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Nebraska coach during practice
Photo Credit: Greg Smith

Nebraska Recruiting: Fisher Sheds Light on Difficulty Keeping Players in Strange Year

December 08, 2020

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 transfers out of Nebraska’s program this year have brought up a lot of questions. We don’t always get answers to some of those questions. Coaches and players that remain would prefer to just move on. The next man up mentality in sports is real and one that serves teams well when they need to adjust on the fly.

It’s hard to ignore that Nebraska has had five players from the 2020 recruiting class leave the program. Even more focus is placed on that when each is from Florida. Henry Gray, Jaiden Francois, Keyshawn Greene, Marcus Fleming and Ronald Delency all spent less than a year in Lincoln before going back home. Defensive backs coach Travis Fisher was the primary recruiter on each player. The subject of transfers came up during media availability with Fisher on Tuesday.

Fisher doesn’t want to change how he recruits, noting that he’s going to be an aggressive recruiter. He did try to place himself in the shoes of the young men. Maybe had a hard time adjusting to college life in a year no one expected.

“This year 2020 has been, it’s been a tough year. I’m gonna keep preaching it and not excuse for anything, but it’s been a tough year,” Fisher said. “I can just imagine sometimes different things come at different times with kids and different people in their ear left and right. You don’t get a chance to see things for yourself, you’re not running out at Memorial Stadium in front of 100,000 fans going crazy that all know you. They don’t get the chance to have a campus life.”

Fisher thinks that players could also hear negative things from different people. There are a lot of factors that go into why a player would leave a school so early. It’s unfortunate to the coach that a lot of the ones who have left Nebraska happen to be from the same area. Fisher made another point that needs to be highlighted. The increase in transfers is not just happening at Nebraska.

“It’s throughout the whole country. It’s not just Nebraska,” Fisher said. “But I just think the transfer portal is giving a lot of the young kids a way to opt out of this thing. It’s not doing any of them any good really to be honest with you. That’s just across the country looking at it. A lot of them are young, a lot of the kids are freshmen (and) 2020 doesn’t help it being in the quarantine stage and the rules and all that doesn’t help.

“There is a toughness part of it, sticking through it, the toughness of being a freshman. Everybody’s been a freshman at some point so it is tough, 2020 and the things that we have overcome so far has been an added piece to it. It’s very sad to see a lot of young men leave something so great because they don’t know. It’s very sad to see but all you can do is wish them the best and hope for the best for them.”

There is no one size fits all answer to why Nebraska has lost a handful of players who happen to be from the same state. It’s a complex situation made worse by a tough year. The Huskers like many teams around the country have to figure it out on the fly. The issue of players diving into the transfer portal isn’t going away any time soon.

Recruit Watch

>> Huskers defensive back commit Marques Buford is all ready to sign his letter of intent next week.

>> Elkhorn South center Isaac Zatechka picked up a preferred walk-on offer from Missouri on Monday night.

>> Creighton Prep defensive back Tobey Okafor will be heading to UNK to play college football.


>> In the latest episode of the Straight Up Breakdown podcast Jay Foreman and I discuss why embracing the process is the next step for Nebraska football.

>> Minnesota expects to play this weekend and Nebraska expects the Gophers to be more than prepared.

>> The Husker coaches and players credit a mixed bag for the offensive progress recently.

>> It’s mission accomplished since Brenden Jaimes wanted to be part of Nebraska’s great offensive line tradition, writes Derek Peterson.

>> Doc Sadler talked defense, Derrick Walker and handling schedule issues last night.

>> Check out Fred Hoiberg talk Nebraska’s canceled game, upcoming schedule and more.

>> The Huskers are quite happy to have Dedrick Mills back ahead of the matchup with Minnesota.

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