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Big Red Recon: Huskers Eying Good News to Start New Year

January 01, 2021

Happy New Year, Huskers!

We made it through 2020 and are on to hopefully bigger and brighter things in the new year. The Huskers are into the offseason now and things are mostly quiet. The team is recharging before winter conditioning begins. That’s right around the corner given the new semester starts in Lincoln on Jan. 25. But before then, there are still plenty of questions that need to be answered. There could be more additions to the recruiting class and some senior decisions are looming.

Let’s get to the Recon.

Husker Commits

Koby Bretz‍, Defensive Back, Omaha, Nebraska

Ru’Quan Buckley, Defensive Lineman, Wyoming, Michigan

Marques Buford‍, Defensive Back, Cedar Hill, Texas

James Carnie‍, Tight End, Firth, Nebraska

Gabe Ervin‍, Running Back, Buford, Georgia

Thomas Fidone‍, Tight End, Council Bluffs, Iowa

Mikai Gbayor‍, Linebacker, Irvington, New Jersey

Kamonté Grimes‍, Wide Receiver, Naples, Florida

Heinrich Haarberg‍, Quarterback, Kearney, Nebraska

Shawn Hardy‍, Wide Receiver, Kingsland, Georgia

Randolph Kpai‍, Inside Linebacker, Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Henry Lutovsky‍, Offensive Lineman, Mount Pleasant, Iowa

Seth Malcom‍, Inside Linebacker, Tabor, Iowa

Latrell Neville‍, Wide Receiver, Houston, Texas

Patrick Payton‍, Outside Linebacker, Miami, Florida

Teddy Prochazka‍, Offensive Lineman, Elkhorn, Nebraska

AJ Rollins‍, Tight End, Omaha, Nebraska

Jailen Weaver, defensive lineman, Antioch, California

Lardarius Webb‍, Defensive Back, Jackson, Mississippi

Malik Williams‍, Defensive Back, Buford, Georgia

Branson Yager‍, Offensive Lineman, Grantsville, Utah

2021 Needs

QB 0 DL 1
RB 0 MLB 0
WR 0 OLB 1
TE 0 DB 1
OL 0 K/P 0

The Recon:

>> Things have been slow for Nebraska on returning seniors so far. There are still plenty of decisions that need to be made though. The big one on offense is if running back Dedrick Mills will return. The case can be made either way with Mills and I think the decision will be difficult. Defense is where Nebraska could get a huge boost. The potential is there for a senior to return at each level of the defense. Ben Stille, Will Honas, JoJo Domann, Marquel Dismuke and Deontai Williams are all considering returning, according to sources. That doesn’t mean each will come back but the Huskers have a chance to get some real punch back for 2021.

>> The Huskers will be involved with a couple announcements this Saturday during the All-American Game festivities. California defensive back Ceyair Wright has been a long-time target for the Huskers. He may end up having a Husker hat on the table but I don’t expect him to pick anyone but USC. The Huskers were really hurt in that recruitment by not getting him to Lincoln for a visit.

I do still feel good about Nebraska’s chances of landing Hawaii linebacker Wynden Ho’ohuli. If Ho’ohuli commits to the Huskers he would be the first Hawaii native to sign with the team since the 1990s. He’s the number one player in Hawaii this cycle and would represent a major coup for defensive line coach Tony Tuioti. Not being able to visit campus but building a relationship with the staff that is strong enough to pick the Huskers would say good things for Nebraska. Remember what Tuioti said recently about gaining traction with Polynesian recruiting.

“The biggest part in recruiting is making sure there is a relationship built. A trust built between player and coach but also the parents,” Tuioti said. “I think with Coach Frost it’s awesome recruiting with him. It’s awesome recruiting with coach Chinander too. They do a great job of building with the player and the family.

“I think most of the kids that we are talking to right now that have Polynesian ties, kids from Hawaii, they are starting to see what Coach Frost is building here. They like it. I think we have good traction with the kids and hopefully when it comes to signing day we can have some that will be part of our program.”

>> Even though the Huskers are still working on the 2021 recruiting cycle, I am starting to wonder about the 2022 cycle. Yes, it’s very early but there is no time like the present for Nebraska to pick up steam. There are some strong candidates for first commit of cycle but the 2022 is where we are seeing the effect of no visits this season. Purdue has the most commits in the Big Ten West for 2022 with a pair. Ohio State already has nine, Penn State has seven and Michigan five. Nebraska typically gets its commits in bunches so there will probably be a run of commits when the first one pops but Nebraska does have some ground to make up early on in the conference. There are a few in-state players like Kaden Helms and Ernest Hausmann who could be early commits. Or linebacker Gavin Meyers from Kansas. The Huskers have also been known to get a commit out of left field.

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