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Jayden Daniels includes Huskers in top 8
As the 2019 recruiting cycle goes on, Nebraska’s options at quarterback remain plentiful, despite there being more traction with some prospects at the position than others.
The Huskers received more good news late Monday when 4-star quarterback Jayden Daniels (Cajon/San Bernardino, Calif.) included them in his top 8 schools. Penn State, UCLA, USC, California, Texas A&M, Georgia and Utah also were on the list.
Daniels is the No. 2 dual-threat quarterback in the class and the No. 80 overall prospect, according to the 247Sports composite rankings.
Until recently, USC was thought to be the frontrunner for Daniels. But with the Trojans receiving a commitment at quarterback from 3-star prospect Kedon Slovis, a flurry of 247Sports Crystal Ball predictions have come in favor of UCLA.
Nebraska quarterbacks coach Mario Verduzco said last week he was pleased with the way his quarterback board was coming together. With Daniels officially open for business with Nebraska, it will be interesting to see if there’s a spark to be had in the relationship.
Even though Daniels has the highest ranking among the QB targets, I doubt he’s No. 1 on Verduzco’s board. However, he would be an excellent fit in Scott Frost’s up-tempo offense that gives the quarterback tremendous power and the ability to make plays with his athleticism.
But until Nebraska hosts Daniels for a visit, I would not get my hopes up too high of seeing the 6-foot-3, 190-pound quarterback in red down the line. However, the fact Daniels has a significant interest in Nebraska speaks to how excited offensive recruits — at any position — are about the idea of playing in the Huskers’ scheme.
It’s unknown if Verduzco has completed his evaluation of Daniels at Cajon High School yet this cycle. If he hasn’t, the coach has a little more than a week to check in with Daniels. For Cajon in 2017, Daniels completed 321 passes for 5,139 yards and 62 touchdowns. He also rushed for 1,292 yards on 193 carries with 15 touchdowns.
Peni Naulu names Huskers to top 6 schools
Peni Naulu, a 3-star outside linebacker, included Nebraska in the final list of 6 schools he issued on Monday.
“I just trust God and stuff like that,” he told Land of 10. “He just leads me in the right direction.”
Naulu is from Kapolei, Hawaii, and he said the other schools on his list — UCLA, Washington, Oregon, Washington State and Oregon State — were on the West Coast so that it would be easier for his family to watch him play.
Including Nebraska was for him.
“Nebraska has been one of the schools that I’ve been looking at [since I was] a child,” Naulu said.
Turns out, former Nebraska defender Nate Gerry is a hero from Naulu’s youth. That might seem random, but there’s an explanation.
“I play safety and linebacker,” Naulu said.
Gerry played a little bit of both during his time with the Huskers. When Naulu was searching YouTube for players with similar skills to him, he found No. 25 in the red jersey.
Defensive coordinator Erik Chinander has been Naulu’s primary contact with Nebraska. The two talk about three times per week, Naulu said. Chinander has invited Naulu to visit campus, which he hopes to do over the summer.
“It’s been good,” Naulu said. “We’ve been able to build that good relationship.”
Chinander has given Naulu an idea of where he fits in the Huskers’ defense, and the answer right now is pretty broad. Naulu said Chinander told him that he could fit at any of the four linebacker spots in the scheme, but his size indicates he’d be best suited for an inside slot. Naulu described himself as a leader on the field whose primary objective simply is to make the play.
He said he wants to be a civil engineer, and Chinander has been selling him on the program in Lincoln.
It’s an even playing field among the six schools remaining, Naulu said. For Nebraska to ultimately separate itself, it will have to forge the deepest relationship. And since the Huskers are the farthest school from home, it will take plenty of extra work to make up for the distance.
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