Nebraska Football

Taking Stock of Nebraska's Offense Heading Into Summer

May 7, 2019
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The spring semester at Nebraska is officially in the books and the latest wave of departures from the football program appears to have settled down. With that being the case, now is a perfect time to take stock of where the roster stands heading into the summer.

We’ll begin with the offensive side of the ball.

Quarterback (6)

Scholarship (3): Noah Vedral (rSO), Adrian Martinez (SO), Luke McCaffrey (FR)

Walk-On (3): Andrew Bunch (JR), Matt Masker (rFR), Brayden Miller (FR)

Andrew Bunch put his name in the NCAA Transfer Portal at one point but he withdrew it and will remain at Nebraska, and the Huskers welcomed him back with open arms. Noah Vedral had a strong spring while both Luke McCaffrey and Matt Masker flashed in the spring game. Brayden Miller will join the group as a walk-on out of Kearney. The quarterback room looks as solid as it’s been in a long time, not to mention Mario Verduzco already has his next one on the way in 2020 commit Logan Smothers.

Running Back (12)

Scholarship (6): Wyatt Mazour (SR), Dedrick Mills (JR), Jaylin Bradley (rSO), Maurice Washington (SO), Rahmir Johnson (FR), Ronald Thompkins (FR)

Walk-On (6): Austin Hemphill (SR), Connor Ruth (rFR), Brody Belt (rFR), Moses Bryant (rFR), Cooper Jewett (FR), Zach Weinmaster (FR)

Running back is not quite as settled as quarterback. The Maurice Washington legal situation has yet to be resolved and Dedrick Mills still has some work to do academically to make it to Lincoln. If both of those cases turn out in Nebraska’s favor, the Huskers should be fine at running back. If not, well…

Jaylin Bradley is still hanging around and showed some flashes in the spring game. Brody Belt made a name for himself during the spring as a walk-on while Moses Bryant switched from defensive back to running back to add a little more depth. The Huskers only had seven bodies in that room during the spring including a limited Washington, but five more (three scholarship, two walk-ons) should be on the way this summer.

Wide Receiver (16)

Scholarship (10): Mike Williams (SR), Jaron Woodyard (SR), JD Spielman (JR), Jaevon McQuitty (SO), Andre Hunt (rFR), Miles Jones (rFR), Darien Chase (FR), Jamie Nance (FR), Wan’Dale Robinson (FR), Demariyon Houston (FR)

Walk-On (6): Todd Honas (JR), Ty Chaffin (JR), Christian Banker (SO), Kade Warner (SO), Bennett Folkers (rFR), Wyatt Liewer (rFR)

Nebraska is in about the same spot at wide receiver as it was heading into the spring, which isn’t particularly encouraging for a team that needs someone — anyone — to step up to add depth around JD Spielman.  Jamie Nance and Wan’Dale Robinson got an early start to their careers by enrolling early. Jaevon McQuitty is still trying to find his place. Andre Hunt and Robinson both received plenty of praise during the spring, and Kade Warner has been as reliable as ever. Will Mike Williams and Jaron Woodyard be ready to produce as seniors? What can Darien Chase and Demariyon Houston add to the room? We’ll find out in the fall.

Tight End (9)

Scholarship (5): Jack Stoll (JR), Austin Allen (SO), Kurt Rafdal (SO), Katerian Legrone (rFR), Chris Hickman (FR)

Walk-On (4): Bryson Krull (rFR), Ian Boerkircher (rFR), Austin Jablonski (FR), John Goodwin (FR)

Chris Hickman was the new face in the tight end room this spring, but an injury from high school prevented him from participating in spring ball. Aurora alumnus Ian Boerkircher apparently started his career at Nebraska-Kearney but is now a redshirt freshman at Nebraska. A pair of Lincoln products in Lincoln Pius X’s Austin Jablonski and Lincoln High’s John Goodwin will add depth to the room when they arrive this summer.

Offensive Line (24)

Scholarship Interior OL (6): Boe Wilson (JR), John Raridon (JR), Broc Bando (SO), Matt Sichterman (SO), Will Farniok (rFR), Cam Jurgens (rFR)

Scholarship Tackles (7): Christian Gaylord (SR), Brenden Jaimes (JR), Matt Farniok (JR), Bryce Benhart (FR), Matthew Anderson (FR), Michael Lynn (FR), Jimmy Fritzsche (FR)

Walk-On OL (11): Nick Virka (SR), Brian Perez (JR), Josh Wegener (JR), Trent Hixson (SO), Hunter Miller (SO), AJ Forbes (rFR), Mitchell Balenger (rFR), Collin Shefke (rFR), Riley Moses (FR), Noah Stafursky (FR), Eli Richter (FR)

Little has changed with the offensive line. Matt Sichterman has moved from tackle to guard and junior college transfer Desmond Bland is no longer in the picture for the Huskers. Nebraska will add seven bodies to the room — four scholarship and three walk-on — this summer. During the spring, Trent Hixson and Cam Jurgens asserted themselves as the front-runners for the starting left guard and center jobs, respectively.

Athlete (1)

Walk-On ATH (1): Riley Kinney (FR)

The grandson of former Husker Jeff Kinney, Riley Kinney is listed as an athlete after a standout career as a dual-threat quarterback at Loveland High School in Colorado. I’m not sure what position he’ll play so I just put him here in his own category.

Class Tally

Seniors: 6 (4 scholarship, 2 walk-on)

Juniors: 12 (7 scholarship, 5 walk-on)

Sophomores: 13 (9 scholarship, 4 walk-on)

Redshirt Freshmen: 16 (5 scholarship, 11 walk-on)

True Freshmen: 21 (12 scholarship, 9 walk-on)

Total: 68 (37 scholarship, 31 walk-on)

 
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