Now that the 2018 recruiting class is in the books, it’s time to start turning the page to the class of 2019. There will be plenty of great storylines during this recruiting cycle including the amount of talent in the “500-mile radius” and the impact of Nebraska recruiting junior colleges again.
If you aren’t familiar the Greg’s Guys list is my top 10 players in the class based on Nebraska’s needs, how a player fits in the scheme and talent. The player also needs to be interested in the Huskers. I’ve made an adjustment from last year since this staff recruits junior college prospects so you’ll see them included this year. Also keep in mind Nebraska has two commitments from athlete Garrett Snodgrass and defensive end Garrett Nelson, so they won’t be on the list.
The list is always fluid and that’s what makes it fun!
1. QB Max Duggan (Council Bluffs, Iowa)
If you have seen anything I’ve written about Duggan, it is no surprise he is the initial top guy on this list. When I saw him play in person last October, I wrote that he should be Nebraska’s top 2019 target and nothing has changed my mind. In fact, Nebraska’s offense under Frost suits Duggan better, and is similar to what he runs at Lewis Central. Duggan wants to make a decision in the spring on where he will go to college.
2. DE Chester Graves (Council Bluffs, Iowa)
Nebraska has picked the perfect time to get back in the game of junior college recruiting. Not only does Iowa Western head coach Scott Strohmeier have an excellent program that routinely produces Division I talent, he is also friends with Scott Frost and defensive coordinator Erik Chinander. Graves, originally an Ole Miss commit, is open to any school and will likely be the top 2019 player in the junior college ranks. He’s also plays a position of need for 2019.
3. LB Owen Pappoe (Loganville, Georgia)
The talented linebacker has been on Husker fan's radar for over a year now, and he really got introduced to the fans when he came to the Friday Night Lights camp as a junior where he looked like he was already in college. Pappoe attends that same high school that current Huskers Mo Barry and Breon Dixon attended. Nebraska is squarely in the mix to steal a star out of Georgia.
4. LB Nick Henrich (Omaha, Nebraska)
Henrich is on track to be one of the most heavily recruited players from Nebraska in a long time. The playmaking linebacker (6-4, 200) has all the tools you look for in a linebacker. He's the kind of guy you build your defense around. His instincts, speed and tackling ability are second to none. Henrich totaled 115 tackles, 31.5 tackles for loss and 11 sacks during his junior season. He’s become a national recruit and his profile should continue to grow.
5. OL Danielson Ike (Kansas City, Missouri)
Ike is a monster (6-6, 315) offensive tackle who has not been playing football very long. Originally from Nigeria, he came to the United States to play basketball in 2015, but his size quickly sent him to the football field. He is hearing from the in-state school (Missouri), but expect Nebraska to make a strong push for the Rockhurst High School prospect.
6. ATH Isaiah Williams (St. Louis, Missouri)
Every school in the country knows about Williams, who is an electric dual-threat quarterback for powerhouse Trinity Catholic in St. Louis. There are schools recruiting him at quarterback, running back, wide receiver and defensive back at the next level. He has more than 50 offers already and for good reason. He is one of the top players in the country.
7. DE Marcus Hicks (Wichita, Kansas)
At his size (6-5, 230) Hicks has the speed to turn into a pass rushing outside linebacker and the size to add weight and become a defensive end in college. He and his father have already taken in a game at Nebraska. The new staff has made him a top priority as well. He racked up 63 tackles, 19.5 tackles for loss and 10 sacks as a junior.
8. RB Rahmir Johnson (Oradell, New Jersey)
The speedy running back has double-digit offers at this point with more to come. He is also a track star where he participates in the 100, 200, 400, long jump and high jump. He’s the type of terrific athlete that Frost and offensive coordinator Troy Walters covet in this offense. He attends the same high school as 2018 target Javontae Jean-Baptiste.
9. TE Chris Hickman (Omaha, Nebraska)
Omaha Burke will be flooded with college coaches this summer and fall to check out Hickman. He has a great frame (6-6, 195) to grow into a rush defensive end or be a hybrid tight end in college. My feeling is that if you created a player to play tight end in Frost’s offense, it would be Hickman. He is just scratching the surface of how good he can be which is scary for opposing teams.
10. OL Ira Henry (St. Louis, Missouri)
Henry also plays for Trinity Catholic in St. Louis and is also one of the top players in the region at his position. He projects as a guard in college and has the size (6-5, 320) to be an absolute mauler in the Big Ten. The Huskers need to set up shop in St. Louis to nab a few of these big-time players going forward.
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.