five straight, including a heart-breaker against Wisconsin last week, Joseph is confident his group will come out ready to go.

"We can be the spoiler," Joseph said. "It's a rival game and I know they're going to be up for it. They're going to come out and play them full force."

Joseph said the Hawkeyes present a similar challenge as Nebraska's four opponents — big linemen, a good run game and a stout defense.

Looking ahead: There's another game on the schedule, sure, but the focus around Nebraska is on the future. With a coaching hire on the horizon, Joseph was asked several questions about roster management, recruiting and what his future looks like.

Joseph quipped he'll be sitting on the couch the day after the season ends and spending the day with his family. He'll meet with Trev Alberts once the season ends, but the interim coach reiterated he's focused on controlling what he can. And the Hawkeyes.

"The one thing I'm going to be able to control is getting this team ready for Iowa," Joseph said.

Setting the table: Whether or not Joseph remains at Nebraska going forward, he was asked about setting the foundation for the program. 

"I think they're a better team right now than when I found them," Joseph said. "They're a better team, they're a more confident team and I know they haven't gotten the wins, but I think they're better people right now. They can see the growth in themselves and I can see the growth in them. And I think that they know we're a couple pieces away from building something."

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