Photo Credit: Eric Francis

Nebraska Recruiting: Husker Coaches Going ‘Where the Heat’s At’

November 15, 2022

Nebraska’s recruiting footprint will expand in two years when UCLA and USC join the Big Ten. This puts Husker games, at least on the Big Ten Network if not live, in California for potential recruits to watch. Interim head coach Mickey Joseph said Nebraska will have to respond by going West, but only for the absolute best. West coast recruits tend to stay closer to home, he said, with options of UCLA, USC, Oregon and Washington.

“One thing Lincoln’s not going to be is California,” Joseph said. “So we’re going to continue to go where we’ve been going: Texas, Louisiana, Georgia, Florida, Mississippi, Alabama, Jersey, Kansas City, St. Louis and here in our home state. … If we’re going out there, we’re going to get a draft pick.”

With two games left in his first Big Ten season, Joseph stressed roster management as a point of improvement for the program. In-state recruiting talent may be at its highest levels ever in Nebraska. But Lincoln doesn’t sit in a hotbed of recruiting capabilities like Texas, Louisiana and Georgia. Joseph said it’s on the leader of the program to go to those places and convince recruits to come to Nebraska.

“You’ve got to work here,” Joseph said. “Whoever takes this job, you’ve got to be ready to work.”

The interim head coach said it comes back to depth and competition. Instead of 12 offensive or defensive linemen, you need 15 or 16. Nebraska needs depth and it needs to be competitive, Joseph said. There can’t be a big drop between No. 1 and No. 2. That sort of competition makes the team better. Joseph explained that the SEC covers every inch in the field whereas the Big Ten is like playing in a phone booth. It’s a physical brawl in the trenches every snap and, by nature, players get sore and hurt.

There’s not one specific area that Joseph believes got neglected, but coaches need to be more aggressive. Not only in trying to get a recruit, but in evaluation of a player so the staff makes sure they get the right recruit. If he’s not ready to play, they need to be two years away from playing. There needs to be a clear path to the field for that recruit. And, through Joseph’s journeys, he knows where those players are.

“I think you’ve got to go down south, you’ve got to go where the heat’s at,” Joseph said. “You’ve got to go where they’re playing big-time high school football. Not that they don’t play it here, but you go to Texas, Louisiana, Georgia, everybody’s grown.”

Recruit Watch

Nebraska officially extended a scholarship offer to emerging Bellevue West junior receiver Isaiah McMorris. He’s a 3-star receiver who set a new state record for receptions (90), and fell just shy of the state record for yards with 1,297 for the Thunderbirds. McMorris earned offers from Kansas State, Texas Tech, and Kansas during the season before a Penn State offer last week. Nebraska finally extended him a scholarship offer that McMorris confirmed on Sunday.

McMorris also pointed out his “bloodline,” as he’s related to former Huskers Niles Paul and Ahman Green.

Uncommitted senior quarterback JT Fayard will be at Memorial Stadium for Saturday’s game. The senior at Richmond High School in Texas hasn’t received a composite star assessment following the end of his senior season. Alabama, LSU, Oklahoma and Texas A&M have shown interest but none of them have extended a scholarship offer.

The Nebraska coaching staff is finalizing its recruiting invitation list for Saturday’s Wisconsin game. We’ll cover that when it’s finalized.

ICYMI

>> Joseph and team captains Garrett Nelson and Travis Vokolek talked about Senior Day and the Wisconsin game during Tuesday’s press conference. You can watch all three at the podium here.

>> Joseph shed some light on Nebraska’s quarterback situation in his comments on Tuesday.

>> The Nebraska volleyball team fell to No. 6 in the latest AVCA rankings after losing to Ohio State on Sunday in four sets.

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