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.
Nebraska’s defense during the 2021 season was the bright spot in a difficult year. It’s hard to argue that side of the ball hasn’t improved yearly during coach Scott Frost’s tenure. It doesn’t appear that the team is resting on its laurels this offseason. The secondary needed to be addressed. It’s one of the question marks heading into next season.
Star cornerback Cam Taylor-Britt declared for the NFL Draft. Taylor-Britt was one of the big recruiting and development wins of the Frost era so far. He’s not the only high-profile loss from the defensive backfield. Super senior starting safeties Deontai Williams and Marquel Dismuke are out of eligibility. The pair played a lot of football for the Huskers during their time in Lincoln. To ease the losses at safety the Huskers have been grooming Myles Farmer for a while now. Starting cornerback Quinton Newsome returns in the 2022 season too.
The Huskers have two starting spots up for grabs in defensive backs coach Travis Fisher’s room for next season. Fisher has been hot on the recruiting trail recently. Three of the last four class of 2022 additions have been defensive backs. Jalil Martin joined the class in November. Malcolm Hartzog pledged to the Huskers in early December. New Jersey 4-star defensive back Jaeden Gould committed to Nebraska on Dec. 14. The team has been aggressive in adding transfers, too. Arizona State transfer defensive back Tommi Hill picked the Huskers on Dec. 13. Hutchinson Community College safety DeShon Singleton committed on Dec. 14.
Fisher has operated in the shadows once again to deliver more talent to the Huskers’ roster. He’s bringing an intriguing mix of players into the program. Some can can play right away. Others will be developed for down the line. Several of the players who committed to Nebraska recently are candidates to see playing time in 2022. That has to put the players on the roster on notice. The Huskers are facing an urgent offseason. This coaching staff is running out of time to get things fixed. The defensive back room could have rested on the development skills of Fisher. Instead the group is pushing things forward with new competition.
Farmer and Newsome are poised to become leaders in the room but even their spots won’t be handed to them. The newcomers join up and coming players like Marques Buford. He’s a player champing at the bit to get more playing time. There is also intrigue with Tamon Lynum and Koby Bretz next season. We’ll see if Tyreke Johnson can consistently get in the mix next season, too
There is another key part of the additions to the defensive back room. They are potential players to contribute to Nebraska’s special teams. Hartzog in particular could help Nebraska in the return game. Fisher has said in the past that he likes his guys on special teams to help the team. The Huskers could end up with a nice mix of players to choose from in the 2022 season. The competition should be fun in the weight room this winter and during spring football.
>> Former Husker target Domonique Orange is heading to Iowa State.
— Domonique Orange (@OrangeDomonique) December 14, 2021
>> Huskers defensive back commit Jaeden Gould picked up a cool honor on Monday night.
🏈 JSZ All-Zone Non-Public Team selection DB: Jaeden Gould (@JaedenGould5)
One of NJ’s most sought after defensive talents made the switch from CB to S and the college offers have poured in!
— Jersey Sports Zone (@JSZ_Sports) December 13, 2021
>> Olaus Alinen, a 2023 offensive line target, was invited to the Under Armour All-America Game.
— Olaus Alinen (@alinen_olaus) December 14, 2021
>> The Huskers offered 5-star 2022 defensive back Jacoby Mathews on Tuesday.
— 𝑴₂𝑵𝑬𝒀 (@iamjacobym) December 14, 2021
>> I’ve got five burning questions (Premium) for Nebraska’s early signing day including asking when will we know more about the quarterback situation.
>> The Huskers landed JUCO defensive back DeShon Singleton on Tuesday.
>> Shawn Hardy II and Blaise Gunnerson caught the coaching staff’s attention (Premium) while earning postseason awards.
>> Mickey Joseph joined ‘Sports Nightly’ to talk Nebraska football, his receivers and more.
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.