We are a week away from Memorial Stadium, folks. A week away from Scott Frost’s first game. Akron, are you ready? The Huskers are.
Or at least the ones who are left.
Lucky Number Seven
Seven different players have left this team this week, all in their own way.
Before I get into the list, I do want to wish all these players the best with their future, both on and off the field. Whether this is related to injuries, playing time or academics, I’m sure there were difficult decisions for all parties. Best wishes, guys.
Former top recruit Avery Roberts was granted a scholarship release. Some say he wasn’t in football shape and simply fell down the depth chart. Roberts was behind the likes of Will Honas, Luke Gifford, Dedrick Young and the up-and-coming Colin Miller.
Another top signee from Mike Riley’s tenure, Jalin Barnett, suffered his fifth concussion. He has made the decision to step away from football. I’m not sure he was even in the two-deep on the depth chart, so this may not make a direct difference on the field.
A similar route was taken by the biggest name. Running back Tre Bryant was a star for a game and a half last year, where he carried the ball 51 times for 299 yards and two touchdowns.
Unfortunately, major knee issues took him to the sideline last season, and he has never recovered. While he has been with the team up until now, he was reportedly in pain at nights and throughout the day. While it will hurt the Huskers on and off the field, the breakout of Maurice Washington and slimming of Devine Ozigbo, along with a deep backfield, should help.
Another linebacker, senior Sedrick King, was not part of the over the summer practices for personal reasons. He will not be returning to the program and will graduate in December.
Will Jackson, a JUCO cornerback, left the team due to issues over his place on the depth chart. Jackson committed to the team late in June but was expected to have a shot a starting corner spot. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be the way it worked out. The Huskers are left a little thin at corner depth with his departure.
Dominick Watt, a speedy receiver, failed to qualify academically for Nebraska and instead will be going to junior college. While Coach Frost did his best to get him to the team, it appears it wasn’t enough. It’s possibly the staff will keep their eye on him and recruit him later down the road. This is similar to Willie Canty, an OT recruit, and his situation.
Lastly, the final departure hurts the Huskers more in the future than the present. Three-star running back Thomas Grayson, has decommitted from Nebraska and reopened his recruitment. While it is a disappointing loss, many think this is merely a sign that Nebraska is in a good spot with a higher-sought-after back.
Light at the Tunnel
Let’s not make it all bad news. Due to the departures, three current Huskers got put on scholarship. Congratulations are due to running back Wyatt Mazour, linebacker Jacob Weinmaster and wide receiver Bryan Reimers.