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Marcus Hicks enjoys first unofficial visit to Nebraska
The last two home games have served as the front for two big recruiting weekends for Nebraska. Not only have 2018 commits and prospects visited Lincoln, but there have been some 2019 recruits sprinkled in there, too. We documented the big names that were in town for the Ohio State game, led by 4-star athlete Talanoa Hufanga. Meanwhile, a key 2019 prospect, Marcus Hicks, took his first visit to Nebraska.
He caught up with Bryan Munson of Rivals to recap his weekend.
Overall, it seemed that Hicks enjoyed the trip. He ate with some of the other recruits, watched warmups from the sidelines and watched the tunnel walk before the game, which he said was “amazing.” Hicks also took a pregame tour of the locker room and saw how the players prepared themselves for the matchup.
Hicks, a 4-star weak-side defensive end at Wichita (Kan.) Northwest High School, resides inside of Nebraska’s 500-mile radius. He holds nine offers, including offers from Ohio State and Iowa. Kansas, Kansas State, Texas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State have also offered the 2019 prospect.
Hicks said he can play either defensive end or outside linebacker in a 3-4 system, a scheme his high school team employs. He doesn’t necessarily have a preference, but said the Cornhuskers are recruiting him at linebacker. Nonetheless, defensive line coach John Parrella has led the recruitment of Hicks.
“I could definitely see myself in Nebraska’s 3-4 defense,” Hicks said. “They said that they see me as an outside linebacker, but I would be fine at either end or linebacker.”
The weekend before going to Nebraska, Hicks took an unofficial visit to Oklahoma. This weekend, he will take an unofficial visit to Arkansas.
The Cornhuskers have only one Class of 2019 commit, Garrett Nelson, who is an outside linebacker. A commitment from Hicks likely will not come for a while and, judging by the offers he’s received, his recruitment will only become more expansive. However, if Nebraska can eventually land Hicks, it will have a solid grouping at the linebacker position in the 2019 class.
On the field, Hicks brings active hands at the line of scrimmage and substantial strength. His gap control and ability to “stay at home” is also admirable for a young player. Check out his mid-season highlights below:
The Cornhuskers’ loss to Ohio State didn’t diminish Hicks’ first visit to Lincoln. He said he wants to return for another visit.
“It was a lot more exciting than I thought it was going to be,” Hicks said. “I will definitely try and make it up for another visit. I wasn’t disappointed by the outcome of the game at all. I had an amazing experience and I haven’t lost any respect for the coaches or players at Nebraska.”
That’s an important point, and it seems to be consistent among many of Nebraska’s targets. While the results may be distressing for the fan base (and there’s nothing wrong with that), the recruits don’t seem to be panicked.
In-state recruit Caden McCormack also in town
Hicks wasn’t the only 2019 linebacker prospect on an unofficial visit last weekend. Lincoln Southwest standout Caden McCormack also took in the Ohio State game. Also speaking to Munson at Rivals, McCormack said he opted not to take a tour of the facilities because he had been there before, and instead went to the field to catch up with some other recruits.
McCormack will likely play inside linebacker if he plays for Nebraska.
“Nebraska likes me at linebacker, but I will play anywhere,” McCormack said. “I believe my athleticism makes me a good fit with my ability to tackle and cover in open space. You have to be able to cover ground, and I am very comfortable doing that.”
Similar to Hicks, McCormack enjoyed watching the tunnel walk.
“It was amazing. I had goosebumps. The tunnel walk is probably one of the best feelings.”
For his Lincoln Southwest team, McCormack has been playing on both sides of the ball. An injury suffered midway through his second game of the season kept him out for three weeks, but his numbers are still solid. McCormack has 35 tackles and an interception.
Long snapper Cameron Pieper accepts walk-on offer
Sometimes you can’t script it any better. Nebraska coach Mike Riley approached Cameron Pieper, also visiting over the weekend, at the 50-yard line of Memorial Stadium before the game and offered him a spot on Nebraska’s 2018 roster as a walk-on.
“I had a feeling that they could ask me to walk on,” Pieper told Munson. “The opportunity means everything to me.”
Another Lincoln Southwest standout, like McCormack, Piper said he immediately accepted Riley’s offer. That would make him the third long snapper on Nebraska’s roster for next season, assuming both junior Jordan Ober and sophomore Chase Urbach return. On Nebraska’s current depth chart, Ober is the starter and Urbach is the backup.
Pieper held a scholarship offer from Minnesota State and said he also generated interest from Kansas State, Iowa State, Iowa, LSU and Wyoming.
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