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Mailbag: What Has to Happen for Nebraska to Win the West?
Photo Credit: Eric Francis

Nebraska Recruiting: Updates From the Staff’s First Week on the Road

January 17, 2019

The contact period is back in full swing. After hosting a visit weekend that included four top targets, the Nebraska coaching staff is already back on the road. It’s expected that the staff will see wide receiver Charles Njoku, junior college defensive end/outside linebacker Soni Fonua, outside linebacker Steven Parker and cornerback DJ James during their travels this week. 

We will keep a running list each week about the Nebraska’s staff’s travels, providing updates as more information becomes available.

Here is the latest on where Hail Varsity has confirmed the staff is visiting:

Monday Updates

>> The first visit this week seems to have gone to Nebraska’s lone 2020 commit. Shane Smothers, Logan Smothers‍’ dad, confirmed that coach Scott Frost and defensive coordinator Erik Chinander came through the school this morning.

Logan will not be able to make it to Junior Day on Feb. 2 because of a track meet but the family is talking with the staff about coming to Lincoln for a spring practice instead. I’m told that Logan is really looking forward to making another trip to Lincoln, so there isn’t much to worry about there. 

>> Chinander and defensive backs coach Travis Fisher are scheduled for an in-home with DJ James‍ in Spanish Fort, Alabama, on Tuesday. 

>> It looks like running back John Bivens‍ will be getting a visit from Ryan Held on Tuesday. Bivens is still scheduled to take an official to Lincoln this weekend. It’s unclear if this is linked to anything with Dedrick Mills’ status.

>> Defensive line coach Mike Dawson was in the Northeast this morning. Several players got scholarship offers but perhaps the most intrguing one was to Tyler Martin‍, a 2022 linebacker. Martin already stands at 6-foot-2 and 227 pounds and holds scholarships from Michigan, Boston College and others. He told me that he’s “really excited about what is brewing in Lincoln with the Huskers.” Martin also hopes to visit Lincoln in the spring or summer.

>> Sammy Solomon‍, a 2020 defensive tackle from Pennslyvania, told me that defensive line coach Mike Dawson will be through his school on Wednesday. Solomon (6-3, 295) doesn’t hold an offer from the Huskers just yet but said he is “very interested” in Nebraska. More to come from him later in the week.

Tuesday Updates

>> Michael Lockhart‍, a fast-rising defensive end/outside linebacker from Alabama, has rearranged his visit schedule. He was slated to visit Nebraska this weekend but Hail Varsity has learned that he he will not make the trip after all. Lockhart said that he will sit down with his family and plan out the rest of his visits. He visited North Carolina last weekend. 

>> Outside linebackers coach Jovan Dewitt was in Lawrenceville, Georgia tonight conducting an in-home visit with Cornelius Evans. The 2019 outside linebacker doesn’t yet hold an offer yet but he told me that the visit went great and that the staff is discussing having him come out for an official visit. Evans will take an official visit this week to Georgia Tech.

Wednesday Updates

>> Jakob James‍, a 2020 offensive lineman from Cincinatti, Ohio, told me that he got a visit from Ryan Held on Tuesday. James holds over 17 offers at this point, including Michigan, Tennessee and LSU. James and his family are hoping to make it to Junior Day or another time in the spring.  

>> If you remember the Minnesota game, 2020 cornerback T Lee‍ was an unofficial visitor who had a great time and immediately placed Nebraska in his top two. He surprisingly committed to Arizona State a couple weeks after that trip but recently has has been picked up offers from Oregon and Michigan State. I reached out to him to see if he is still hearing from Nebraska and he told me that he does. He would be someone to keep in mind as a flip candidate down the road. 

Thursday Updates

>> Dylan Jordan‍, the fast-rising 2019 outside linebacker from Kansas, received an in-home visit Wednesday night from Erik Chinander, Jovan Dewitt and Ryan Held.

There were some reports that Nebraska had backed off him completely but that does not appear to be the case. I spoke with Jordan Thursday morning and he told me that he believes his official visit to Lincoln is still on for Jan. 25 and he will be heading to TCU, not Auburn this weekend. He also said that the visit with the Husker coaches was a lot of fun and they talked with him and his dad for a couple of hours.

There will surely be more to come on this developing situation.

More to come throughout the week.

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