The last 36 hours has not been a truly good one in Nebraska recruiting for the 2013 cycle, perceptions be damned.
First, Friday evening had the decommitment of Wide Receiver Dominic Walker.
Walker, who will be joining his HS teammate with Auburn this coming fall, originally joined the Huskers after a decommitment from Vanderbilt back in October. The talk is of what Bo Pelini said to him in the phone call to tell him the news and the subsequent reaction by both Pelini and wide receivers coach Rich Fisher.
The reaction to the phone call is neither here nor there. In all honesty both parties could have maybe treated it better. However, the fact is that Nebraska's staff made such a big effort to keep Walker and showed some frustration when their work didn't pan out. The reaction isn't a surprise, but could have been worded better, for sure.
The second bit of news came across the wire just this morning, and was visible for a long time coming.
Officially decommitted from Nebraska. Not an emotional decision, doing what's best for me.— Marcus McWilson (@MMcWilson4) January 27, 2013
Safety Marcus McWilson of Cardinal Mooney HS in Youngstown Ohio, which is the same school as one Bo Pelini and the Stoops brothers (Bob, Mike, and Mark), decommitted from Nebraska after a visit to Kentucky this weekend.
His reason? I would bet it happens to be because of the relationship with McWilson and current Kentucky tight ends coach Vince Marrow who was recruiting for the Huskers as a graduate assistant while Barney Cotton was injured and could not go out on the road earlier this year.
Brandon and I have spoken about how much this relationship played into Nebraska's recruiting. Not only did Marrow have the lead with McWilson for the Huskers, he also was the key man in the recruitment of Beau Sandland, the Number 1 ranked Junior College TE this year. Sandland decided to leave Nebraska behind and sign with Miami (FL) because of Marrow's departure. Furthermore, it played into the decision of defensive end Antoine Miles, who literally decommitted from Nebraska after committing a week earlier from Marrow's leaving to Kentucky.
I wonder, does Vince leaving and the fact that Mark Stoops doesn't mind going after Cardinal Mooney kids now show that Nebraska could be in trouble in Ohio? Think about it from the view that Bo has used Mooney kids all this time in Lincoln (Tim Marlowe, Braylon Heard, Mark Pelini, and current '13 commit Courtney Love) and now, Marrow could just walk in and use his relationship with McWilson to get him to both visit and flip.
Time will tell with the results from Ohio, however there is no Plan B for McWilson leaving the class, and WR James Clark, who is considered the fallback for Dominic Walker, visiting Ohio State and reportedly loved by Urban Meyer. The timing of all these issues could not come at a worse time for the Huskers.
That being said, there will be kids that fill out this class, and it is still a top 20 class whether you look at Rivals or 24/7. But, there is a little less steam heading into National Signing Day.