Monday, December 31, 2007


Jesse VerVelde was the first team All-Nebraska quarterback this past season. He is recognized as the best field general in state this past year in high school football. In his only season as the starting quarterback, he led Millard West to a 10-2 season. Jesse threw for 1910 yards and ran for 733 yards. He was responsible for 28 TDs.

Jesse is 6' 180 lbs. He benches 230 lbs and squats 320 lbs. He runs the 40 in 4.6 and has a vertical jump of 28". Jesse played both quarterback and free safety. He had eight interceptions on defense.

We asked Jesse some questions and here is what he had to say.

Favorite Game Memory:

Go ahead TD run against Millard South

Best Athlete You have Played Against:
Jeff Tarpinian when I was a sophomore playing free safety.

Favorite Team (Pro and College):
Wisconsin Badgers and Green Bay Packers

Favorite Player in High School or College Player:
Ron Dayne

College(s) That Are Interested In You:
Colorado School of Mines, UNO, Wayne St, University of South Dakota

What college(s) Are Your Favorite:
Colorado School of Mines


What is Your Favorite Book:
Harry Potter series

Who Is Your Favorite Movie Actor:
Adam Sandler

What Is Your Favorite Movie:
Shawshank Redemption

What Is Your Favorite TV Show:

Which Person Do You Admire The Most:

What Are Your Hobbies:
Fishing, friends, basketball

What is Important For You To Be Successful:

Grades and confidence

Omaha Westside was beaten by Millard North 31-28 in overtime in the semi-finals this past season. They were rated #2 in the state at that time. Velverde helped put Omaha Westside back on the map for Nebraska High School football.

We wish Jesse the best. He will be a good fit to any team. Looks like right now that he likes the Colorado School of the Mines as his choice. We will follow Jesse as he continues his career in college.

Thanks Jesse for answering our questions.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007


Crete won the Class B Championship this past season. Cody Wockenfuss was instrumental in Crete getting to the finals. In the semi-finals Wockenfuss ran back a 60-yard punt and also intercepted a pass in the end zone against Beatrice. Crete beat a tough Beatrice team that night 33-19. They then beat McCook in the finals.

Wockenfuss is 5'10" and 165 lbs. He benches 250 lbs. and squats 375. He has a vertical jump of 30 inches. Crete ran the triple option this past year so the yards were spread around but Wockenfuss still had over 700 yards rushing as a running back. He also had three interceptions on defense playing defensive back.

We asked Cody some questions and here is what he had to say.

Favorite Game Memory:

Returning a punt for a TD my junior year in the Class B State Championship Team

Best Athlete You have Played Against:
Trevor Robinson

Favorite Team (Pro and College):
Chicago Bears and Nebraska

Favorite Player in High School or College Player:
Devon Hester, Chicago Bears

College(s) That Are Interested In You:
South Dakota State University, UNO, Chadron State, Washburn University, Air Force

What college(s) Are Your Favorite:
South Dakota State, UNO


What is Your Favorite Book:

Who Is Your Favorite Movie Actor:
Will Ferrell

What Is Your Favorite Movie:

What Is Your Favorite TV Show:
Sports Center

Which Person Do You Admire The Most:

What Are Your Hobbies:
Sports, Movies, Hunting

What is Important For You To Be Successful:


Crete beat McCook 14-7 to win the Class B Championship this past year. Wockenfuss played a key roll for Crete all year long. We wish Cody well in the future and we hope he finds a good fit for college. Whether it be as a walk-on at Nebraska or any other school, he will be a good fit to the team. He would make an immediate impact as a punt returner his freshman year.

Thanks Cody for answering our questions.

Sunday, December 23, 2007


Zach Ruiz was the quarterback for the Beatrice Orangemen the past two seasons and has led them to the Class B State semifinals both years. Ruiz is 6'3" and weighs 210 lbs. He benches 300 lbs. and squats 500 lbs. He runs a 4.67 40 and has a vertical jump of 34 inches. He was a leader on the football team.

In his senior season at Beatrice, he ran for 480 yards and passed for 1,683 yards. Ruiz passed for 16 TD's and rushed for eleven TD's. He also had six interceptions on defense. With his frame, speed, and leadership ability, Zach would look good in a Nebraska uniform.

Ruiz has continued his leading role for the Orangemen basketball team. The senior scored a game-high 22 points Friday night in leading the Orangemen past the visiting Firth Norris Titans, 51-31. Friday night was the third time in four games this season Ruiz has led the Orangemen offensively.

(What is behind the name Orangeman? I love the name but what does it stand for/)

We asked Zach some questions and here is what he had to say.

Favorite Game Memory:
63-62 OT win over Omaha Gross in the state playoff.

Best Athlete You have Played Against:
Tyrod Taylor-Hampton, VA
Plays for Virginia Tech.

Editor's note: Taylor was a five star 2006 prospect that was recruited by many of the top schools in the country. The question is "When did Zach play against him?" For those that may know leave a comment at the end of this column. Thanks.

Favorite Team (Pro and College):
Virginia Tech, Missouri, Tennessee Titans

Favorite Player in High School or College Player:
Chase Daniel, Missouri QB

College(s) That Are Interested In You:
Missouri, Kansas, Duke, Princeton, Colorado School of the Mines, UNO, Northwest Missouri State

What college(s) Are Your Favorite:
Missouri, UNO, Colorado School of the Mines (For Engineering)


What is Your Favorite Book:
Animal Farm

Who Is Your Favorite Movie Actor:
Angelina Jolie

What Is Your Favorite Movie:

What Is Your Favorite TV Show:
Family Guy

Which Person Do You Admire The Most:
Dad and Mom It's a tie!

