There were no commits this last week but that doesn’t mean things weren’t plenty busy on the recruiting trail for Nebraska. I did take a look this week at who could be the next commit for the 2019 class. The staff is still out around the country evaluating prospects and giving out scholarship offers. We’ve seen pretty much every corner of the country touched by the staff as their 2020 board is really being set this month.
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
>>Earlier in the week, I caught up with 4-star JUCO linebacker Lakia Henry who is scheduled to make his way to Lincoln today. He likes that Nebraska is showing that he is a big priority for them and is excited to see the facilities plus be around the Nebraska staff. There will be stiff competition from Tennessee, Texas A&M and Alabama but a good visit could put the Huskers right in the mix.
>>Next week the first batch of summer arrivals from the 2018 recruiting class will make their way to campus. Miles Jones, Cam Jurgens, Jaron Woodyard and possibly Cam Taylor will be the first to report to Lincoln. It’s always more difficult than people think to come in during the summer and contribute in the fall but a couple of those players are expected to do just that. Woodyard is a very safe bet to see significant snaps this season and Jones has been mentioned the most as an impact freshman by the coaching staff this spring. The next two weeks after that is when the rest of the class will be in Lincoln except for Maurice Washington and Willie Canty.
>>On Wednesday, Huskers defensive coordinator Erik Chinander made his way through Virginia high schools and a few of the top prospects in the state in the 2020 class came away with offers from Nebraska. I caught up with all three of them to get their impressions of the Nebraska offer.
First, 4-star athlete Nehki Meredith from Bishop Sullivan Catholic High School in Viriginia Beach, Virginia, says that his head coach told him that Nebraska has liked him for a while before Chinander went to the school on Wednesday. Meredith’s first impression of seeing Chinander was that he seems very chill and about business. When asked about his knowledge of the staff he said
“Yeah, UCF had a great season. They are going to have this team (Nebraska) coached up very well.”
Meredith also holds offers from Auburn, Florida State and Penn State among others.
>>Next is unrated 2020 cornerback Keontae Jenkins from Frank W. Cox High School in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Jenkins said he’s known of the staff since they were at UCF. I asked him about his thoughts on the staff’s time at UCF and he lit up.
“It was extraordinary what they did," Jenkins said. "Chinander had a great defense, he is a great defensive coordinator. That combined with Scott Frost explosive offense made a successful team and they had a perfect season.”
Jenkins says that he loves playing cornerback because of the swag that comes with it and the plays you get to make. He’s open to all schools right now. He holds offers from Florida State, Penn State, Tennessee and Virginia Tech among others.
>> The last 2020 prospect from Virginia that I spoke with is 3-star ATH KeAndre Lambert from Maury High School in Norfolk, Virginia. Lambert says he caught a good vibe from Chinander being in his school and is planning to learn more about Nebraska. He is already a national recruit with offers from Michigan, Clemson, South Carolina, Virginia Tech, Florida, Tennessee, Nebraska and a few others.
>>Something that can’t be missed with that Virginia trio that I spoke with is the quality of offers they already have as sophomores. Nebraska is smart to get in early because when Michigan, Clemson, Florida State, Tennessee and other schools of that caliber are already involved the players tend to become national recruits. So far Nebraska is doing a good job of getting out in front of top prospects in the 2020 class.
>>Yesterday, one of the most intriguing offers I’ve seen recently for the 2020 class went out to quarterback Logan Smothers from Athens, Alabama. The dual-threat (6-2, 180) has very impressive athleticism on display when you watch his film. Mario Verduzco swung through his school recently and I caught up with Smothers afterwards where I asked him about his thoughts on Coach Verdu coming by.
“They came here to visit last week and talked to our defensive coordinator," Smothers said. "Coach Verdu got to see me work out. I had a lot of interest in Nebraska already so it was cool to get to see him here.”
When I asked what got him interested in Nebraska, he chuckled and said “the offense, first off all. Plus, Coach Frost."
The offense Smothers runs at Athens High School is similar to what the Huskers now run and he’s a natural dual-threat quarterback. Smothers told me since he holds a Nebraska offer now, he definitely wants to come to a camp this summer. He’s looking for a good coaching staff that can develop him as a player and a person overall.
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.