The Nebraska coaching staff is wrapping up the evaluation period and is full steam ahead into camp season. Nebraska will have a busy month of June between the camps they are hosting and also traveling to. Before we know it, it will be June 15 for the first Friday Night Lights camp of the Scott Frost era. The first batch of summer enrollees are now joining the team in Lincoln as well so things are starting to ramp up both with the team and on the recruiting trail.
Thomas Grayson, running back, Tulsa, Oklahoma
Rahmir Johnson, running back, Oradell, New Jersey
Garrett Nelson, defensive end, Scottsbluff, Nebraska
Ethan Piper, defensive tackle, Norfolk, Nebraska
Garrett Snodgrass, athlete, York, Nebraska
>>When Chip Kelly decided on UCLA and Scott Frost got the job at Nebraska, conventional wisdom told us that they would be in their fair share of battles for recruits, particularly at the quarterback position. We now have a couple of battles brewing between Kelly and Frost. 2019 4-star QB Jayden Daniels recently cut down his list of schools and both UCLA and Nebraska made the list. Right now, I’d put those two as the leaders with UCLA out in front. Nebraska really needs to get Daniels on campus before they can make a big move with him. The other QB that the two schools could be battling for is recent Nebraska offer Shae Suiaunoa from Houston, Texas. Suiaunoa is originally from LA and he told me that the only trip he has planned right now is to UCLA on June 4. Expect many more of these battles between the two offensive geniuses.
>>Since the new staff has been in place, I’ve heard such overwhelming feedback about them from parents, coaches and recruits that I ended up doing a piece on it yesterday after talking to Pima Community College Head Coach Jim Monaco. If it seems like Nebraska is laying the groundwork to build meaningful relationships, it's because they are. Remember that the former coach of incoming freshman Caleb Tannor raved to me about the staff back in January. 4-star DE/OLB Marcus Hicks’ dad is also extremely impressed with the staff. Remember Casey Rogers saying this staff makes Nebraska a sleeping giant?
I give all of these examples to illustrate the point that the good vibes about the staff isn’t just coming from recruits that have committed to them but it’s a variety of people around the country that feel this way including 4-star QB Michael Johnson Jr.'s head coach Josh Line who told me yesterday "Coach [Mario Verduzco] has been by here once and I really liked him. He has a great energy about him. I just like Scott Frost. I like everything about him. He approaches things the right way. He’s a coach that kids want to play for and what they did was really impressive at UCF. “
>>This spring, Nebraska has continued to put an emphasis on recruiting Alabama. One of the latest offers from the state is 3-star defensive tackle Patrick Lucas. I spoke with him and he told me that he got his offer from defensive line coach Mike Dawson. The other schools on his radar right now are Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Tennessee and Florida but he tells me that distance will not be a factor and he will go to whatever school is the best option for him. The staff offered him at UCF and were very interested in him then. He didn’t know Coach Dawson then, but he knew Coach Frost. His plan is to take official visits during the season and maybe a couple after. Lucas is most interested in playing time and the relationship with the coaching staff.
>>Back in March, Nebraska offered 3-star lineman Ben Coleman from Temucula, California. He told me at the time that the offer was huge for him so I made sure to check back in with him this week to see how things were going in his recruitment. He tells me that things are progressing nicely with the Huskers and he is in constant contact with offensive coordinator Troy Walters, who recruits California. Coleman has started having individual conversations with Dawson as well since Nebraska sees him playing on the defensive line in college. Coleman also said that the whole tradition and fan base at Nebraska are so different than what he is used to in California and that has him very interested in Nebraska.
As for his summer plans, he is trying to get to Lincoln. He’s hoping to get here for the June 22 Friday Night Lights camp. They haven’t set it in stone but that’s what the goal is and then he’d come back to Lincoln for a game day because he “knows the Sea of Red is crazy.” Keep an eye on Coleman as he’s not in a real rush to make his decision but is developing a great relationship with the staff.
>>A couple of quick roster notes. Expect more attrition. This should all mostly be settled within a week as guys report back for summer workouts I would keep an eye on the linebackers and tight ends to see who makes it back to Lincoln. The other hot topic about the roster is who could potentially be joining as a grad transfer. There has been smoke around Notre Dame cornerback Nick Watson being looked at by Nebraska. I’m told the staff is still weighing their options on the best course of action with any particular grad transfers but corner is a position they’d look to add to.
Greg is the Recruiting Analyst for Hail Varsity and has covered Husker athletics since 2013. He has always had a passion for sports while growing up in the Chicago area. As he got older and had to hang up his cleats and sneakers, he realized his passion for sports went beyond just watching and attending games. He has covered many events from the Rose Bowl to championship boxing matches. If he’s not talking sports, he’s hovering over his grill. He is married to an amazing woman, Kim, and they have a dog that barks when Greg yells at the TV during games.