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.
Since we are deep into the stretch run to the early signing period that opens up Dec. 19, I’ve been thinking about some of the overall themes of this recruiting cycle and things that have seemed to come up repeatedly. For example, it was said over and over by recruits that visited Lincoln during the season that the fan support at Memorial Stadium was unmatched around the county.
One of the other things that came up quite a bit when talking to prospects was how down to earth and relatable the coaching staff at Nebraska is. When I spoke with Nebraska outside linebacker commit Garrett Nelson for a different story, he talked to me about what makes this staff unique.
“I haven’t been coached by them yet but they seem more like friends and family than coaches,” Nelson said. “They are really down to earth guys, I feel like I’ve known them my whole life. They are so easy to talk to and get along with. I can’t say anything bad about them. I miss them a lot since they left (from an in-home visit) actually. I can’t really say enough good things about them. The coaches are incredible. We are going to have a lot of fun in the upcoming years.”
As soon as Nelson said that, it reminded me of a quote from running backs coach and junior college recruiting coordinator Ryan Held back in November. He was talking about Nebraska’s recruiting pitch to prospects.
“We’re selling playing in schemes that are fun to play in with coaches that will treat you right and love you up,” Held said. “We are going to discipline you when we need to but we are not the group that will be out that cussing you out and downgrading you and everything. People see that at the end of the day. We aren’t heckle and jeckle. You see one thing [in recruiting process] and then you show up and we are different. The word gets out on that if you are that way. We don’t operate like that and it’s been a winning edge for us. We like where we are recruiting wise, we have to finish. We have to keep infiltrating players into this program that create competition, kids that love football and that’ll help us get to where we want to get to.”
Even though Nebraska currently sits at 22 commits in the 2019 recruiting class, it is closing time as we inch closer to Dec. 19. The staff’s approach has a chance to be validated in a big way with a couple of key targets making their college decisions soon.
>> Speaking of Nelson, he took his official visit this weekend and had a good time.
— Garrett Nelson (@gnelson763) December 10, 2018
>> Nebraska wide receiver commit Darien Chase released his senior highlights. He’s fresh off a state championship.
>> One of Nebraska’s top remaining targets on the defensive line, Smith Vilbert, took a trip to Penn State this weekend. The Huskers would love the chance to host him for a visit.
>> Nebraska defensive back target Jamel Starks will be taking an official visit to West Virginia this weekend.
— Jamel Starks (@jamel_starks) December 10, 2018
>> Nebraska walk-on kicker Dylan Jorgensen’s dad Dustin sent me this picture of all the walk-on commits from Lincoln Southwest after Nick Leader joined the class last night.
>> We previewed the next issue of Hail Varsity magazine featuring Erin Sorensen’s story on Tre Neal.
>> Jacob Padilla’s high school hoops roundup is back and looks at Akol Arop, who is leading the Junior Jays.
>> I caught up with Huskers offensive line commit Matthew Anderson who raved about his official visit experience. (Premium)
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.