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Hot Reads: The 2nd 2014 Commit

The list of players Nebraska has verbally committed to its 2014 recruiting class doubled in size on Wednesday.

South Grand Prairie (Texas) High safety Jason Hall verbally committed to Nebraska on Tuesday, becoming the second player to pledge to the Huskers in this recruiting cycle. Offensive coordinator Tim Beck and secondary coach Terry Joseph were the lead recruiters.

Hall (6-2, 190) is the long and lean sort of defensive back Nebraska favors, but he’s a bit off the radar at the moment. None of the major recruiting sites have a star or position ranking for him yet and Nebraska was the first school to offer him a scholarship. Since Nebraska did, North Texas has officially offered and Oklahoma, Ole Miss and Oklahoma State have shown greater interest.

That’s not an unfamiliar path for Nebraska on the recruiting trail. The Huskers staff has proven to be good at identifying talent early. Keeping it away from schools that may offer a better fit — closer to home, right conference, etc., etc. — but weren’t totally interested until Nebraska got involved has been a different story.

Based on what Hall said to Rivals yesterday, that might be a concern here:

“Nebraska really wanted me and they were my top school I wanted to go to,” Hall said. “I’ve had an offer from North Texas and OU, Oklahoma State, and Nevada are close to offering. There’s a chance I’ll keep an eye out for other schools but Nebraska is where I want to be.”

Also worth noting: Hall has yet to visit campus. For Nebraska fans who were getting antsy over the Huskers’ lack of commitments thus far, maybe this offers some relief but tread carefully. There are some reasons for caution.

STUDY HALL >>> If you’ve ever wanted to learn about the route match (a.k.a. pattern read) defense that Bo Pelini favors then this post from Florida State site Tomahawk Nation, which explains the concept throughly, is a must-read.

What exactly is pattern reading? The simplest explanation would be that pattern reading is a rules based system that dictates defenders’ coverage responsibility based on receiver distribution. It is primarily employed in the context of zone defense, though there are related concepts like “banjo/switch” coverages that are employed in man-to-man defenses. To understand how pattern matching defenses differ from traditional zones, first we need to be clear on how those traditional zone defenses operate.

Nick Saban is also a pattern read proponent and, as the story correctly notes, perhaps his greatest skill as a coach isn’t the scheme itself — others use those concepts — but his ability to teach that comparatively complicated scheme to college players.

And, finally, some quick-hitters today:

–Recruiting coordinator Ross Els preaches patience in the recruiting process: “You can’t compare us to Ohio State and Michigan and Notre Dame. We will not fill up that quickly.”

–Aaron Musfeldt does the legwork and offers a model of what the Big Ten schedules could look like under the nine-game conference schedule, which starts in 2016.

–Did Bill McCartney take a veiled dig at Nebraska?

–Was Tommie Frazier a “system quarterback”? A writer for Texas site, Barking Carnival, makes the case.