Nebraska Football Wide Receiver Oliver Martin Running Against Illinois
Photo Credit: John Peterson

Nebraska Recruiting: Exploring Attrition Management and Talent Acquisition for the Huskers

May 17, 2021

Recruiting never stops and it’s easy to miss the top stories day-to-day. Recruiting analyst Greg Smith recaps all things Nebraska recruiting news, analysis and more so you never miss a thing.


The questions never stop in the recruiting world. No matter what time of year it is, there is always something to talk about so we have been taking reader and listener suggestions on questions. I then answer the questions in a quick video.

This week’s topic comes from a discussion being had in response to last week’s video. That video tackled how much stock to place in recruiting rankings. A commenter said that the rankings matter less and less. That’s because half will transfer anyway. He also added that the sweet spot for Nebraska is the walk-on program.

The discussion around this topic is an interesting one. In a way the commenter was correct, just not in the way that he thought. Half of Nebraska’s recruiting classes don’t transfer. A total of 25 players have transferred out of Nebraska including the transition class of 2018. If you take out the transition year players its 14 players that have left the Huskers early. Five of those were from the 2020 class and they left during the pandemic. Even with explanations of how we got to that much attrition the fact is that can still create roster holes.

The good thing for the Huskers is that they’ve been able to find creative ways to add talent to the roster to help with that. A prime example of that is wide receiver. Nebraska has lost its entire 2019 class of wideouts. That might typically cause panic for the 2021 season. It’s not. That’s because the Huskers have continued to bring in receivers. They’ve done it the traditional way with high school and JUCO recruiting. Players like Oliver Martin and Levi Falck are contributing as walk-ons. Samari Touré is a potential NFL wide receiver that was added as a transfer.

The Huskers like everyone else in college football have to manage attrition. The program would like to have less attrition. Husker offensive line coach Greg Austin has his own ideas on that.

“The challenge is puzzling it, but then also the challenge is making sure the guys understand where their value is,” Austin said. “When you’ve got that many guys that can play for you, we live in a world now where guys can transfer at free will, so you’ve got to recruit them while they’re here as you’re coaching them. You always have to make sure you’re being personable and doing things with them to make them feel valued.”

But the fact is that is the age of the transfer portal it’s going to happen. The best thing Nebraska can do aside from keeping those players is to be flexible when it comes to adding talent to the team. The program is actually ahead of the game in that team building area.

Now it just needs to all come together on the field. That way Nebraska can get back to a bowl game for the first time since the 2016 season.

Recruit Watch

>> The Huskers are in the top eight for Arkansas defensive lineman Nicholas Davillier.

>> Huskers defensive back target James Monds III released his spring game highlights on Sunday night.

>> Nebraska 2022 wide receiver target Jacob Bostick is happy to be back on the track and doing well.

ICYMI

>> The 2021 season is critical for Husker offensive positions in transition (Premium) as I wrote on Monday.

>> Derek Peterson’s latest column centers on defensive tackle Damion Daniels who is a potential difference maker for Nebraska.

>> Incoming Husker Lindsay Krause capped her high school career (Premium) with a club national championship.

>> Jacob Padilla and Damon Benning are back with another installment of the Nebraska Preps Postgame show.

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