What you need to know about the Huskers early signing class

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Dustin Schutte | 1 hour ago

Things are changing in Lincoln.

Despite a 3-9 campaign in 2021, Scott Frost received the green light to return from Trev Alberts, sending the message that there is still a lot of belief in the head coach entering his fifth season. However, this decision is accompanied by some adjustments.

Frost has restructured his offensive team in an effort to right some of the wrongs the Huskers suffered last season. It was an essential gesture, but one that will certainly have an impact on the recruiting status of the team.

With the early signing period here, the Nebraska class is a little behind the curve. Here’s a look at what the Huskers currently have with the 2022 recruiting cycle.

By the numbers

General classification: 61st

Rank B1G: 14th

5 stars: 0

4 stars : 0

Have they found a future QB?

There might be some hope at quarterback with Richard Torres, a 3-star shooter from San Antonio. He was limited to just 3 games in the 2021 school season due to a knee injury, but he threw over 2,000 yards and rushed for 350 more while recording 36 total touchdowns and only 4 interceptions.

As a multisport athlete, Torres has the potential to step into Lincoln and immediately fight for the starting position, especially with the transfer of Adrian Martinez. There’s a chance Nebraska might have found a diamond in the rough in the quarterback, but that’s hardly a guarantee he’ll be a multi-year starter for the Huskers.

Who is the best offensive player?

Running back Ashton Hayes is the highest-ranked offensive player currently engaged, but wide receiver Victor Jones Jr. could be the guy with the chance to make the quickest impact at Lincoln. At 6ft 2in, the 3-star Orlando prospect adds a good size to the Nebraska receiver room, which could certainly use some depth.

Jones ranks among the top 100 wide receivers in the 2021 class. He hasn’t received the same attention as a 4 or 5 star product, but he could have a very bright future as a wide receiver for the Frost team.

Who is the best defensive player?

Not only the best defensive player, but arguably the best overall prospect currently promised to the Huskers is 3-star linebacker Ernest Hausmann. The Nebraska native is the state’s No.5 player and held a dozen offers before making the decision to stay home.

Defensive coordinator Erik Chinander has done an outstanding job improving the game for Lincoln Hausmann linebacker who could be a future star under his leadership. The 6-3, 205-pound linebacker could be the star of this class for the Huskers.

What position did they recruit the best?

It doesn’t really turn heads, but Nebraska landed a pair of tight Top 55 ends to add to the list. Chase Androff and Brodie Tagaloa bring good size and versatility to the post. And the Huskers have proven they want to use the tightest point more frequently during the 2021 season, putting the ball in Austin Allen’s hands a bit.

Androff is 6ft 6in tall and Tagaloa is 6ft 4in tall. Obviously, the height doesn’t make or break a tight end, but it would provide the passing attack with large targets. It is still a valuable weapon.

What position do they still need to recruit?

Considering the poor performance of the offensive line during Frost’s day, it’s surprising that Nebraska didn’t have a committed offensive lineman. This must change. It should be a little easier with new offensive coordinator Mark Whipple and offensive line coach Donovan Raiola now in place.

There might be some leeway for the Huskers due to COVID-19 waivers and recruiting through the transfer portal, but recruiting offensive linemen is critical in the B1G. The Huskers cannot leave this position open and expect to challenge the B1G in the short or long term.

Did they keep the best players at home?

Nebraska hasn’t done a horrible job of keeping prospects in the state close to home, but it’s also not exactly the kind of year the program had hoped for, either. The Huskers have secured engagements from 3 players who rank in the State’s Top 10 – Hausmann, Jake Appleget (3 EDGE stars) and Gage Stenger (3 LB stars). These players occupy No. 5-No. 7 places in state rankings, respectively.

Each of the Top 4 players slipped through Nebraska’s fingers. Frost and his team missed out on 4-star linebacker Devon Jackson, 4-star offensive lineman Deshawn Woods and 3-star tight ends Kaden Helms and Micah Riley-Ducker.

Frost mentioned winning recruiting battles in the state while in Lincoln. This year, that was not really the case for the Huskers.

General thoughts

Nebraska’s 2021 class leaves a lot to be desired. It’s a small group with no 4 or 5 star outlook. That’s not entirely shocking considering how the team performed in Frost’s day and recent staff changes. Still, sitting at the bottom of the B1G is never where the Huskers should be when it comes to scoring rankings.

The Huskers have traditionally recruited a Top 25 class under Frost, a class that typically ranks in the B1G’s Top 5. They are going to come quite far from that mark this year.


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