A ways back when John and I were still pumping out podcasts of MidWest Coast Bias, we spoke about Tim Beck combining his Texas resources with Shawn Watson. These are beginning to bear fruit in the form of three commitments in the past three days. Offensive linemen Jess Coffey and Nick Ash join Emerson Evans as the three newest members of the 2008-2009 recruiting class. What do they bring to the table? Aside from a budding Texas pipeline, let’s have a look:
Coffey gets to go first since he committed first. At 6’7" 270 pounds, those numbers immediately tell me that there’s some work to be done. S&C Coach Dobson can easily put 30-50 pounds of muscle on the frame and if we go to the video tape, my suspicions are confirmed. For 6’7", Coffey’s a lanky dude and doesn’t have the power he can with more beef on his bones. He stands his man up okay but when you come into the Big XII conference, you have to be ready for a defensive lineman whose main objective is to rip your quarterback’s heart out and feed it to him coming off of the line. Right now I don’t see that in Coffey, however I do see a very "heady" player.
While Coffey’s weight and blocking may not be up to snuff just yet, his movements and motions are. He knows where he needs to be and he knows the force he needs to deliver, but again we run into the issue of not having the physical tools necessary to compete jumping in. I look at Coffey and I think "project" but not in a bad way. If Dobson can get his hands on him, he is coached properly and gets a few snaps in his initial freshman and sophomore years. Coffey could turn out to be a solid prospect. He’s got a way to go before he reaches that peak, but he could get there.
Emerson Evans then pulled the trigger giving Nebraska a 6’1" 230 "defensive end". Note the quotation marks I used there. I don’t see Evans as a defensive end at all. I see him as a hybrid and not just in the way that he gets 50 miles per gallon and runs off of stuff grown in the ground. I think Pelini could utilize Evans as a very special sort of MIKE. We’re talking about a guy that could do just as much damage in pass coverage as run stopping not to mention bringing him straight through the middle on an all out blitz.
Nick Ash is a very good pick up for the Cornhuskers looking to regain offensive line "Pipeline" status. At 6’5" and 261 pounds, Ash presents a more polished Coffey in my eye. Watching him from the guard position, he has good push, plays like his hair’s on fire and can get downfield in a hurry. Coffey and Ash also carry the same brightness. Very smart guys both of them. I suppose when Harvard offers you as they did Coffey that’s an indication of something, but that could just be me.
Ash holds his own as a pass-blocker as well. He can keep his man at arm’s length and the thing I REALLY like about Nick is his footwork. Constantly grinding, constantly moving. I would also like to note that Barney Cotton was assigned to Nick. Originally it appeared that Cotton had been striking out left and right with the past year’s recruits and now this year’s, but with the Ash commitment, Barney definitely did good so a tip of the cap today to Coach Cotton. Whether he can get Ash and Coffey where they need to be we’ll find out later on down the road.