Hopefully everyone had a great holiday and enjoyed some family time. The bowl season is in full swing now and while the Nebraska coaching staff is taking some time off, there is still work being done. The dust has now settled on the early signing period and the focus has shifted to the February signing date.
Let’s get to the recon.
Matthew Anderson, offensive lineman, Leesville, Lousiana
Brant Banks, defensive end, Houston, Texas
Bryce Benhart, offensive lineman, Lakeville, Minnesota
Desmond Bland, offensive lineman, Yuma, Arizona
Darien Chase, wide receiver, Vancouver, Washington
Myles Farmer, defensive back, Atlanta, Georgia
Jimmy Fritzsche, offensive tackle, Greenville, South Carolina
Jackson Hannah, linebacker, Nashville, Tennesee
Nick Henrich, linebacker, Omaha, Nebraska
Chris Hickman, tight end, Omaha, Nebraska
Rahmir Johnson, running back, Oradell, New Jersey
Michael Lynn, offensive lineman, Greenwood Village, Colorado
Luke McCaffrey, quarterback, Highlands Ranch, Colorado
Dedrick Mills, running back, Garden City, Kansas
Jamie Nance, wide receiver, Blanchard, Oklahoma
Garrett Nelson, defensive end, Scottsbluff, Nebraska
Mosai Newsom, defensive end, Waverly, Iowa
Quinton Newsome, defensive back, Suwanee, Georgia
Ethan Piper, defensive tackle, Norfolk, Nebraska
Ty Robinson, defentive tackle, Gilbert, Arizona
Wandale Robinson, athlete, Frankfort, Kentucky
Garrett Snodgrass, athlete, York, Nebraska
Ronald Thompkins, running back, Loganville, Georgia
Javin Wright, defensive back, Chandler, Arizona
>> The door is not closed on running back Dedrick Mills joining the program. Here is where we stand right now: Junior college transfers actually have until Jan. 15 to sign their letters of intent. Classes start for Nebraska on Jan. 7, but it may still make sense to have Mills sign before Jan. 15 (even if he will not participate in spring practice). The reason why? If he’s signed, other teams can’t swoop in to get Mills to reconsider his decision. As long as he is staying in shape during the winter, running back is a spot that you can come in late and still have an impact.
>> Speaking of running backs, if Mills doesn’t make it to Lincoln until summer, that is great news for the forgotten running back of this class: Rahmir Johnson. If those two are on equal footing in terms of being around the team, learning the playbook and strength and conditioning, then it increases Johnson’s chances of contributing early. This is a storyline worth keeping an eye on.
>> If you haven’t noticed over the last week, Nebraska has offered scholarships to several defenders for the 2019 class that can rush the passer. Linebacker Brandon Mack and JUCO defensive end Soni Fonua were already on the staff’s board but outside linebacker Steven Parker, inside linebacker Eugene Asante, outside linebacker Dylan Jordan and defensive end Mike Lockhart have all picked up offers recently. My understanding is that the Huskers would like to build a large list of pass rushers and work from there instead of just focusing on Mack and Fonua. Once again, this staff does not want to get caught off guard and is looking to build options.
>> When we talk about potential defensive backs that could still be added to the class, don’t forget Tavian Mayo. The Georgia native took an official visit to West Virginia just before the early signing period opened but did not sign with the Mountaineers or anyone. Nebraska and Mayo are still on good terms and other players in the class are still peer recruiting him. Most were surprised when he did not commit to Nebraska after visiting for the Minnesota game. There could still be an opportunity for a match between Nebraska and Mayo.
>> There has been a lot of talk about how that’s the class where Scott Frost and his staff will deliver a top 15 recruiting class. I believe that will happen and the type of prospects the staff seems to be going after reflects that too. On average there seem to be more national type recruits in 2020 that the Huskers are already in on. Combine that with the strong group of players in the 500-mile radius and Nebraska could really be cooking in 2020.
In my opinion, the key factor in all of this will be if the Huskers can put together a good season on the field. A nine-win regular season would do a lot perception-wise for this staff and would convey the message to recruits that this staff could take the next step to championship level football in Lincoln.
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.