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.
We are still in the recruiting dead period which states that it’s not allowed for coaches to make in-person recruiting contacts or evaluations on-campus or off-campus. Official and unofficial visits are banned right now too. The contact period will open back up Thursday, Jan. 16.
Nebraska signed 23 new players in December from the high school and junior college ranks. The recruiting class finished with a big flurry that saw the Huskers receive 10 commitments from Dec. 11-Dec. 18. It was a productive early signing period.
The Huskers currently have two roster slots available for new additions. Because of that we got this question a lot in our most recent Hail Varsity mailbag, which I saved to answer now.
Could Nebraska get any new commits in the later signing period and who is available? (@HuskerNation540)
The Huskers could add players between the contact period opening back up and the traditional signing date on Feb. 5. I am not sure how likely that is at the moment. The biggest reason is that there isn’t a glaring need. The staff did a nice job of filling needs on the roster when looking at the way the class finished. It might make more sense to hold those two spots for transfers as the portal continues to heat up. It could also be wise to go through winter conditioning and spring ball to see what they have before adding anyone else.
If Nebraska wanted to continue adding to the roster though, there are two positions I would look at. The first is defensive end. There will be no scholarship freshman defensive ends on the team as it stands now. Both Nusi Malani (6-6, 255) and Tanoa Togiai (6-7, 265) are defensive end prospects to watch. Both have already taken official visits to Nebraska. We may know more about their remaining interest in Nebraska once in-home visits are allowed again.
The second position I’d explore is kicker. The Huskers cannot go through 2020 with the same uncertainty and uneven play at kicker. A graduate transfer scholarship kicker would not be the most headline grabbing move but it could provide a big benefit for a team that may play in a lot of close games again next season. The team could see how things play out through the spring with this position too. Junior college kicker Chase Contreraz is enrolling at Nebraska as a walk on. He could help ease the kicking pains. Matt Waldoch will get a chance to show that he can continue to be counted on. We will also see what happens with Barret Pickering. Is he healthy and ready to bounce back?
The more you think about it, there are a lot of questions and moving parts on what happens with those final two spots. The team also has to be conservative with how many official visitors it hosts. They will want to save official visits for juniors who want to take early official visits. There is also the possibility of a wild card addition that could be a best talent available type. We will know more soon but right now there are more questions than answers.
>> A very cool moment happened for the Hutmacher family this weekend when Noah got his first varsity championship alongside his brother.
Congrats @Spider_Monkey04 on your first varsity championship. So happy you got to win it with @ThePolarBear605, even better the team place first too. @joe_hutmacher #proudmom #hardwork #brothers pic.twitter.com/qfCeUonsrg
— Laura Hutmacher (@laurahutmacher) January 5, 2020
>> Huskers priority 2021 outside linebacker target TJ Bollers posted his junior highlights on Sunday.
>> Huskers running back signee Sevion Morrison picked up another honor as he concluded his high school career.
1st team RB 👿 https://t.co/welQukIT8m
— Sevion morrison ⚡️ (@SevyMorrison28) January 5, 2020
>> Santino Marucci, one of Nebraska’s 2021 quarterback targets, can be seen here getting some work at camp. Marucci will be back in Lincoln this month for Junior Day.
Working some ball placement…🔥🔥🔥 pic.twitter.com/clP28wtTB3
— Santino Marucci (@santinomarucci) January 5, 2020
>> As Washington High School coach Chad Stadem explained to Hail Varsity (Premium), the Huskers are getting a dynamic player in 4-star linebacker Randolph Kpai.
>> Kate Cain powered the Huskers past No. 24 Minnesota on Saturday night.
>> Jacob Padilla has your Metro Holiday All-Tournament teams after he took in all the action.
>> Future Huskers Turner Corcoran and Keyshawn Greene played well at the All-American Bowl on Saturday.
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.