What Are Your Hobbies:
Video games, hanging with friends

What is Important For You To Be Successful:

My simple philosophy is to try and do something every day to improve myself and the world around me. (It doesn't always happen every day but it can' hurt to try.)

Zach Ruiz is a pro-style quarterback. He will be a tremendous asset to any football team due to his overall package as a football player. He also can play basketball , so colleges will be after him for that sport also. He has the size to play quarterback or even tight-end in a Division I school.

Thanks Zach for completing our questionnaire.

Friday, December 21, 2007

"My Dream Job" PART 2

List five highlights while you were working at the office?

The people I worked with and met; The Bowl games (2 Alamo Bowls and the Cotton Bowl); Getting to know the players; Meeting the recruits and their families; The perks

What was your proudest day of being in the office?

My proudest day in the office was when my boss, Tim Cassidy, asked me if I would be interested in the Recruiting Staff Asst. position. I was still a student in the office and was looking for a job - I couldn't have asked for anything better. I wasn't ready to leave so another part of my dreams came true!

What game was the most fun when you were in the office?

The best game I have been to during my time here was last year vs. Texas A&M. I will never forget the unbelievable atmosphere and that final catch. It was an amazing feeling to be in that stadium. Texas A&M ranks close behind Nebraska when it comes to a game day - incredible.

What was game day like?

Game days are very busy for us. I was in charge of coordinating the visits for the unofficial visits, as well as assisting with the official visits. I set up University Ambassadors to be paired with each recruit coming in. The official visitors each had a specific schedule - they see a variety of people during their weekend here. The unofficial recruits would come about 3 hours before game time. During this time, they would get a tour of the facilities and eat at the Nebraska Training Table, where the athletes eat each day. An hour before game time, I would lead them onto the field and they would watch warmups from the sidelines. After the Tunnel Walk, we would lead them up to their seats. Following the game, we would take the official visitors out to eat, to more appointments, etc. It was a very hectic, but exciting time for us in the recruiting office!

Was this your dream job?

This was my dream job. I remember back in high school, I would have given anything to be a part of this wonderful program. God directed my paths and my dreams come true. I will never forget my experience there.

What did you learn working at the office that you can take with you for the rest of your life?

I have learned so much from working there. One of the big things that I remember Bo saying back in 2003 is "You can only control what you can control." So I try to remember that through my every day life. I also have learned to cherish the people around me, and always be positive and friendly to those I meet. You never what kind of impression you will make on a person, or when/if you will get the chance to see them again.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

"Her dream job" PART 1

A little over nine years ago my daughter Sarah and I drove up to where the football team was practicing near the old Buck Beltzer field. We looked through the wire fence as two offensive units were going against two defensive units. We were hoping to get a look at this writer's cousin's boy who was to start in the offensive line that year. His name was Ben Gessford.

Sarah said I would do anything to work around the football team. She meant it. She said it would be her dream job!

Well things worked out her junior year. She got to be the student secretary for Frank Solich. Many days she would call me to tell me about a former player she got to meet in the office or she got to talk to on the phone. She loved Mary Lynn, Coach Solich's secretary. She was also the secretary for Tom Osborne for many years.

That year, 2003 turned out to be Solich's last. She was heart-broken for a long time because when you work in the football office, you are working with family. She admired Frank Solich, his assistant coaches, and the football staff. She was fortunate to go to the Alamo Bowl that year and she was there when Bo Pelini won his first game as head coach.

Bill Callahan was hired as head coach. Tim Cassidy was put in charge of football operations. He was basically Sarah's boss. In 2005, Sarah took the job as Recruiting Office Assistant. She was directly involved with recruits and their coaches and families. You'll see more about her job later.

Sarah got to go to two more bowl games. In 2005 and 2006, NU went to the Alamo and Cotton Bowls. She liked both bowls. Sarah was close to Bill Callahan and his staff also after being with them for four seasons.

Last Saturday was Sarah's last day at the football office. Because of the long hours, she decided in August she needed to make a change, as she is getting married this spring. She needed to switch from her "dream job" to a real job. This writer knows how much passion she had for her job. He knows how much she will miss the coaches, players, staff and their families.

We have asked Sarah to answer some question which she has agreed to answer. Hopefully you can learn more about the NU football office from the interviews.

Her is the question for Part I:

What will you miss most of not being involved anymore?

There is a lot that I will miss - I have had such a great experience. I'll miss being around the coaches and players, meeting the recruits and their families, the amazing people that I have worked with and met, walking out onto the field with the recruits on game days - I could go on and on :-) I'll just say, almost everything.

Was the football office like family? Why?

The football office is very much like a family. You spend a lot of hours there and you get very close to the people you work with. You spend holidays with them and you go through a lot together. It's a very special place.

What was your responsibility at the football office?

I was a Recruiting Staff Assistant in the Football Office. Basically, I did a lot of work 'behind the scenes'. Some of my job duties included sending correspondence to our recruits, coordinating official visits and helping with them on the weekends, assisting the coaches with various projects, expense reports, compliance paperwork and supervising our 6 student assistants.

Who was some of your favorite high school coaches you worked with?

The coach I worked with the most was Larry Martin - the head football coach at Omaha North High School. He is a great mentor for his athletes and would do everything he can to help them succeed. He is the epitome of a great head football coach.

