During an appearance on Sports Nightly last night, Husker head coach Scott Frost said that voluntary workouts have been “fairly problem free” and that “the vast majority of the guys that we’re going to need to win are almost football ready right now.” One player who isn’t back is JD Spielman as the slot receiver entered the NCAA Transfer Portal earlier in the week. While Spielman’s departure leaves little in the way of production in the wide receiver room, Frost says that group will look very different in 2020. “That’s been a position we’ve been trying to rebuild to get right really since the first day that we stepped onto campus here,” Frost said. “It’s a position where we’re going to need to be better. We certainly have some veterans that we think can help us, but we’re going to be relying on a lot of new players there.” Despite restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Frost said he’s pleased with gains made on the recruiting trail. “This is a unique year, I think there are roughly three times more kids committed than any other year in recuiting history at this point in the process. Things are happening alot earlier and we certainly want try to get the right kids and we’re not in a hurry but everything is just moving faster.” Frost added, “It’s kind of good for us that this year we’re probably going to sign a little bit smaller class, so we’re able to be a little more patient and selective, and I think we’re in a good spot right now.” Frost also expressed his optimism about the college football season beginning on time and as scheduled. “I’m feeling better and better about it,” Frost said. “I think every week that goes by and things are changing, we get a little bit closer to having an on-time college football season and I think that’s what our country probably needs and everybody is looking forward to.”
In recruiting news; Will Schweitzer verbally committed to the Huskers Wednesday. A three-star recruit according to 247Sports composite rankings, the 6-foot-4, 210 pound outside linebacker from California chose Nebraska over offers from 21 other schools including Cal, Utah, Michigan State, Arizona State, Arkansas, Boise State and Colorado. His commitment gives the Huskers five linebackers in the 2021 class. Nebraska now has ten total commitments for the 2021 recruiting cycle.
Nebraska 2020 football recruit Nash Hutmacher has been named a High School All-American by Amateur Wrestling News. Hutmacher, who is projected to play defensive tackle for the Huskers, made a name for himself during his mat career at Chamberlain (S.D.) High School. Hutmacher ended his career with 73 consecutive pins to shatter the South Dakota state record. Hutmacher, who entertained football offers from Wisconsin and Oregon, in addition to Nebraska, finished his career at Chamberlain with a career record of 227-34 and four state championships. His last loss in high school wrestling came as an eighth grader as he won the final 166 matches of his career and become just the fourth wrestler in state history to win four state championships.
The ability for college athletes to profit off of their name, image and likeness is likely coming in 2021. Nebraska football already has started planning for it with the advent of its Ready Now program, which includes a partnership with locally based Opendorse. In a recent 538 story, Opendorse co-founder Blake Lawrence shared some Nebraska-specific data that showed the top potential earner from social media alone — so no other forms of profit, whether they be from other forms of marketing, commercials, autographs, etc., included — and the numbers are significant. Using a combination of social media following and projected opportunities, Lawrence suggested NU junior quarterback Adrian Martinez could make $153,147 in a year from social media alone. The top mark in volleyball, Lexi Sun, could make $38,438. Both of them, by Opendorse’ calculations, could command more than $1,000 per post. In Martinez’s case, slightly more than $1,500 per.
The website 247Sports has posted a fantastic interview with Kearney Catholic’s Heinrich Haarberg. Haarberg is the first Nebraska native QB to be a scholarship recruit since Mike McLaughlin out of Millard North in 2001. You can find the interview at https://247sports.com/Article/Nebraska-Huskers-football-2021-recruiting-class-Heinrich-Haarberg-148028941/
The Nebraska Volleyball team has begun voluntary workouts this week and Coach John Cook reports all 16 players are on campus and participating. The Huskers are still awaiting word from the Big Ten on how the 2020 schedule will look.
Shrine Bowl officials say the high school all-star game remains scheduled for July 11th in Kearney. But there are still some obstacles. The biggest: state health officials have yet to relax COVID-19 restrictions allowing contact sports such as football to be played. Also announced: There will be a limit of 10 family members per player, and all patrons will have their temperature taken upon entering the stadium.
We are exactly one week away from the start of the Legion Baseball season. The Runza Seniors will open their season Thursday, June 18th, hosting Grand Island Home Federal in a double-header at Memorial Field. Both games of that double-dip can be heard on your long time home of Kearney Legion baseball, KGFW and online at KGFW.com. The Post 52 Juniors open their season Thursday, June 18th, playing in a four day tournament in Lincoln. Their first home games are Thursday, June 24th when they host Hastings in a double-header at Memorial Field. The Jerseys Seniors and Five Points Juniors open their season Thursday, June 18th with games at St. Paul. Five Points’ home opener will be that Saturday June 18th, as they take on Grand Island in a double-header at Memorial Field. The Jerseys Seniors first home game is Friday, June 26th when they host Minden. Due to current restrictions attendance at games at Kearney’s Memorial Field will be limited to immediate family members. Find more at BASEBALLKEARNEY.COM