Nebraska football mailbag: Any insight on the Huskers’ roster attrition this spring?
Have Nebraska football questions? We’ve got answers. Join us every Wednesday for the Land of 10 Nebraska mailbag to talk all things Huskers. This week, we discuss Nebraska’s roster attrition this spring, recruiting ahead of National Signing Day, and more.
Any insight into who may leave the team or transfer?
— Rob & Lori Files (@rflf092303) January 30, 2018
I wanted to touch on this question first because it directly impacts Nebraska coach Scott Frost and how he recruits for the 2018 class. With National Signing Day one week away, this felt like a good time to talk about transfers and roster attrition.
Prior to former coach Mike Riley’s dismissal, he was looking at a 2018 recruiting class size of approximately 18 athletes. That was obviously a fluid number and subject to change, but it seemed unlikely it would hit the 20-mark or surpass it.
Now? It looks like Frost and his staff are shooting well above the 20-mark and there’s a reason for this. You guessed it in your question: players leaving the team and transferring.
We now know that wide receiver/holder Zack Darlington has made the decision to depart the program. That’s in addition to quarterback Tanner Lee and offensive lineman Nick Gates, who previously declared for the NFL Draft. Beyond those three, though? I can’t say for sure who may or may not depart now. I have some guesses and assumptions, but it wouldn’t be right of me to share those before anything is official.
Here’s what I will say: Darlington, Lee, and Gates are not it. The Huskers can have up to 88 scholarships this spring, with a plan to get the number to 85 by this summer. Land of 10’s Chris Bumbaca explained a little more about this process in his Nebraska recruiting mailbag last week. The fact that Frost and Co. are looking to sign a class around 23-25 athletes? They clearly know something we don’t.
Long story short: There will be more transfers/attrition. Stay tuned.
Ta’Zhawn Henry (RB) isn't visiting this weekend anymore. Is this a problem or does it speak to the staff's confidence in landing Maurice Washington?
— Jared Hardy (@jaredmyerhardy) January 30, 2018
I think Chris said it best in this week’s Nebraska recruiting mailbag that Ta’Zhawn Henry and Tyrone Sampson Jr. were backup options to Maurice Washington. Frost and his staff clearly feel confident in landing Washington, so they’re putting their full attention on him.
With that said, Washington will be at Nebraska this weekend for his official visit. This will be one worth keeping an eye on over the next week.
If you go to Kenneth George’s twitter he announced he uncommitted from Nebraska. Was he ever committed and does this show the staffs confidence in Taiyon Palmer & Cam Taylor?
— Huskermef (@huskermef) January 30, 2018
That whole situation was really odd to me. Apparently Kenneth George Jr. signed per his dad’s Twitter and a now deleted tweet from his own account. And then he de-committed, which only seemed to confuse more people (just read the replies to his tweet). From what I was able to dig up, it appears that he was visited but maybe didn’t firmly commit. I honestly cannot figure this situation out for the life of me.
Regardless, he also appeared to be a bit of a backup option to other prospects. I like Nebraska’s chances with Cam Taylor. I’m less confident in Taiyon Palmer, but he did put Nebraska in his top 3. You never know.
What’s the mental statement of players after what happened to the two injured players? Do you think they overexercised or they simply couldn’t perform properly the routine ?
— cedrick ceballos (@cedestas) January 30, 2018
I knew this question was coming, and you weren’t the only one to ask it. I want to start by saying that I am not a medical professional — nor a trainer, for that matter — so I offer my opinion in a very limited manner.
Here’s the thing about rhabdomyolysis: It’s cause is not a simple answer. It’s not a clearcut “they were overworked” or “the previous staff didn’t do its job” type of answer. I know people want it to be, but that’s just not how it works.
In fact, the NCAA lists 10 factors that increase the risk of rhabdomyolysis. And then I heard from folks today that said they knew someone in military training (who was in great shape) — or some other type of training — that suffered from rhabdomyolysis, too. I mean, even WebMD lists a slew of reasons for rhabdomyolysis.
With that said, the athletes’ well-being is absolutely top priority and I appreciate Frost getting out in front of this. He took full responsibility on Tuesday, and I think that says a lot about him. I imagine that carries over into the mental state of the players, knowing their coach is going to own up to any issues that come their way. I’m not concerned about the players being too upset right now, especially if it’s something everyone is able to learn from and prevent from happening again.
And with that said, I’m glad both Tyjon Lindsey and Dylan Owen are doing well. That’s the most important thing out of all of this.
You’re starting a football team of animals, what animal is your number 1 overall pick?
— Zac Champoux (@OnceYouGoZac92) January 30, 2018
After thinking this through and discussing with a friend, I have settled on an elephant. As we both determined, elephants are smart as hell, can hold a football with its trunk and can’t be stopped. Roll Tide.
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