All year round, former Husker and NFL veteran Adam Carriker is taking the pulse of Husker Nation. In the "Carriker Chronicles" video series, he breaks down the latest NU news, upcoming opponents, player updates and recruiting information, and he offers his insight into the X's and O's and more.
On Wednesday's episode, Adam Carriker talks to NU running back Dedrick Mills about playing in Scott Frost's offense, his fullback role in the "old-school" option and more.
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Here's a transcript of today's show:
Adam Carriker: Welcome to the Carriker Chronicles, the people’s show, where we check the pulse of Husker Nation. Brought to you by Nebraska Spine Hospital. Today, I am joined by Nebraska running back, Dedrick Mills.
How are you doing today, Dedrick?
Dedrick Mills: I’m doing very well.
Adam Carriker: I want to thank you for joining me. I know you’ve been asked this several times probably, but I’m going to ask it anyway because I think my listeners will enjoy it. How did it feel playing fullback, in a little bit of that old school Nebraska option look? I know you did some of that at Georgia Tech. How did it feel for you on Saturday?
Dedrick Mills: It felt pretty good, I’m used to playing that position like I did at Georgia Tech, as everybody knows. It felt amazing to be back in that position and to run the ball the way I did.
Adam Carriker: So, the Georgia Tech triple option offense is a little different between the option that Nebraska is known for running. Talk to me about some of the similarities and differences between the triple option that Georgia Tech ran and what you did Saturday, playing the fullback position at Nebraska.
Dedrick Mills: At Georgia Tech, we had two running backs on the field plus the fullback. Sometimes, we’d have a tight end as an up back. Saturday was a little different with having one running back and a fullback, but my responsibility was the same so it made it easy.
Adam Carriker: Coming to the Nebraska, Scott Frost spread offense, what’s that been like for you? Obviously you practiced that option look some, but how much of a difference has it been coming into a spread offense, from what you previously did in your college career?
Dedrick Mills: It’s way different. It’s a lot more being patient, and detail oriented as far as the runs. The offenses I’ve always been in, you get the ball and go. You still have to make the reads, but it’s a lot quicker. In this offense, you have to wait for the line to set up blocks, find the crease, and hit it.
Adam Carriker: Is there one of these offenses that are a little more difficult, easier, more fun? How would you compare those?
Dedrick Mills: I mean, since getting here, this offense has been way more fun. I love the way we run, I love everything; the whole process is a run downhill offense.
Adam Carriker: Talk to me, because if you’re gonna play a little fullback, you gotta be able to block. Are you capable of putting someone on their back? I gotta ask that question, man.
Dedrick Mills: Of course, you saw that Saturday! I was feeling comfortable when they had me back there playing fullback. It’s a big job… whatever I gotta do to make a play for my teammates, sacrifice, make a block for them, I’ll do.
Adam Carriker: Alright, I like that. Last week, you were carrying a football around all week, it was well documented; where did you pick that up from? You had a few fumbles earlier this season, so you carried the ball around everywhere- class, media, in-between, all-day, every day. Where did you pick that up from, and do you feel like it helped you as far as the fumbling on Saturday?
Dedrick Mills: Well, it definitely helped me, I didn’t fumble on Saturday. I picked it up from my coach when I used to fumble in high school. I never really fumbled in high school, just once or twice. He didn’t like that. Just once or twice was not good enough for him, just like it’s not good enough for me. One fumble is not good enough for me on the season, I don’t like that. So I had to change up a few things and work on some stuff in practice. That’s why I carried the ball around the whole week.
Adam Carriker: Now I am curious, what was the extent? Where did the carrying the ball end? I’m assuming when you showered, you put the ball down. Where do the lengths end? Are you sitting there eating breakfast with it in one hand and a fork in the other? How far did it go?
Dedrick Mills: It went all day, even at home, I carried it around when I was at home. Unless I was getting in the shower or going to bed, I didn’t put the ball down…. Woke up the next morning and picked it back up.
Adam Carriker: I like it. Kind of like shirts when I was in college. I’d put it down on the floor before bed, wake up the next morning, and put it back on. Only you were carrying a football. Little bit more effective there. So obviously, the game didn’t go the way people were hoping Saturday. What was Scott Frost’s message to the team afterward and what did he say to the offense?
Dedrick Mills: He didn’t specifically point anyone out, he just said you have to come back and be better next week. We just gotta move on to the next game and forget about this last game, that’s it.
Adam Carriker: Has he had anymore of a message after watching film and practices, as you’re preparing for Northwestern?
Dedrick Mills: Not really anything different, just come out each day and work like it’s a game. Just work every time you come out here and get a chance.
Adam Carriker: So what do you guys see in Northwestern? They played Wisconsin pretty tough, a lot tougher than Michigan played them last week. What do you see in their defense that you guys are going to be facing on Saturday?
Dedrick Mills: They have some pretty good defensive players. They’re very sound on defense. They’re way focused on the details and they’re a very disciplined team. We just have to come in and be more disciplined with the details that we have put in for this week.
Adam Carriker: Now, yourself as a player, you got on campus, made an immediate impact, and people were impressed by you. What’s it been like since you got on campus, and what’s your experience been like with Husker Nation?
Dedrick Mills: It’s been good. I enjoy being here at the University of Nebraska, I feel like I’m at home. I love it here, all the coaches, all the people… everything feels like an at home environment.
Adam Carriker: Very cool. What would be in your mind- it’s your first year in this offense- would be a successful season for the Huskers and the offense, specifically?
Dedrick Mills: We just want to win every day and win every game. We’re still focused on the Big Ten Championship. We gotta come out and take it one game at a time to win it. That’s a successful season to me. I don’t talk about too much else, I just want to be part of my team, and help my teammates reach those team goals.
Adam Carriker: Who are some of the guys you’ve gotten to know, bonded with, and pal around with since you’ve arrived here?
Dedrick Mills: Lamar Jackson. He’s my roommate so we spend all day together. I’ve bonded with (Dicaprio) Bootle, Mo Barry, Maurice Washington, Adrian…. Pretty much all the defensive guys because I have to go against them every day and I like to talk trash. We’ve kind of bonded through talking trash to each other. That’s how we came together. It’s like all of us are brothers, for real.
Adam Carriker: Who talks the most trash on the defense?
Dedrick Mills: Pretty much all the DBs and Linebackers.
Adam Carriker: That sounds about right, those Wide Receivers and DBs always talk the most trash, goodness. So I want to go back to a question that I asked you earlier. You mentioned playing in Scott Frost’s offense a lot of fun, and guys always say that about playing in this offense. What makes this a unique and fun offense to play in?
Dedrick Mills: It’s the style and who you’re being coached by. Coach Frost, he’s a magnificent coach. Knows the game, knows how to put you in the best situations. That’s what makes the game fun for me, and that’s why I came here, because of the coaches and the coaching style he has.
Adam Carriker: Alright man, I want to thank you for joining me, and good luck this Saturday. Until next time, Husker Nation, Go Big Red, and always remember…
Dedrick Mills: Throw the bones!
Thanks again to the Nebraska Spine Hospital. Ladies and gentlemen, when it’s your spine, you do not want to mess around. Experience matters. That’s why you can trust the experts at Nebraska Spine Hospital, the region's only spine specific hospital. They are the best at what they do.
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