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Nebraska football practice, 8/14

Nebraska defensive lineman Keem Green watches a drill during practice at Hawks Championship Center. The junior-college transfer continues to make progress in Nebraska's system.

One could say Jahkeem Green is working overtime to prepare himself for Nebraska's Aug. 31 opener against South Alabama.

"The mindset is to get him ready for Aug. 31 and then we'll just play it by ear from there," Husker defensive line coach Tony Tuioti said Monday.

Green, a 6-foot-5, 325-pound defensive lineman who started practicing just last week, has to learn Nebraska's system and get into playing shape.

He's practicing primarily at left end in Nebraska's 3-4 look along with Carlos Davis and Deontre Thomas.

"He's got a ways to go," Tuioti said of Green. "He's doing an excellent job just trying to plug the gap as much as he can. But there are a lot of reps that have been missed and a lot of conditioning that's been missed."

Tuioti said Nebraska head strength coach Zach Duval has a plan in place specifically designed to prepare Green physically. What's more, Husker graduate assistant Tony Washington spends extra time coaching Green and watching film with him. Washington was a standout linebacker at Oregon from 2010 to 2014 while Scott Frost was on the Ducks' coaching staff.

"He's doing extra stuff now, which is great," Tuioti said Green. "We're going to try to close the gap as much as we can before we get to Aug. 31."

Green, a transfer from Highland (Kansas) Community College, looked good at times in Monday's practice, making a few tackles in the run game, the coach said.

"I think it surprised a lot of people that he was able to make the plays in the run game," Tuioti said. "And then he's really quick and can provide us with pass-rush abilities. So he has the combination of power and speed that we want."

But conditioning remains an issue.

"Right now, it's two plays and then after that there's a big drop-off," Tuioti said. "That's what happens when you're not training with us for a long period of time over the summer."

Reach the writer at 402-473-7440 or ssipple@journalstar.com. On Twitter @HuskerExtraSip.

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Husker columnist

Steven, a lifelong Nebraskan, newspaper enthusiast and UNL grad, joined the Journal Star in 1990 and has covered NU football since 1995.

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