Where are you going to work now?

I will be working at National Research Corporation as a Project Assistant in Client Services.

Was it fun working with your sister, Kim?

Working with Kim was one of the biggest highlights of my career in the Football Office. We have become a lot closer since she started and the best part was being able to share the experience with her. It is fun for her to see what I do and what goes on there. She has developed herself into one of the bright spots in the office and will continue to grow and learn from the amazing experience she will continue to have there.

Sport Shorts

Jason Whitlock says when Sherron Collins gets healthy, Kansas will be unbeatable. It is good that NU plays Kansas twice early in Big 12 play. Collins has the most potential of any of the Kansas players to succeed in the NBA, including Brandon Rush.

  • See the latest on fantasy football.

  • The Minnesota Vikings have their safety in trouble with the law. Drugs, traffic citations, etc, He will play today as management collects the facts.
  • Minneapolis StarTribune

  • The running backs coach for NU will be named after the bowl game. He most definitely is coaching for a team in a bowl game or otherwise why would he wait.

    Saturday, December 15, 2007

    NU has most impressive win under Sadler

    Nebraska beat 16th ranked Oregon at the Quest Center today 88-79. This is only the Ducks second loss with the other loss coming against ranked St. Mary's on the road. This is the first victory against a non-conference ranked team rated 16th or higher since the 1994-1995 season when we beat 15th ranked Michigan State 96-91 in overtime.

    Prior to the game today, NU wass 8-34 against non-league ranked teams all-time, with all eight wins coming at home. The list of victories over rank non-conference opponents includes:

    Year Team (Rank) Score

    1958-59 Marquette (17) 62-60

    1964-65 Michigan (1) 74-73

    1969-70 Duquesne (7) 82-77

    1983-84 Arkansas (15) 67-54

    1990-91 Michigan State (5) 71-69

    1994-95 Michigan State (15) 96-91 (ot)

    2002-03 Minnesota (20) 80-60

    2006-07 Creighton (20) 73-61

    Aleks Maric will become the second best rebounder in NU history. After his seven rebounds today, he only needs 14 more to be in second place. Here are the all-time leaders:
    Nebraska Career Rebound Leaders (since 1952)

    No. Player (seasons) Rebounds

    1. Venson Hamilton (1996-99) 1,080

    2. Leroy Chalk (1969-71) 782

    3. Dave Hoppen (1983-86) 773

    4. Aleks Maric (2005-present) 768

    Rich King (1988-91) 761

    6. Andre Smith (1978-81) 753

    7. Chuck Jura (1970-72) 740

    8. Carl McPipe (1976-79) 723

    9. John Turek (2002-05) 682

    10. Rex Ekwall (1955-57) 679

    Today was the most points ever scored by a Doc Sadler NU team (89). The previous high was last year vs. Oklahoma State of 85 points.

    The Huskers were led in points by Aleks Maric with 23 points. Ryan Anderson had 21.Jay-R Stowbridge had five assists and Sek Henry had some nice passes today. He had four assists. Prior to the game NU was ranked 12th in defense scoring with 53.9. Oregon was ranked 3rd in the nation with a 89.6 scoring average.

    NU only had seven turnovers for the game with Cookie Miller getting four of them.

    Nebraska plays North Carolna Central next Saturday in Lincoln.

    Some statistics are complements of

    Friday, December 14, 2007

    Sport Shorts

    Steve Fairchild, a former quarterback and assistant coach at Colorado State, has taken the head coaching job there. He has been the offensive coordinator for the Buffalo Bills. See other coaching news at this site.

  • Norm Chow of the Tennessee Titans and former USC offensive coordinator may be headed to UCLA as head coach. Auburn's Terry Bowden may also be interested.

    Kevin Sumlin, an Oklahoma assistant coach, may become the new coach for the University of Houston.

    Karl Dorrell, the former UCLA coach, may be headed to Duke. David Cutcliffe, offensive coordinator for the Tennessee Vols, is also being considered.

    Larry Fedora, offensive coordinator for Oklahoma State, will be the next head coach for Southern Mississippi.

    That makes two Big 12 South teams from Oklahoma losing their offensive coordinators.

    Jim Grobe of Wake Forest is on a list for the Michigan job. Glen Mason has expressed interest in the Michigan job. He doesn't seem likely to get the job.
  • footballrumormill


  • The Big Red Network has a great site to read up to date NU info. See their Big 12 bowl preview. This writer would like to thank them for putting "The Recruiting Story" on their site.
  • Big Red Network

  • News from Texas A & M is that our own Zac Taylor will be a graduate assistant at Texas A & M. Their new head coach is Mike Sherman, former head coach of the Green Bay Packers. Sherman's last job was with the Houston Texans. Sarah Sherman, who is Mike's daughter, plans to marry Zac Taylor in April. He should be a great fit as a GA. Zac will make a great head coach someday as he is a student of the game. It will be fun to watch his progress.

    Bo Pelini talks to the Lincoln Journal Star!

