Nebraska head coach Scott Frost has made it clear that he and the Huskers don’t plan on revamping their recruiting strategy just because of new NCAA rules that allow prospects to take official visits in the spring.
Frost reiterated that point on Wednesday’s Big Ten coaches’ spring teleconference, pointing to NU’s bread and butter: home games at Memorial Stadium.
“I want kids to be able to come and experience what a game’s like here,” he said. “There’s very few gameday experiences like we have in Lincoln. I think it’s a great time for kids to come visit us.”
Naturally, Frost admitted, there will be some exceptions over time. If a player the Huskers really insists on using his official visits and committing early, that puts the decision on the school whether to try to get the prospect to campus unofficially (where the player pays his own way) or to use a visit.
But there’s another element in Frost’s mind: He said he and the Huskers are not in a big hurry to stack up a full class of commits in the spring.
“I’m personally not crazy about getting too many kids committed in May/June because you have to hold on to them for a long time,” he said. “When a kid commits here, I want it to be final. I want him to be done looking. We’re going to be committed to them and not yank their scholarship if somebody better wants to come or if they get hurt. If a kid belongs to us, they’re ours, and we’re going to honor that. And if a kid’s committed to us, we expect him to honor that as well.
“Sometimes getting a kid committed early leads to a long haul in making sure they stay committed all the way through December or February.”
That's not going to be a problem for the Huskers in the 2019 cycle. Currently, NU has four players verbally committed for 2019. Three are from the state and two — outside linebacker Garrett Nelson (Scottsbluff) and athlete Garrett Snodgrass (York) — were on board before Frost was hired. The most recent verbal pledge came Monday from running back Thomas Grayson (Tulsa, Oklahoma).
The staff is essentially still playing catch-up after being hired in December, because other schools were able to start building for 2019 while NU used December and January virtually exclusively to land 18 new 2018 commitments along with three transfers and several walk-ons.
For a look at the opposite end of the spectrum, consider that Ole Miss has 15 verbal commits for 2019 currently.
The early expectation is that the Huskers’ 2019 class will be another sizable one, perhaps somewhere in the low- to-mid-20s.