Cameron Pieper is just beginning his journey in the recruiting world, which means he doesn’t have any offers yet. And ‘yet’ is the key word. As Pieper’s spring semester of his junior year marches on, he’s received quite a few requests for game film.
The tight end and long snapper from Lincoln (Neb.) Southwest High School has now received inquiries from Nebraska, Auburn, Notre Dame, Arizona State, Iowa State, Kansas, Northern Iowa, South Dakota, North Dakota State, Wyoming, Doane, Drake and Northwest Missouri State. The list is likely to grow too, especially as Pieper’s senior season gets closer.
As for narrowing that growing list, Pieper has a good idea of what he’s looking for in a school.
“I want to go where I’ll fit in the best,” Pieper said. “I want to be a teacher when I grow up so that’ll factor into it, the academics and everything. I just want to find the right fit for me to be honest. There’s no set place as of right now. I just want to find the right place where I can fit in the best.”
Pieper also has an idea of how he’d like to fit on his future team’s roster. As a tight end and long snapper, Pieper would love to find a place that would allow him to utilize both skills but he’ll understand if it has to be one or the other.
“I would like to play tight end and long snap in college but if it just comes down to long snapping in college, I would be fine with it,” Pieper said. “I would really like to play tight end too but even as I say it, as I go out to colleges I can say I can go out there and be a dual-position threat. I can long snap and I can play tight end. I think that’ll bring me more offers than just saying, ‘Oh, I can only play tight end or long snap.'”
Pieper transferred to Lincoln Southwest from Norris High School after his sophomore year. Seeking the “big school experience,” Pieper immediately found a home that was better suited for him.
“It’s been one of the best moves of my life,” Pieper said.
Now Pieper hopes to make the next best move of his life as he seeks a college to play football. He’s not alone in his journey though. Right alongside him, Pieper has his dad – former Husker walk-on and scout team member Aaron Pieper – to provide advice and guidance. However, Pieper’s dad has made sure that there’s no pressure on his son to go to Nebraska.
“My dad played at Nebraska in the 90s so I’ve kind of always thought about going and playing at Nebraska and following my dad but there’s really no pressure from [my family] right now,” Pieper said. “They’re there to support me and that’s really all they’re there to do.”
And through it all, Pieper has noticed that his dad has begun to let him take the reins. However, he’s still appreciative of the support his dad has provided so far.
“He just tells me how to talk to coaches and how to approach coaches and how to get myself out there and really get started,” Pieper said. “He just helped me get started and I’ve taken over now so I can thank him for that.”
Pieper has gotten a unique look at Nebraska to date though. Thanks to his dad’s friendship with John Parrella, Pieper has had an opportunity to get to know the defensive line coach and the tradition that comes with playing for Nebraska.
“I love Coach Parrella,” Pieper said. “My dad is good friends with him. He’s so easy to get along with and is so easy to approach. I feel welcome at the University of Nebraska. They have a great… I mean, it’s Nebraska. You know their program. It’s so rich in history. It would be so surreal playing for the hometown team too but whatever happens, happens.”
As for whom Pieper would ultimately like to be like, there’s another Husker he has in mind – linebacker (and budding long snapper) Josh Banderas.
“I’m best friends with his little brother Anthony and I hang around Josh,” Pieper said. “I long snap with Josh because Josh is trying to impress NFL coaches with that skill and Josh is pretty good at long snapping. We started long snapping together and he has a tremendous work ethic. He’s an all-around great guy. That’s just who I want to be.”
Pieper doesn’t know what the future holds, but he knows he has some good mentors and role models surrounding him if he ever needs some advice. In the meantime, he’s continuing to put in the work and doing what is needed to continue impressing colleges all across the country.
“I work hard,” Pieper said. “That’s really it. I’m a hard worker. I’ll do whatever it takes to get the job done.”
Erin is the Deputy Editor and Digital Marketing Strategist for Hail Varsity. She has covered Nebraska athletics since 2012, which has included stops at Bleacher Report, Cox Media Group’s Land of 10, and even Hail Varsity (previously from 2012-2017). She has also been featured on the Big Ten Network, NET’s Big Red Wrap-Up, and a varsity of radio shows nationwide. When not covering the Huskers, Erin is probably at Chipotle.