    Pelini talks about recruiting and when he is leaving to go coach for the LSU. He discusses his process in helping Marlon Lucky decide whether to go pro. Carl Pelini will probably be named defensive coordinator and Marvin Sanders will play a key role. He talks about the key elements that make a defensive team successful. He is anxious to review players on film and in spring workouts. He isn't interested on what went wrong with last year's defense. He is looking to the future. "We have had success where ever I have been and it isn't going to change. If you don't have defense, you don't have anything. I will know exactly what is going on on the offensive side of the ball. I will work closely with Shawn Watson. "
  • Lincoln Journal Star

  • The Kansas City Royals make some moves. First they sign Jason Smith, a .188 hitter from last year in 40 games. Second they sign back Brian Duckworth, an average reliever, who was 3-5 and a 4.63 ERA last year. Not two players who will change a franchise. Role players.
  • Fox Sports

  • The Nebraska basketball recruits are:
    Nebraska Men's Basketball

    Roburt Sallie

    (G, 6-4, Sacramento, Calif./City College of San Francisco/Laurinburg Institute/Patterson School/Valley)

    * Two-Time All-Metro selection at Sacramento Valley High School
    * Delta League MVP in 2003
    * Helped prep school teams to 74-3 record over two seasons, including prep school national title in 2005

    Christopher Niemann (F/C, 6-11, Schelklingen , Germany /Erdgas Ehingen/Urspringschule)

    * Averaging 5.0 points and 4.8 rebounds per game through six games in 2007-08
    * Averaged 3.8 points and 2.8 rebounds per game last season

    Roburt Sallie is the real deal and will make an immediate impact on the team. Niemann is a shot to find a big man as Maric will be gone. It may be difficult for him to qualify academically. Stats aren't impressive with 5PPG and 5 rebounds but he is 6'11". Why doesn't Matt Hill just transfer to Nebraska from Texas???????

    Other fall signees:
    Nebraska Volleyball

    Sydney Anderson (S, 6-0, Salt Lake City, Utah/Alta/Utah)

    * U.S. Women's A2 National Team (2007)
    * AVCA West Regional Freshman of the Year at Utah (2006)
    * Mountain West Conference Setter of the Year (2006)
    * Utah Gatorade High School Player of the Year (2005)

    Allison McNeal (MB, 6-2, Schulenburg , Texas /Schulenburg)

    * No. 4 Senior in the Nation by (2007)
    * U.S. Youth National Team (2007)
    * Texas Class 2A State High Jump Champion (2007)

    Kaitlynn James (OH, 5-11, Louisville , Ky. /Assumption)

    * No. 13 Senior in the Nation by (2007)
    * First-Team Mizuno/Volleyball Magazine All-America honors (2006)
    * U.S. Junior National A2 Team (2007)

    Jordan Haverly (OH, 6-1, Cherry Hill , Ill. / Rockford Keith Country Day)

    * No. 20 Senior in the Nation by (2007)
    * U.S. Junior National A2 Team (2007)
    * Two-Time All-State Selection (2006, 2007)

    Nebraska Women's Basketball

    Harleen Sidhu (F, 6-1, Surrey , British Columbia , Canada / Fleetwood Park )

    * Canadian National Elite Development Academy Invitee (2007)
    * British Columbia Provincial Team member
    * Averaged 31 points, 6 rebounds per game (2006-07)

    Layne Reeves (G, 5-11, Lubbock, Texas/Trinity Christian)

    * First-Team Texas All-State (2007)
    * Led High School to Three Straight State Title Game Appearances
    * Father, Ron Reeves, Four-Year Starting Quarterback at Texas Tech

    Nebraska Baseball

    Erik Anderson (RHP, 5-11, 185, R/R, Prairie Village, Kan./Barton County CC/Shawnee Mission East)

    * 3-2 with seven saves and a 2.17 ERA over a school-record 27 appearances in 2007
    * Second-Team All-Jayhawk League West, as he fanned 76 and walked 19 over 49.2 innings
    * No. 9 nationally among junior college pitchers in saves and held foes to a .191 average

    Cody Asche (INF/OF, 6-1, 185, L/R, O'Fallon, Mo./Ft. Zumwalt West)

    * Second-Team All-Missouri infielder in 2007
    * Hit .424 with three homers, three triples, nine doubles, 24 RBIs and 25 runs scored
    * Third-Team All-Metro by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch; First-Team All-Gateway pick as a junior
    * Among Top High School Prospects in Missouri for 2008 MLB Draft by Perfect Game USA

    Cory Burleson (C/INF, 6-2, 195, S/R, Midland , Texas/Midland Christian)

    * All-Texas as a junior, batting .396 with a .550 on-base percentage in helping his team to state semifinal bid
    * Among Top High School Prospects in Texas for 2008 MLB Draft by Perfect Game USA
    * Three-year starter at quarterback, setting school-record with 2,529 passing yards and 27 touchdowns as senior

    Boomer Collins (UTL, 6-0, 185, R/R, Waxahachie , Texas /Waxahachie)

    * Three-year starter as an outfielder, earning first-team all-district accolades all three campaigns
    * District Newcomer of the Year (2005); District Sophomore of the Year (2006)
    * Helped DBAT team to 2006 AABC Mickey Mantle World Series title
    * Among Top High School Prospects in Texas for 2008 MLB Draft by Perfect Game USA
    * Starting quarterback for high school team, throwing for 1,389 yards and 15 touchdowns as senior

    Shane Dyer (RHP, 6-3, 180, R/R, Eaton , Colo. / South Mountain CC/New Mexico /Eaton)

    * Among Top Junior College Prospects in Arizona for 2008 MLB Draft by Perfect Game USA
    * 2-2 record and a 4.28 ERA in 30 innings at New Mexico in 2007
    * First-Team All-Colorado in final two years at Eaton High School
    * 27-3 mark in high school and was a 24th-round selection by the Colorado Rockies in the 2006 MLB Draft

