Football Facility, 9.27

Nebraska athletic director Bill Moos addresses the crowd assembled for the announcement of the Huskers' new football facility in September 2019 at the East Stadium Plaza.

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Nebraska athletic director Bill Moos' busy day Wednesday included an appearance on the "Sports Nightly" radio program.

Here are some highlights from the discussion:

* Asked if he thinks Nebraska's become something of a maverick in the Big Ten — what with its aggressive mindset toward playing this season — Moos chuckled.

"Well, we were vocal, and I've got to say it worked," he said.

* Moos praised Nebraska players for following COVID-19 protocols. "We've had a few positives," he said. However, "We're way down compared to a lot of the other programs in our conference footprint. I'm confident our people will continue to do a good job there."

* He thinks Nebraska football can have "somewhat of a normal" travel routine. It'll be important to make sure the aircraft is clean, he said. Same goes for buses and hotel rooms. But the travel discussion is in its early stages, he said.

"We've got to get a schedule in place first so we know where we're going to play and when," he said. "We're going to go to work on that starting tomorrow."

* He said Nebraska learned Wednesday it can now ramp up to 20 hours a week of football-related activity (from 12 hours), but won't be able to don full pads until the Big Ten's rapid-testing system is established leaguewide. That'll probably be sometime around Sept. 30, he said. 

* Nebraska's training table, shut down last month to help cut costs in the athletic department, will re-open for football players "because that's the only sport that will be competing in the fall," he said, adding, "We will lock down North Stadium, just confined to football student-athletes, and start to fuel them as we get closer to that Sept 30 date." 

* He said some furloughed employees will be brought back (training table workers, game-management folks, etc). 

It won't be a high percentage of employees coming back, he said.

He looks forward to the day everyone returns to work, he said.

NU announced last month that 51 employees in the athletic department of more than 330 were being furloughed for four months — through the end of 2020 — and the rest are going to see a 10% salary reduction over the same time frame.

* Asked about possibility of Nebraska playing Friday games, Moos stressed that he wants to play Iowa on Black Friday.

Will there be other Friday games? Too early to say, he says.

In order to provide enough inventory to TV partners in a smaller window, it sounds like Big Ten teams will be playing Fridays by necessity.

* He reiterated he feels universities should be able to decide whether they have fans in the stands.

"I continue to feel that should be a local decision," he said. 

However, "If it was going to be a deal breaker, we had to go ahead and step back and accept it," he said. "Our fans are going to be able to watch the Huskers, they just aren't going to be able to do it from their seats."

This article originally ran on journalstar.com.

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