The Hail Varsity 2021 Nebraska Football Yearbook is the best way to get ready for the Huskers’ season ahead. It features a position-by-position breakdown of Nebraska, previews of all 14 Big Ten teams and the Husker’s nonconference opponents, top-quality photography and in-depth features including:
- The still-remarkable stinginess of the 1971 Blackshirts. Nebraska’s defense gave up seven or fewer points in 10 of 13 games that year, powering the Huskers to their second national title. Mike Babcock spoke with members of that defense to collect details and stories that often get lost with the passage of time.
- The can’t-miss stature of Austin Allen. It’s about more than just his height, though as a young athlete that led him to believe basketball was his path to a college scholarship. Then things changed, as he told Jacob Padilla for this story. Now Allen, Nebraska’s leading returning receiver, stands out for his ability on the football field and his leadership off it.
- The ongoing disappearance of recruiting borders. Nebraska has always had to recruit nationally. It was never easy, but the Huskers were at least good at it. In today’s recruiting landscape, however, more teams are starting to look beyond their traditional backyards for players. Greg Smith explores what that could mean for Nebraska.
- The unending competitiveness of Cam Taylor-Britt. When the freshman defensive back, a quarterback in high school, arrived at Nebraska he immediately asked to cover the Huskers’ best receiver in practice. Those who have known Taylor-Britt the longest—Derek Peterson spoke with many of them—have plenty of similar stories that help show why the senior cornerback enters the year as one of Nebraska’s most important players.
- The fact that Nebraska is counting on contributions from two FCS players who last played in 2019. For most of the past 40 years, the road between FCS and FBS football was a one-way street—players went down, they didn’t come up. That’s starting to change and the Huskers are betting wide receiver Samori Toure and linebacker Chris Kolarevic will show the gap was never as big as it seemed.
- The reason Ben Stille is back. When you’re out of college, a sixth year of carefree campus life sounds great. When you’re in college, and trying to weigh what maximizes your chances at an NFL career while also considering life beyond that, it’s less of a no-brainer. Luckily, as he shares in this year’s cover story, by Erin Sorensen, sober decision-making has always been one of Stille’s strengths.