    Seth Hood (INF, 6-1, 200, R/R, Moline , Ill. / Moline )

    * Two-Time All-Area and MVP of American Legion team in 2006
    * Multi-sport standout who was also an All-Metro football player
    * Academic All-Stater who was recruited as a football player by several Big Ten schools

    Kash Kalkowski (RHP/INF, 6-1, 195, R/R, Grand Island , Neb. / Grand Island )

    * Honorary Captain of Lincoln Journal Star Super-State team in 2007
    * 6-2 with a 0.81 ERA, as he struck out 56 in 43 innings in 2007
    * Led state with a .506 batting average along with five homers, 34 RBIs, 31 runs scored and 11 stolen bases as a shortstop, while leading Grand Island to a 22-5 record and a state tournament appearance as a junior
    * No. 2 High School Prospect in Nebraska for 2008 MLB Draft by Perfect Game USA

    Kale Kiser (INF, 5-10, 175, S/R, Plano , Texas /West)

    * First-Team 95-A District and Honorable-Mention All-State as a junior
    * Hit .452 with 40 runs scored, 19 stolen bases and 17 RBIs
    * Led DBAT summer team with a .397 average with 45 runs scored in 2007
    * Among Top High School Prospects in Texas for 2008 MLB Draft by Perfect Game USA
    * Helped DBAT team to the 2006 AABC Mickey Mantle World Series title

    Jake Kuebler (INF/RHP, 6-4, 195, R/R, Lincoln , Neb. /Southeast)

    * Three-Year starter at Lincoln Southeast, earning All-City honors each of the last two seasons
    * Second-Team Super-State by Lincoln Journal Star in 2007, hitting .429 with three homers and 25 RBIs, while also posting a 1.52 ERA with 29 strikeouts over 27.2 innings
    * Cousin of 2005 National Player of the Year and current KC Royal Alex Gordon

    Nick Ludemann (RHP, 6-5, 195, R/R, LaVista , Neb. /Creighton Prep)

    * Top High School Senior in Nebraska for 2008 MLB Draft by Perfect Game USA
    * Started on PI Midwest's Legion title team in 2007 and runner-up squad in 2006, earning the team's lone win in the 2006 regional with a complete-game four hitter
    * Invited to Area Code Games in Long Beach , Calif. , a tryout with the U.S. Junior National Team in 2007

    Curtis Petersen (RHP, 6-4, 180, R/R, Aubrey, Texas/Denton Ryan)

    * District 5-4A Pitcher of the Year in 2007, going 9-1 with a 1.52 ERA
    * All-State pitcher who led Dallas-Fort Worth area in wins and recorded 56 strikeouts
    * No. 24 High School Prospect in Texas for 2008 MLB Draft by Perfect Game USA
    * Chosen as alternate for USA Junior National Team in 2007

    Colt Simon (LHP, 6-1, 205, R/L, Grand Prairie, Texas/Howard College/UT-Arlington/South)

    * No. 1 starter at Howard College in 2007, and pitched at UT-Arlington in 2006
    * 7-1 with a 0.77 ERA and 81 strikeouts over 58 innings Grand Prairie South High School in 2006
    * Co-District 6-5A Pitcher of the Year with 2007 MLB First-Round pick Blake Beavan

    Cade Thompson (1B/OF, 6-3, 200, L/L, Eatonville, Wash./Central Arizona College/Eatonville)

    * Hit .356 with 31 RBIs and 43 runs scored to earn NJCAA All-Region 1 and All-Conference honors in 2007
    * Selected to the Arizona Junior College Sophomore All-Star Game in fall of 2007
    * All-Class, All-State honors as a senior at Eatonville High School in Washington

    Nebraska Softball

    Ashley Hagemann (RHP, Omaha , Neb. / Elkhorn )

    * Three-Time First-Team All-Nebraska and Honorary Captain of Omaha World-Herald's team in 2006 and 2007
    * Led Elkhorn to four straight Class B state titles, including a 30-1 record as a senior
    * Class B career strikeout leader
    * Went 25-1 with a 0.38 ERA as a senior, while hitting .536 with 10 doubles, six homers and 37 RBIs

    Nikki Haget (INF/OF, Omaha , Neb. / Elkhorn )

    * Two-Time First-Team All-Nebraska
    * Led Elkhorn to four straight Class B state titles, including a 30-1 record as a senior
    * Led Class B and ranked No. 2 in the state with a .550 batting average
    * Led Class B with 55 hits and 43 runs scored

    Kirby Wright (C, Cortlandt Manor, N.Y./Hendrick Hudson)

    * One of the top catchers in the state of New York and just the second NU softball recruit in history from the state
    * Third-Team Class A All-State honors from the New York Sportswriters Association in 2006
    * Hit .436 with 12 doubles, two homers, 38 RBIs and 23 runs scored in 28 games last season
    * Led Hendrick Hudson to Class A section title and state semifinal appearance with 27-2 record

    Nebraska Wrestling

    Jon Burns (141 Pounds, Raleigh, N.C./Cardinal Gibbons)

    * Ranked as the No. 9 junior in the nation across all classes last year
    * 140-Pound Champion at National High School Coaches Association Junior National Wrestling Championships
    * Went 65-0 and won the North Carolina state 140-pound title as a junior

    Romero Cotton (184 Pounds, Hutchinson , Kan. /Hutchinson)

