This weekend Nebraska will have a number of official visitors on campus for the Northern Illinois game.
One of the visitors will be 3-star outside linebacker prospect David Alston. The Huskers have been high on Alston for some time now and it will not be his first visit to Lincoln. He came for a 12-hour unofficial visit over the summer and enjoyed his time in Lincoln.
Alston plays defensive end for Woodbury High School in Saint Paul, Minnesota, but the Huskers are looking at him to play outside linebacker in Bob Diaco’s 3-4 defense. I spoke with his coach Andy Hill, who spoke highly of Alston’s versatility.
“We played him as a strong safety for most of his sophomore year knowing it wasn't his natural position, and knowing that we were going to move him to defensive end as a junior, but to get him the experience of playing in space," Hill said. "His greatest strength is his ability to rush the passer – for being long he is pretty powerful.
"The only hindrance is that as a defensive end teams can choose to double- or triple-team him, which often happens, but opening opportunities for other guys to make plays. Or they run/roll out away from him. He covers ground quickly, so that doesn't always work, but we don't get too many opponents who let their quarterback take a traditional 5-step drop.”
So I took a look at Alston’s film as a defensive end and noticed right away that he has a good knack for reading and reacting to plays. Alston plays well with his hands at the point of attack and sheds blockers well. That’s a skill needed to play 3-4 outside linebacker at the college level.
Alston is a very smart kid. He has high test scores and is in a dual-enrollment program that will allow him to enter college with a good deal of college credits. His intelligence will allow him to pick up schemes and concepts quickly and helps his read and react ability as shown on this play.
Based on what else I’m hearing around Alston’s recruitment, I feel comfortable making the prediction for him to end up in the Nebraska recruiting class. A great official visit this weekend should seal the deal.
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.