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Nebraska Recruiting: Thawing Out in the Frost Era

Nebraska gets its first commit of the Scott Frost era.

Iowa v Nebraska Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images

With the first ever early signing day for 2018 freshmen coming up December 20th, Frost and his staff have their work cut out to land some of the early signers (or at least keep them from signing) while building their boards to finish this transition class on a strong note. While I question the wisdom of this coaching staff trying to split time between UCF and Nebraska, I won’t pretend I know better than a coaching staff that went undefeated this season.

So what’s been happening since Riley and his staff were let go?

Nebraska has lost the commitments of two players (so far) who were recruited by Riley and his staff: WRs Joshua Moore and Mario Goodrich. With Keith Williams not being retained and Cameron Brown visiting Ohio State this weekend, expect Nebraska’s sole WR commit to also move on shortly as well.

This is to be expected in a transition class, especially with one where none of the former coaches are retained. Players typically commit to the coaching staff at a school, not the program they’re signing up for. (Expect the same to continue under Frost, mind you. That’s how the game is played.) Luckily, we’re paying this staff the big bucks to lock down current recruits (who fit their plan going forward) while replacing and filling the rest of the class out. Expect Frost and Walters to target their own WR options going forward.

What’s that leave us for recruiting?

As of earlier this evening, Nebraska has 7 commits remaining from the Riley era, though as I noted above, expect Cameron Brown to decommit shortly after this weekend. This small class also means we’re sitting at last in the Big Ten and in the bottom half of FBS-level college football for recruiting rankings. Ouch.

That said, with Nebraska expected to sign a class of 20+ players, there’s a lot of room for Frost to quickly move Nebraska back up the rankings. It’s worth noting that there is a new NCAA bylaw on the books which apparently allows new staffs to reallocate scholarship players to non-competition scholarships, allowing the former student athletes to complete their 4 year degree while the coaching staff pursues a a full class (25+3 players in Big Ten) towards the 85 scholarship count at the beginning of fall camp. It’ll be interesting to see if Frost’s staff takes advantage of this.

Current 2018 commits:

4* Cameron Jurgens | TE | Beatrice, NE

4* Tate Wildeman | WDE | Parker, CO

4* Cameron Brown | WR | St. Louis, MO

3* David Alston | WDE | St. Paul, MN

3* Will Farniok | OC | Sioux Falls, SD

3* Masry Mapieu | DT | York, NE

3* Barret Pickering | K | Hoover, AL

Wait, I thought we were supposed to be jazzed about recruiting here?

Yes, yes, I know. But I figured the bad news first was the best way to start this post.

So let’s get to the happy, shall we?

Introducing your first commit of the Scott Frost era!

CJ Smith is a 4* safety out of West Palm Beach, FL. He just came off his official visit to Nebraska and I guess he must have liked what he saw. Smith was a player Frost and his coaches had an eye on at UCF.

There will probably be a heavy Florida flavor to this class going forward for this staff as they’ll be harvesting those Florida connections from UCF to fill this class.

Smith’s commitment doesn’t do much to boost Nebraska’s ranking as they remain at #14 in the Big Ten and #81 in the nation, according to 247Sports.

Here is Smith’s HUDL film:

This garnered some excitement out of the staff, who apparently can also use GIFs.

(Someone should tell Coach Held that the BOOM and BOAT motifs have been claimed by mediocre coaches claiming elite status.)

Curiously, Coach Walters followed his tweet up with this one...

Could we have another recruit soon? Maybe!

PS: For those interested, here is the current list of staff and their Twitter handles:

EDITOR’S NOTE: Do you obsess over recruiting? Do you take your time to tell your friends all about the kids about to sign with Nebraska and their potential in Scott Frost’s Ultimate Offense of Awesomeness Incarnate (patent pending)? Do you spend hours perusing your favorite recruiting websites while refreshing Twitter daily? Are you willing to spend hours watching recruit announcement videos for the hope one of them picks Dear Ol NU? Are you a journalism student looking for an angle and relevant experience? If you’re any of these things and want to join a staff of a fan-based Nebraska website, we’re here to help!

We got the Cobcast hired by David Max! (Just kidding, but do continue to follow them as they take their hi-jinks and interviews to!) Just think of what we could do for you!

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