    * One of the Nation's Top Recruits at 184 Pounds
    * Three-Time Kansas High School State Champion (171, 2007; 160, 2006; 145, 2005)
    * Running back for Three-Time Kansas State Champion Hutchinson High School
    * Rushed for 1,398 yards as 22 touchdowns as a junior

    Riley Essay (133 Pounds, Alliance , Neb. / Alliance )

    * Third-Place at 125 pounds at Nebraska High School State Championships in 2007
    * Fifth-Place at 112 pounds at Nebraska High School State Championships in 2006
    * Fourth-Place at 103 pounds at Nebraska High School State Championships in 2005

    Tyler Koehn (174 Pounds, Pittsburg , Kan. / Pittsburg )

    * Freestyle All-American at USA Wrestling Nationals in 2007
    * 152-Pound State Champion at Pittsburg High School in 2007
    * 3.8 GPA

    Josh Ihnen (197 Pounds, Sheldon , Iowa /Sheldon)

    * Freestyle All-American at USA Wrestling Nationals in 2007
    * Runner-up at 171 Pounds at Iowa High School State Championships in 2007
    * 3.99 GPA

    Tuesday, December 11, 2007

    Diamond in the rough

    Nebraska needs a quarterback recruit for the 2008 class but who thought we might have a great chance to get Sean Renfree from Arizona. He has decommitted from Georgia Tech. He is an Elite 11 QB. Former NU commit Blaine Gabbert completed for 45-102 for 614 yards and five TDs this fall. He also had five interceptions. He is now going to Missouri. See what the Midwest Coast Bias has to say and look at his stats this fall:
  • Midwest Coast Bias

  • Jason Whitlock says it is time for the Chiefs to lose!
  • Jason Whitlock

  • Jeff Jamrog could be taking Vacancy in the Nebraska football office left by Tim Cassidy.
  • Husker Extra
  • Saturday, December 08, 2007

    The Nebraska Recruiting Story

    Just for fun, we are going to look a year down the road. Joe Ganz, Marlon Lucky, Nate Swift, Zach Potter, Barry Turner and the many others are graduated. These are the guys that generally you want this year's recruits to replace and or move up the depth charts. Who is left and are we bringing in the right players. Of course with this analysis, we have to make some assumptions that the recruits we have now will all end up coming to NU. We have also made some guesses as to what positions they will play. The recruits include 14 defensive players and 10 offensive players.

    Let's start with the offense for the 2009 season.

    1) Patrick Witt
    2) Zac Lee


    This is a concern. Can we convince a top notch QB to run the offense. When coaches change, this is the hardest position to recruit because of the uncertainty of what the new offense will be. What kind of quarterback will fit the new offense? Nebraska needs to identify at least one quality QB to be part of the 2008 class. There is an opportunity for a good QB to have a year of learning the system before the 2009 class is in the books. Need 9 (A high number reflects the need to recruit this position yet this year.)

    Running Back
    1) Quentin Castille
    2) Roy Helu

    Collins Okafor

    Only one running back has verbally committed. We have good talent at this position but it is a position where you could lose two or three to injuries. Nebraska needs to recruit another running back. Need 8

    1) Justin Mackovicka


    We have three other walk-on FB's that will be on the team. The fullback needs to touch the ball by running or receiving 5-8 times each game. We have 11 men on the field and we need to utilize all of them. Remember the time Steve Kriewald ran the ball in 2004? He went 55 yards on one play against Oklahoma. He ran three times that year for 54 yards. An 18 yard average. Dane Todd ran one time in 2006 and that is four attempts for 54 yards the past four years. Need 8

    H-Back/Tight End

    1) Mike McNiel
    2) Dreu Young

    Ben Cotton
    Tyson Hetlzer
    Kyler Reed

    The addition of Cotton boost this position. McNiel and Young should develop well. We need to keep Hetzler and Reed as recruits. Need 4

    Wide Receiver (X)

    1) Menelik Holt
    2) Will Henry

    Wide Receiver (Y)
    1) Niles Paul
    2) Curenski Gilleylen

    Norian Hilburn

    If we continue to run a west coast offense, we need another quality receiver in this recruiting class. In two years, our depth will be surprising thin. Need 8

    Left Tackle
    1) Mike Smith

    Left Guard
    1) Keith Williams

    1) Jacob Hickman

    Right Guard
    1) DJ Jones

    Right Tackle
    1) Jaivorio Burkes

    Bryce Givens
    Rick Henry
    Dan Hoch
    Baker Steinkuhler
    Brandon Thompson

    We have some good talent in the line in two years. We also have a good recruiting class in this area. Let's hope we keep them.

    So on offensive, the recruiting needs are quarterback, wide receiver, and possibly fullback.

    DEFENSE in 2009

    Left defensive End

    Right Defensive end
    1) Pierre Allen

    Eric Harper
    Simi Kuli
    Cameron Meredith
    Riley Reiff
    Doug Rippy
    Josh Williams

    Five recruits are projected to play defensive end. We should have this very important position covered. The defensive ends are the key position on defense.

    Nose Tackle
    1) None


    We will need to depend on other existing players to develop. It is possible that a defensive end recruit will develop into a line position. Also there could be a switch of an offensive lineman to defensive lineman.

    Defensive Line
    1) Ty Steinkuhler
    2) Ben Martin

    Joseph Townsend

    Joseph Townsend is an excellent player but he has to get himself eligible. Again, we could use a couple of recruits in the defensive line to shore up this position. Trouble is we don't have that many more spots open.
    Interior line Need 8.

