Stay updated with Nebraska Cornhuskers football recruiting in the latest edition of The Harvest, which posts at 7:30 p.m. ET Sunday through Thursday. Don’t miss out on Nebraska recruiting news, and check out previous editions of The Harvest here.
Mosai Newsom returns to Lincoln for junior day
By this point, it’s plenty clear what Nebraska thinks of Mosai Newsom. The 3-star defensive end was in attendance at Nebraska’s junior day Saturday. It was the second time in a month that the Waverly, Iowa, player has been to campus. Newsom unofficially visited in mid-March during his spring break. On Saturday, he had the chance to be around plenty of other recruits and watched the Huskers practice in front of nearly 100 program alumni.
Defensive coordinator Erik Chinander, also an Iowa native, is leading Newsom’s recruitment. The Huskers want to take advantage of the regional talent in the 2019 class. Defensive line will be an area of need. The combination of those circumstances has made the 6-foot-3, 250-pound recruit a significant priority.
Newsom’s 247Sports Crystal Ball has been trending positively for Nebraska, with two picks in favor of the Huskers coming over the last two days. Iowa is the other contender in what is shaping up to be a Big Ten West recruiting showdown.
It’s unknown if the Waverly-Shell Rock standout will commit soon, but he would be a valuable piece early in the cycle if Nebraska can earn a pledge.
Newsom is the No. 36 weakside defensive end and No. 581 overall prospect in the class, according to the 247Sports composite rankings.
Nebraska offers JUCO defensive end
After receiving little interest out of high school, Jermaine Johnson enrolled at Independence (Kan.) Community College. The Eden Prairie, Minn., native made a wise choice and has seen his stock rise in the year he’s been there. Johnson now holds 12 offers, with Oregon, Georgia, UCLA, Illinois and Texas among those offering so far.
Coming out of high school, Johnson was the 11th-ranked prospect in Minnesota.
247Sports evaluated Johnson as a “lean, tall kid with the frame to get bigger and stronger. Naturally coordinated and light on his feet. Can change direction and run plays down in pursuit. Raw, has to work on using his hands more violently while improving his explosiveness off the ball but has the natural tools to develop.”
Nebraska is banking on another JUCO season expediting his development. That way, if he does pick the Huskers, he can contribute upon enrolling.
The Huskers have been active in the JUCO market, signing five players in the 2018 class from those ranks. Nebraska will keep close tabs on the talent at the regional junior colleges such as Iowa Western, Garden City (Kan.) and Independence.
Linebacker target Allen Smith commits to UNC
One of the Grayson High (Ga.) standouts Nebraska was targeting is off the board.
Three-star linebacker Allen Smith committed to North Carolina during his unofficial visit there over the weekend. Smith, the No. 90 outside linebacker in the class, picked up an offer from the Huskers on Feb. 27. He had preliminary plans to take an official visit sometime during the season, according to his coach.
Smith’s teammate and Nebraska target, 5-star outside linebacker Owen Pappoe, is expected to announce his decision on May 5. He, too, was expected to visit during the fall for an official visit.
If Smith and Pappoe do take official visits to Lincoln, they likely will be attached to another school at the time, making for an interesting dynamic during the trip.
Hank Bounds reaches out to Marcus Hicks‘ father
Since Scott Frost took over as coach at Nebraska, the entire administration has entered a top-to-bottom effort to support and promote the program.
Athletic director Bill Moos, University of Nebraska president Hank Bounds and Chancellor Ronnie Green all have taken time to meet and spend significant time with recruits during their visits with the Huskers. This was especially true when Nebraska hosted official visits in January and February to round out the 2018 class. But the practice has continued into the early visits for 2019 prospects.
Kelvin Hicks, the father of 4-star outside linebacker Marcus Hicks, tweeted a letter sent to him from Bounds.
“It was great seeing you again last Saturday morning,” Bounds wrote. “I trust that you and Marcus had a great visit, and I hope you enjoyed watching the Huskers practice.”
The Hickses did indeed enjoy their day at Nebraska two weekends ago. Last weekend, they visited Oklahoma, which currently owns all of the five predictions on Marcus’ 247Sports Crystal Ball.
Their trip was “great as usual,” Kelvin told Land of 10.
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