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.
The questions never stop in the recruiting world. No matter what time of year it is, there is always something to talk about so we have been taking reader and listener suggestions on questions. I then answer the questions in a quick video. This week’s question will set the tone for the early signing period. Twitter user @Huskercat1 wants to know about the class size. They smartly included transfer additions into the equation too.
So how big of a signing class are the Huskers looking at for the 2022 class?
How big will our class be? Transfers included.
— HuskerCat (@HuskerCat1) December 12, 2021
Recruiting class size is always a moving target. Teams would love to take 25 signees each year like clockwork. Things never quite work out that cleanly. We have known for months that the Huskers would be taking a smaller recruiting class this cycle. That was because of a couple big factors.
The Huskers were unsure about how many “super seniors” they would have for the 2022 season. The NCAA did not alter the rules allowing for those returning players to not count toward the scholarship numbers. They did for the 2021 season. If a player like Austin Allen had returned to school, his scholarship would count in 2022. Coach Scott Frost hoped to get several of those players back. That made the projected number of signees smaller. We still are unsure of how many of those players will be returning to Nebraska in 2022. It doesn’t appear that many will return.
Another factor in the numbers game is how many underclassmen the Huskers have on the roster. This can be attributed to the COVID eligibility freeze. It’s also because the Huskers have redshirted a lot of players under Frost. That has caused a large imbalance in the scholarship distribution. That’s another reason for the projected class number to be small.
We’ve been looking at 13-16 prospects signing with Nebraska for the 2022 recruiting class. Even with attrition and less players coming back to school for an extra year that number has remained steady. The reason for that is clear. The Huskers are on the search for players that can help make an impact on the 2022 season. It is tough for the Huskers to find those players through high school recruiting. It makes sense to turn to the transfer portal and JUCO for players than can make an impact in the upcoming season.
That also reflects the urgency that everyone needs to operate with. The team just went 3-9 in Frost’s fourth season. The moves made this offseason should reflect an uncomfortable situation in Lincoln. It’s hard to rely on too many freshmen as new blood to help make a bowl game in 2022.
The size (and ranking) of the class on Wednesday might end up being jarring for casual recruiting followers. The team enters signing day week with the worst class ranking in the Big Ten. This cycle will be a success if the team hits on its share of transfers. The transfer additions won’t be reflected in the recruiting rankings. We also won’t know everyone who is transferring to Nebraska this week. Transfers don’t sign anything so they are free to join the team when they want to. Doing it by early January makes sense for winter conditioning.
There is a lot still to come for this recruiting class and the news that follows on transfers. This year is going to be much different than a normal signing day for the Huskers.
>> The Huskers offered a scholarship to transfer punted Brian Buschini on Monday.
— BRIAN BUSCHINI (@brian_buschini) December 13, 2021
>> Nebraska quarterback commit Richard Torres has a time set for his signing ceremony.
— Richard Torres (@richie_2112) December 13, 2021
>> Potential quarterback transfer target Chubba Purdy took a visit to Pittsburgh over the weekend.
— Chubba Purdy (@chubbapurdy) December 13, 2021
>> Priority 2023 target Maverick Noonan was offered by Iowa over the weekend.
>> The Huskers lost a member of the 2022 recruiting class when running back Ashton Hayes left the class.
>> As Derek Peterson writes, Mark Whipple doesn’t have to make Nebraska was Pitt was. He just has to bring the details.
>> The Huskers impressed Minnesota running back (Premium) Emmett Johnson on his official visit.
>> Nebraska football announced its 2021 team award winners on Monday.
>> Jacob Padilla has five thoughts (Premium) on Bellevue West’s 95-68 win over Lincoln Pius X.
>> Furman specialist transfer Timmy Bleekrode is set to join the Huskers on scholarship.
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.