    Sam linebacker

    1) Blake Lawrence

    Will linebacker
    1) Major Culbert

    Mike Linebacker
    1) Philip Dillard

    Will Compton
    Sean Fisher
    Micah Kreikemeier
    Shaun Mohler
    Doug Rippy

    We have a good bunch of linebackers coming in with the 2008 class. Let's hope we keep Mohler and Compton. Need 3

    Left Cornerback

    1) Anthony Blue

    Right Cornerback
    1) Anthony West

    David Whitmore

    Blue and West will be exceptional players. Adding Whitmore will help. Prince Amukamaru is the fastest man on the team and will be a factor on special teams and defense in 2008. Need 5

    Strong Safety

    1) Larry Asante

    Free Safety
    1) Ricky Thenarse
    2) Ricky Hagg

    Keelan Johnson
    John Leverson

    Can you imagine how good Thenarse will be for Bo Pelini? Talk about the perfect fit. Two good recruits to go with some great talent. Need 4


    1) Alex He
    2) Adi Kunalic


    We will need to recruit a punter in the next year or so. A walk-on this year would give us some experience.

    In 2008 we will have seven defensive and seven offensive players back.

    However for the purposes of analyzing the 2008 recruits, we have actually moved forward to the 2009 season.

    There are definite needs yet with this recruiting class at quarterback, running back, and receiver on offense. We need to pick up one of each. On defense, we need two defensive linemen. Getting a good punter as a walk-on would be beneficial.

    Tuesday, December 04, 2007


    The Howells football team have been a power in football for many years. They were D-1 champions six years in a row from 2000-2005. There isn't another team in the state that has had the success that Howells has in the past eight years.

    In 2007, all-stater Jeff Pokorny played for another great Howells team. Pokorny has a huge frame at 6'3" and 285 lbs. Pokorny benches 335 lbs, squats 455 lbs, and runs the 40 in 5.2. He has a vertical jump of 24 inches.

    Jeff, who was coached by Mike Speirs, is an offensive and defensive lineman. He was one of the Nebraska's best. He is very strong, has speed, and quickness. He has all the qualities of a great leader and a team player.

    We asked Jeff some questions:

    Favorite Game Memory:
    Recovering the game winning fumble in double overtime in the quarterfinals of the state playoffs.

    Best Athlete You have Played Against:
    Joel Nixon

    Favorite Team (Pro and College):
    Nebraska Cornhuskers/Indianapolis Colts

    Favorite Player in High School or College Player:
    Eric Burenheide

    College(s) That Are Interested In You:
    Kansas State, Nebraska, University of South Dakota, Wayne State College, Chadron State College

    What college(s) Are Your Favorite:
    Kansas State, Nebraska


    What is Your Favorite Book:
    Something for Joey

    Who Is Your Favorite Movie Actor:
    Samuel L. Jackson

    What Is Your Favorite Movie:
    Friday Night Lights

    What Is Your Favorite TV Show:

    Which Person Do You Admire The Most:
    My brothers

    What Are Your Hobbies:
    Sports, hunting, and working on cars

    What is Important For You To Be Successful:

    I think to be successful you should be able to pick up your teammates when they are down and be willing to sacrifice everything to reach your ultimate goals.

    Jeff Pokorny is the real deal. He has shown this through his efforts at Howells. Jeff had 81 tackles this season as a lineman which is exceptional. We will be interested in seeing if Jeff Pokorny is playing for the University of Nebraska next fall. He would be an asset to the program.

    Thanks Jeff for completing our questionnaire.

    Saturday, December 01, 2007

    Bo Pelini is 1-0 as a head coach!

    In Bo Pelini's one game as head coach he won. This was the Alamo Bowl vs. Michigan State on December 29, 2003. Now Pelini comes back to Nebraska to finish his business. See the stats from that game and the story after the game. Does it bring back memories? Nebraska had three interceptions that day. Story complementary of

    Dec 29, 2003

    Michigan State 3 0 0 0 3
    Nebraska 3 14 0 0 17

    D Dyches 29 YD
    D Rayner 46 YD
    C Ross 2 YD RUN (D Dyches KICK)
    C Ross 6 YD RUN (D Dyches KICK)

    Team Statistics Michigan State Nebraska
    First downs 13 20
    Rushes-Yards 23 - 18 54 - 229
    Passing yards 156 160
    Sacked-Yards lost 5 - 37 0 - 0
    Return yards 3 30
    Passes 21 - 39 - 3 8 - 17 - 0
    Punts-Average 8 - 46.4 7 - 42.9
    Fumbles-Lost 0 - 0 1 - 0
    Penalties-Yards 5 - 53 8 - 69
    Time of Possession 29:31 30:29

    Player Statistics

    Michigan State Cmp Att Yds Int
    Smoker, Jeff 21 39 156 3

    Nebraska Cmp Att Yds Int
    Lord, Jammal 8 17 160 0

    Michigan State Att Yds
    Dortch, Tyrell 9 31
    Hayes, Jaren 6 13
    Smoker, Jeff 8 -26

    Nebraska Att Yds
    Ross, Cory 37 138
    Lord, Jammal 10 79
    Kriewald, Steve 2 10
    Davies, Judd 2 4
    Fluellen, Isaiah 1 2
    Team, - 2 -4

    Michigan State Att Yds
    Alexander, Aaron 8 63
    Brown, Kyle 4 41
    Shabaj, Agim 4 31
    Scott, Jerramy 1 18
    Knott, Eric 1 10
    Kavanaght, Ziehl 1 8
    Hayes, Jaren 1 -6
    Dortch, Tyrell 1 -9

    Nebraska Att Yds
    Fluellen, Isaiah 4 84
    Pilkington, Ross 3 70
    Keiser, Dusty 1 6
    Game Story

    SAN ANTONIO (Ticker) -- Bo Pelini got Nebraska to play like
    the "Blackshirts" of old.

