The exact severity of Nebraska freshman wide receiver Wan’Dale Robinson’s left foot/ankle injury isn’t known, but coach Scott Frost confirmed Tuesday that the team expects him back at some point this season.
“Wan’Dale will be fine,” said Frost, who has a policy of not discussing injury specifics publicly.
Robinson went down at the end of a catch-and-run in the second quarter of Saturday night’s loss to Minnesota and appeared to take a hard shot from a Gopher tackler near the outside of his left ankle. He stayed down on the turf and eventually was helped off to Nebraska’s sideline and into a medical tent.
When he emerged, he was put onto a cart that took him to the visiting locker room. In the second half, Robinson returned to the Husker sideline in street clothes and sporting a walking boot, but no crutches.
The talented receiver already owns NU’s freshman record for catches with 27 (a team best) and has 550 total yards of offense to go along with four touchdowns.
Help wanted: Frost said Nebraska is practicing Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday this week during its bye and the setup gives the team a chance to play "good-on-good" extensively and also get a good look at a lot of young players.
Asked which freshmen he wants to step up or that the staff might look particularly close at this week, Frost said, "any and all of them."
“It would be great to have a couple of the (offensive) linemen, (Ethan) Piper, (Bryce) Benhart and those guys, start to give us some help. Some skill guys, (running back) Rahmir Johnson still has a couple of games to play in and I’m expecting him to help us down the stretch. Guys on defense, too, you might see a bunch of guys later in the year, defensive linemen like Mosai Newsom and Ty Robinson.
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“Again, there’s too many to count, but if those guys are ready to play, we could seriously use the help on the depth chart.”
Frost said he thought Broc Bando played hard in the second half after replacing Trent Hixson at left guard, but that there will continue to be competition going forward for playing time up front. Ideally, he said, there would be a rotation of effective players on the offensive line.
Bando "played hard”: Lincoln native and sophomore offensive lineman Broc Bando replaced sophomore Trent Hixson at left guard for the second half against Minnesota, marking the first extended playing time of his career.
“Broc came in and played hard,” Frost said of the 6-foot-5, 310-pounder. “That move was made because of a couple of protections that we didn’t pick up on the interior of our line.”
Hixson held a starting spot through all of spring ball, preseason camp and the first half of the season and he was put on scholarship for the remainder of his career back in August. Frost said he thought the battle for playing time on the offensive line would continue and indicated it could include players beyond just Bando and Hixson.
“We’ll see what we’re going to do going forward,” Frost said. “I was pleased with Broc coming in and answering the bell. He definitely came in and played hard, so this bye week will give us a little bit of opportunity to gauge who gives us the best chance.
“In an ideal situation, you’d have a rotation anyway, and with more depth, we’d like to rotate anyway.”