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 in the final stretch run to the early signing period in college football. We are coming off the heels of the 2020 cycle where everything was different. Schools had to find new ways to communicated with prospects and do evaluations. Everyone was ready to put that year behind us. The assumption was that we’d see a flurry of recruiting activity to make up for lost time. We got a mixed bag of that from the Huskers this year.
It’s been a recruiting cycle that is unlike any other that we’ve seen for Nebraska. The majority of the team’s recruiting activity came in the summer. The Huskers gained most of their commitments during that time. It’s also when they were hosting several early official visits. Those visits were built around the Big Red Barbeque event and the Friday Night Lights series. Once the season started that momentum came to a screeching halt.
The Huskers have a lot of things to sell recruits but right at the top of the list is the game day atmosphere. Only two players that were not already committed to the team came for official visits. Outside linebacker Ka’eo Akana is a Boise State commit that took an in-season official visit. He and Jalil Martin entered their official visit weekends not committed to Nebraska. Martin, the defensive back from Chicago, did commit to Nebraska during his visit.
Nebraska has kicked recruiting activity up to another level in the offseason. The first official visit weekend in the offseason was a good one. The Huskers brought in five players for official visits. The team quickly picked up two commitments from that weekend. California defensive end Brodie Tagaloa joined the class on Dec. 5. He was followed quickly by Mississippi defensive back Malcolm Hartzog on Dec. 6. Both are interesting long-term prospects for the Huskers.
Huskers new wide receivers coach Mickey Joseph was busy in Louisiana last week. Joseph extended four offers at top Louisiana high school Lake Charles in one day. That included four-star 2022 running back TreVonte Citizen. Nebraska offered a trio of Louisiana wide receivers that week too. Decoldest Crawford has the best chance to consider the Huskers. Shazz Preston and Omarion Miller also picked up offers. Nebraska generated a lot of buzz that week which got the school in front of new eyes. There was groundwork laid that could pay off in the future.
Nebraska hosted an important mid-week official visitor from the JUCO ranks. The Huskers hosted a huge visit weekend for the final visit weekend before the early signing period. Eight official visitors came to town and so did one unofficial visitor. The Huskers hosted five transfer targets for visits. Three high school prospects and a JUCO target also came to town. Offensive lineman Kevin Williams Jr., quickly committed to the program after visiting unofficially. He was the first player to commit to new offensive line coach Donovan Raiola. The Huskers are poised to land several more commitments from the weekend.
Momentum is building for the Huskers as we head toward Dec. 15. It couldn’t have come at a better time for the program. A morale boost is needed heading into the fifth year of coach Scott Frost.
>> Nebraska added another transfer when Furman kicker/punter Timmy Bleekrode announced he was joining the program. Bleekrode is going on full scholarship.
— Timmy Bleekrode (@Timmybleekrode) December 12, 2021
>> The Huskers hosted transfer defensive back Ryan Stapp for an official visit last weekend. This weekend he committed to Minnesota.
First off I would like to thank God, my family, and the entire Abilene Christian coaching staff and community for helping me get to this point. With that being said I am 110% committed to The University of Minnesota!! RTB!! pic.twitter.com/sVlod4xCEH
— Ryan Stapp 🌴 (@ryanstapp2) December 11, 2021
>> Recent Husker commit Malcolm Hartzog was named MVP of the Mississippi/Alabama All-Star game.
GUESS WHO IS ADDING ANOTHER HARDWARE TO HIS COLLECTION???
— Jeff. Davis County HS (@JDCHS_JAGS) December 11, 2021
>> Papillion La-Vista South wide receiver Tyson Money is heading to Iowa Western to play football.
— 𝓣𝔂𝓼𝓸𝓷 𝓜𝓸𝓷𝓮𝔂 ⚡️ (@TysonMoney3) December 10, 2021
>> Nebraska transfer defensive back offeree MJ Joseph committed to Louisville over the weekend.
— MJ Griffin (@MJGRIFFIN2019) December 12, 2021
>> Transfer offensive lineman Kevin Williams Jr. is eager to work with (Premium) offensive line coach Donovan Raiola.
>> Nebraska’s freshman pins powered No. 10 Nebraska past No. 2 Texas in the regional final.
>> For the first time since 2013 the Nebraska women’s basketball teams has won 10 straight games.
>> Steve Marik took a look at the Pitt matchup with Wake Forest to get hints (Premium) at what Mark Whipple’s offense could look like.
>> Freshman Wilhelm Breidenbach is likely to miss the rest of the season with a leg injury.
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.