    The 21st-ranked Conhuskers shut down Michigan State's
    high-powered offense and used two short second-quarter touchdown
    runs by Cory Ross to defeat the Spartans, 17-3, in the Alamo

    Ross rushed for a career-high 138 yards on 37 carries for
    Nebraska (10-3), which was playing in its NCAA-record 35th
    consecutive bowl game.

    Named interim coach when Frank Solich was fired at the end of
    the regular season, Pelini is not considered a serious candidate
    for the job. But as the Cornhuskers' defensive coordinator, he
    devised a game plan that stifled Michigan State quarterback
    Jeff Smoker.

    "Our big key was to pressure Smoker with a four-man rush,"
    Pelini explained. "That allowed us to play back in coverage and
    tackle well. We pressured more than I would have thought."

    After the teams traded field goals in the first quarter, Ross
    scored on runs of two and six yards, giving Nebraska a 17-3
    halftime lead.

    "We pounded the ball on the ground," Ross said. "Our offensive
    line created holes."

    Jamaal Lord rushed for 79 yards on 10 attempts for the
    Cornhuskers, including a career-long 66-yard scamper that set up
    Ross' second score. Afterwards, he expressed support for

    "This 10-3 season was coach Solich all the way," Lord said. "I
    didn't care about my passing, 17-3 is all that matters."

    The fiery Pelini gave Michigan State (8-5) an opening when he
    was flagged for an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty with the
    Spartans facing 4th-and inches in the fourth quarter. Pelini
    was upset the officials did not give the ball to Nebraska after
    Smoker fumbled a snap.

    The penalty gave Michigan State a first down at the Nebraska 34
    with more than seven minutes left. But two plays later,
    cornerback Pat Ricketts sealed the win with the Cornhuskers'
    school-record 31st interception, which also is tops in Division

    Nebraska recorded three interceptions and five sacks while
    holding Michigan State to 18 rushing yards and 174 total, more
    than 200 below its average.

    "They're an awful good football team," Spartans coach John L.
    Smith said. "They're very big, strong and athletic. ... We were
    an inch away on some of the big plays that could have made this
    a great night for us."

    Smoker completed 21-of-39 passes for 156 yards. His final pass
    for the Spartans was intercepted by cornerback Fabian Washington
    with 1:08 remaining.

    "Jeff has done a lot for us this year. Without him, it would
    have been a long year," Smith said. "He gave us an opportunity
    to win."

    Safety Josh Bullocks' interception gave Nebraska a first down at
    the Spartans 36 early in the second quarter and led to Ross'
    first TD.


    Brian Hegert is a great athlete. He excelled for Kearney in football and also plays hockey for the Tri-City Storm. Kearney was the Class A champions in 2006 and made it to the semi-finals in 2007. The were beaten by Omaha Central who ended up the Class A 2007 champions.

    Brian, who was coached by Brandon Cool, was an offensive and defensive lineman. He was one of the Nebraska's best.

    Hegert is 5' 10" and 230 lbs. He benches 410 lbs and squats 585 lbs. He has run a 4.9 40 and has a vertical jump of 26 inches. He is very strong, has speed, and quickness. He has tremendous size for a hockey player.

    We asked Brian some questions:

    Favorite Game Memory:
    Winning the State Championship game as a Junior.

    Best Athlete You have Played Against:
    Ronnell Grixby

    Favorite Team (Pro and College):
    Nebraska/Denver Broncos

    Favorite Player in High School or College Player:
    Mike Hart

    College(s) That Are Interested In You:
    Colorado School of the Mines, UNO, UNK, Morningside

    What college(s) Are Your Favorite:
    Colorado School of the Mines and UNO


    What is Your Favorite Book:
    Lord of the Flies

    Who Is Your Favorite Movie Actor:
    Will Farrell

    What Is Your Favorite Movie:
    Friday Night Lights

    What Is Your Favorite TV Show:
    Sports Center

    Which Person Do You Admire The Most:

    What Are Your Hobbies:
    Ice Hockey, hanging out with friends

    What is Important For You To Be Successful:


    Brain Hegert will be an asset for any college. He has shown this through his efforts at Kearney. Brian had 175 tackle, one interception, and 11 sacks on defense during his career playing Class A ball. It will be interesting to see where Brian ends up to play college football. He will be fun to follow in the next few years.

    Thanks Brian for completing our questionnaire.

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    Jason Whitlock says Stoops and the Sooners are SCARED of the Missouri Tigers.
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  • Bo Pelini will let his offensive coordinator call the offensive plays. This will be a huge hire for him. As soon as Pelini is hired, it will be interesting, with his connections, who he will hire for assistants. The assistant coaches will determine most of the success of a football team. I do see Pelini calling the defense himself. That is is strong point and he will utilize it.

    Osborne would like to announce the new coach tomorrow but will he be reluctant to do it on a Sunday. We may have to wait until Monday. That would give Pelini a head start to put together his coaching staff. We won't see the fall out of over 20 players quitting like four years ago. I wonder what the impact would have been if they all would have stayed. We lost a lot of offensive and defensive lineman in the process.