LINCOLN — Nebraska defensive lineman Keem Green still has three games to play while retaining his redshirt this season, and defensive line coach Tony Tuioti fully intends for Green to play those games.
It just may be closer to the end of the season.
“He’s got three, four more weeks before he’s ready to go again,” Tuioti said. “It might be two out of the last three that he’s ready to go.”
Nebraska plays Wisconsin and Iowa in two of its last three games.
After appearing in the fourth quarter of the loss to Ohio State, Green sat out the Huskers’ win over Northwestern despite Nebraska having serious depth issues along the defensive line. Redshirt freshman Casey Rogers played instead, and junior defensive end Ben Stille logged 70 snaps — roughly twice what he normally does.
Green was a coveted, highly-rated junior college prospect who couldn’t sign with his preferred team, South Carolina, due to SEC academic rules. He arrived at Nebraska during training camp because he was finishing coursework at Highland Community College, so he is going to redshirt this season to have two years left to play at NU. NCAA rules allow Green to play four games this season while preserving his redshirt.
“We have it kind of mapped out, the games we want to use him for, especially the big, physical teams that we’re going to be facing down the line,” Tuioti said. “We’re prepping him for that.”
Tuioti called the four-game rule a luxury. Nebraska has a redshirt tracker who tells the coaches how many games each redshirt-expectant player has appeared in.
The 6-foot-5, 315-pound Green is with the top defense whenever it does its “team tempo” periods.