Four years ago, Cam Jurgens stayed in his home state and committed to Nebraska as a tight end. Scott Frost and staff quickly brought up the idea of converting him to the offensive line, a position Jurgens had never played. Now, he has made the Rimington Trophy watch list - one of 40 centers to do so.
After a redshirt year to gain size and then overcoming injuries early in his redshirt freshman year, he quickly took hold of the starting center position. He has athleticism in spades, but some poorly timed high snaps earned groans all around Husker nation. He handled the negative attention well - making no excuses and owning up to his mistakes. Those mistakes also overshadowed some of the growth we’ve seen in his game.
In 2021, he enters his third year working with Adrian Martinez. Jurgens is now a grizzled veteran and Husker fans are hoping to see him use that extreme athleticism in paving the way for a stable of talented, but unproven running backs.
Jurgens is probably not yet a serious contender to win the Rimington Trophy, but I think Husker fans would love to see him get to the point he is on post-season All-Conference lists. A dominating o-line would go a long way to helping a Husker offense that is long on potential and short on results.
From the athletic department:
Nebraska center Cam Jurgens was named to the Rimington Trophy preseason watch list on Friday. Jurgens was one of 40 centers nationally named to the watch list, as the Rimington Trophy worked with Pro Football Focus to grade the top 40 centers in the country.
A Beatrice native, Jurgens is set for his third season as Nebraska’s starting center in 2021. He has started all but one game for the Huskers the past two seasons. Last year, Jurgens started seven of Nebraska’s eight games and helped the Husker ground attack rank second in the Big Ten in rushing while playing a role in Nebraska posting the highest completion percentage in school history. As a redshirt freshman in 2019, Jurgens started all 12 games, becoming the only Husker freshman to start at center since the NCAA restored freshmen eligibility in 1972. Jurgens paved the way for a Husker offense that ranked third in the Big Ten in rushing and fifth in total offense.
The Rimington Trophy is presented annually to the nation’s most outstanding center. The award is named in honor of former Husker Dave Rimington, who was a consensus first-team All-America center Nebraska in 1981 and 1982, during which time he became the Outland Trophy’s only two-time winner as the nation’s finest college interior lineman.