The defensive secondary is the next-to-last stop in my overview of the '22 Nebraska football team. Last week, the subject was the Husker linebacker room. I opined that Husker assistant coaches Mike Dawson (OLBs) and Barrett Ruud (ILBs) must be happy with their bunch of linebackers going into the fall.
There's a good chance Husker secondary coach Travis Fisher is also excited for this year's crop of defensive backs.
He knows he has a talented group, but he may be concerned with the experience factor.
After all, the Huskers did lose some talent and experience from last year's group, including CB Cam Taylor-Britt (Cincinnatti Bengals), safety Deontai Williams (Seattle Seahawks) and safety Marquel Dismuke (exhausted his eligibility).
Together, these players accounted for 143 tackles, 5 TFLs, 14 PBUs, 6 INTs and 2 blocked kicks. That's a big hole to fill.
Thank goodness the transfer portal has a front door. Coach Fisher picked up some players in the off-season who should be able to contribute right away.
Among his new players is CB Tommi Hill (6-0, 205, SO) from Arizona State. Last year, Hill played in 11 games for the Sun Devils, making 9 tackles and returning 4 kickoffs for 79 yards. Those are not dazzling numbers, but Hill does bring some experience to a position that already has talent.
Omar Brown (6-1, 190 JR.) is another CB who brings a lot of experience, albeit from Northern Iowa, an FCS football program. For three years, Brown was a key player in the Panthers' defense, registering 140 tackles, 13 PBUs and 8 INTs. He appeared in 29 games over those three years.
Fisher was also able to lure Kaine Williams, a (6-2, 203 RFR) safety from the University of Alabama. A four-star recruit out of Louisiana in the class of 2021, he played on special teams in one game last season as a true freshman.
Fisher also landed a JUCO transfer in Javier Morton (SO) from Garden City CC. Morton played in nine games last year and had 20 tackles, 1 sack, 2 PBUs and 1 fumble recovery.
There's more good news for the '22 Husker secondary. Returning are such players as cornerbacks Quinton Newsome (JR), Braxton Clark (JR) and Tyreke Johnson (SO). Johnson, if you recall, was a five-star player who transferred to Nebraska from Ohio State in '21.
At safety, Myles Farmer (SO), DeShon Singleton (SO), Noa Pola-Gates (SO) and Isaac Gifford (SO) return. Defensive backs like Marques Buford (SO) and Koby Bretz (RFR) should provide some depth in the secondary.
Let's hope Coach Fisher's group can develop by the time the Sooners roll into Lincoln in September.
Another bombshell falls
As if last year's Supreme Court NIL ruling wasn't enough to shake up the world of college athletics, this month we learned about powerhouses USC and UCLA deciding to bolt from the Pac 12 for the greener (money) pastures of the Big Ten Conference. Like Dorothy, we aren't in Kansas anymore.
And don't be surprised if there is more to come. Most people are betting Notre Dame will be the next Big Ten shoe to drop. What about Oregon and Washington? And Stanford? Hold on to your seats.
What's causing this shakeup? Money is the biggest element. The SEC's getting Texas and Oklahoma to join them is another reason. And there is also the battle between ESPN and the Fox Network for college football coverage.
I'll be writing more on this subject in the weeks to come. For now, brace yourself, college football fans. These shakeups have just begun.
Huskers get another ‘Barry’ good WR
Just a few days ago, WR Barry Jackson from Ellenwood, Georgia, announced his commitment to the '23 Husker recruiting class. As a sophmore, Jackson ran a 10.39 100-meter dash. As WR coach Mikey Joseph would say, "You can't coach speed!" Welcome to Nebraska, Mr. Jackson!
If you and your family are looking for a movie all ages can enjoy, you might want to rent or buy "American Underdog." It is the story of former NFL quarterback Kurt Warner and his journey from stocking shelves at Hy-Vee to being a Super Bowl MVP. Your entire family will like this movie about faith, family and football. Don't miss it.
How ’Bout Them Huskers
This week, our podcast includes an in-depth review of the Nebraska secondary room. Will and I also talk about the latest Husker recruit (Barry Jackson) and the USC-UCLA move to the Big Ten Conference. Here's the link.