Greg's Guys | Huskers 2020
Photo Credit: Quentin Lueninghoener

Greg’s Guys: Looking Back at Top Players from the 2021 Recruiting Class

January 05, 2021

All through the recruiting cycle, I put together my list of Greg’s Guys. The top 10 players on my big board for Nebraska based on needs and interest in the program. We are at the end of the line for new 2021 prospects with the majority of players signing in December. Let’s take this opportunity to do something a little different. We are going to look at the top Greg’s Guys from the cycle regardless of where they ended up signing. The list is in no particular order this time around.

Next month we’ll get things started with the 2022 group.

Tight End Thomas Fidone (Council Bluffs, Iowa)

The Huskers’ No. 1 target all cycle long, Fidone is one of the biggest recruiting wins of the Scott Frost era. The Iowa native is the best tight end prospect in the country and a borderline 5-star player. His stock exploded last winter when schools around the country started recruiting him hard. The relationships with Nebraska’s staff and players helped deliver Fidone to Lincoln, where he figures to play early in his career.

Cornerback Avante Dickerson (Omaha, Nebraska)

A blazing fast, lockdown cornerback located in Nebraska isn’t something that come around every cycle. Dickerson did not sign with Minnesota in December despite being committed to them for months. That is going to keep the Huskers interested in pursuing his signature in February. Other schools are also trying to get in the mix but it’s unclear how receptive the Omaha Westside standout is to new pitches.

Quarterback Peter Costelli (Mission Viejo, California)

It feels like quarterback signee Heinrich Haarberg was in the class for a long time. Haarberg joined the class back in May but before things picked up steam with the Kearney native all signs pointed to Costelli being in the class. Standing at 6-foot-3, 205-pounds, the California native is a good passer and runner. He stunned everyone when he committed to Utah and that’s where he signed.

Outside Linebacker TJ Bollers (Tiffin, Iowa)

The Huskers spent a lot of time recruiting the Iowa defender so it was tough to see him commit somewhere else. It was a double whammy when he committed Wisconsin. Nebraska had deep connections to Bollers’ family since defensive coordinator Erik Chinander played with his dad at Iowa. It’s going to be a pain for the Huskers to face Bollers the next few years.

Wide Receiver Keagan Johnson (Bellevue, Nebraska)

The Huskers were quite high on Johnson who is the latest star to come out of Bellevue West. As a Husker legacy a lot of analysts had him pegged for the Huskers but Johnson and his family did their due diligence. He committed to Iowa in May. The Huskers recruited him hard so it will sting having to see him play for rival Iowa during his college career.

Linebacker Wynden Ho’ohuli (Mililani, Hawaii)

The Huskers most recent commit was also one of the most coveted players for the team this cycle. With defensive line coach Tony Tuioti leading the charge, the Huskers were able to land their first player from Hawaii since the 1990s. Winning out for his commitment despite him never being able to visit is a major win for the Huskers staff.

Defensive End Tobechi Okoli (Kansas City, Missouri)

Through this cycle the Huskers didn’t have a lot of names on the defensive line that came up often. A big part of that is the youth and talent on the line already in Lincoln. But one player that the staff was high on that would have made a great fit was Okoli. A stout end (6-5, 250) with his best football ahead of him, Okoli committed to Auburn. Nebraska tried to make a late push after Auburn coach Gus Malzahn was let go but he signed with the Tigers in December.

Outside Linebacker Christian Burkhalter (Spanish Fort, Alabama)

There were very few outside linebackers that Nebraska was linked with more than Burkhalter. He has the look (6-5, 230) of a nice edge rushing prospect. Nebraska was his leader for a long time but he ended up committing to Oregon in a hurry. He later changed his mind and signed with UCLA. The Frost-versus-Chip Kelly battles on the recruiting trail have been interesting so far.

Wide Receiver Latrell Neville (Fresno, Texas)

The Texas wideout has as high of a ceiling as anyone in the Nebraska recruiting class. He’s an athletic, hard-working player that could really shine in the Huskers’ offense. Things really took off between Nebraska and Neville after he backed off a pledge to Virginia Tech back in June. Then he gave the Huskers cause for celebration when he committed on July 4.

Running Back Arudric Estime (Montvale, New Jersey)

The bruising runner from New Jersey was a favorite of mine all cycle. Estime is ready-made for college football standing at 6-foot-1, 215 pounds. It was a huge win for Michigan State when he committed to new coach Mel Tucker. Then three days before signing day Notre Dame offer him. Estime flipped to the Irish on signing day to play for Brian Kelly after racking up 1857 yards and 22 touchdowns in 2020. Nebraska got a good back in Gabe Ervin out of Georgia

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