Nebraska Recruiting: Barrett Ruud Starting to Make His Mark on ILBs
Photo Credit: John S. Peterson

Nebraska Recruiting: Talking With Nebraska’s New Tight End Offer

October 23, 2018

On Monday, Nebraska offered a scholarship to 2020 tight end Jonathan Odom‍ from Jesuit High School in Tampa, Florida. 

I caught up with Odom to get his thoughts on getting the offer, where his recruitment stands now and when he might take a visit to Lincoln.

Here is the full Q&A we had:

What was your initial reaction on the offer from Nebraska?

It was great. I was in class actually; my last period of school and I saw Coach [Barrett] Ruud texted me a DM on Twitter asking me to give him a shout. So, I called him, we got to talking, had a really good conversation. He has a good background in Tampa which I thought was pretty cool. He told me that I had an offer from Nebraska. I was pretty stoked about that. Coach Frost did amazing things at UCF and he’s bringing amazing things to the program up there. It’s pretty exciting.”

How long have you been talking to the staff?

“Not a long time actually. I think I saw him follow me on Twitter and stuff like that. I think a year ago or maybe a couple months ago I sent my film to one of the coaches. He said thanks and not much happened since then. It was kind of out of the blue, I’m kind of new to this whole recruiting thing. These offers that just come out of the blue and you aren’t really expecting it. They are under the radar and all of a sudden one day they want to offer you. It’s a pretty amazing thing.”

How does it make you feel when teams know about you and want you to be part of their program?

“It makes you feel great just to know that some of the best programs in the nation want me to come play at the school. It’s something I’m only going to live through once in my life so I want to cherish it. It’s pretty amazing, man.”

Who are some of the other schools who have offered or are talking about offering?

“My first offer was Vanderbilt which was pretty crazy how that came about. I wasn’t really expecting my first offer to be from an SEC school. That was also out of the blue, pretty much the same exact thing that happened with Nebraska. They offered me and that was amazing. Same thing with Appalachian State who offered me. Then Nebraska is my third offer. It’s all happening quick. A month ago, I was offer-less. One month you are like ‘oh I don’t have any offers’ and a month later it’s like ‘what just happened?’"

I’ve been talking to Georgia Tech, Arkansas, Rutgers a little bit, UNC. I’m just building relationships with some of these coaches, it’s pretty cool.” 

How would you describe the relationship with the Nebraska staff so far?

“Oh, they are great. Having a lot of Florida guys up there, I didn’t really know that until we got to talking. Since Frost coached at UCF down in Florida and Ruud he’s been in Tampa, my area. He played at Tampa Bay where my dad played. It’s a great connection I have with those guys, it’s a great staff. I can’t wait to get up there and take a visit. To see the place and the surroundings. I’m sure it will be a great time”

Did your dad know coach Ruud?

“They didn’t really know each other. My dad knew of him around Tampa. I think he knew of him because he was in some sort of business with someone in my neighborhood. He seems like a great guy and stuff like that. It’s pretty cool how small the world is. How far that school is from Tampa, Florida, and us all knowing each other is crazy.”

Visit planned this season or after the season?

“I was talking with my family last night and we are going to try to come up to the Illinois or Michigan State game. It’s kind of based on the start times because it’s a farther flight. I tried to do the same when I visited Vanderbilt. The NCAA doesn’t really release times until a week or two prior to the game. I won’t be able to make a 12 o’clock game up in Nebraska. If it’s a night game or later in the day I can make it to one of those games. I want to be able to enjoy a little bit before the game and stay around until Sunday.”

What are some things are you most looking for in a school?

“Starting off with athletics, I want to be able to contribute early on. A place I can compete for a starting position as a freshman. I want to make a difference whereever I go. I want to go to a school that uses their tight ends in a pro-style way. Flexed out sometimes, hand in ground, can block, catch passes and be versatile. That type of offense. I want to play somewhere where I feel like the coaches want the best for me at the same time. 

Switching over to academics, if I get hurt I want to be able to enjoy the college I’m going to. That’s something I think Nebraska offers. A lot of these schools don’t offer that but some do. It’s something that when I take visits, I really look for. The area, what is there to do? I might end up living there for four years so I look at that where ever I go beyond the academic and athletic standpoint.”

Recruit Watch

>>One prospect Nebraska had some interest in is off the board. 4-star ATH Peyton Powell from Odessa, Texas, joined the Longhorns today.

>>Congrats to Brady Danielson for breaking JJ Schulz receiving records at York. 


>>The latest Lo-Down takes you through a day in the life of a volleyball player.

>>Now that Adrian Martinez is firing, Nebraska isn’t scared of any team in the conference.

>>There were new Blackshirts handed out including one in the secondary to a player who battled adversity.

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