Brown set to decide on Monday
Wide receiver Cameron Brown's summer of being unattached ends on Monday. The wide receiver, who decommitted from Nebraska in June, announces his decision with the Huskers still in the picture, along with Alabama, Georgia, Missouri and Ohio State.
Brown's decommitment came after Ohio State offered. The wide receiver began to pickup more interest from other schools late in the spring after his Nebraska commitment, and rather than continue to be courted while with the Huskers, Brown chose to decommit, but said his relationship with the program was still good.
That explains why the 247Sports Crystal Ball sees a return to the 2018 Nebraska class as the most likely outcome, with the Huskers holding 77 percent of the predictions.
The receiver maintained a connection to Keith Williams and the Huskers were able to get Brown and his family on campus for Friday Night Lights to show him a good time and continue to push to get him back in the class.
Nebraska is looking to take at least three wide receivers in the 2018 class and if Brown commits he'd join Manuel Allen and Joshua Moore at this time.
Brown's decision is slated for 1 p.m. CST.
Week 1 of Nebraska’s fall football camp is in the books. What have we learned? Let’s recap a few of the bigger storylines from the first week.
It's certainly not all on Scott Booker, but it's a name Husker fans praying for better special teams play are about to speak of often.
Nebraska's special teams coaching is a group effort, with most assistants each having their own special assignment, having been working on technique with individual players during the first week.
Soon, those individual parts will meet some of Booker's scheme ideas between the lines. Booker, as he put it, is that "40,000-feet view" guy who ultimately has a leading role in putting all those puzzle pieces together to form what is hoped to be a better picture than a year ago.
This, as everyone here knows, is a job that comes with a lot of attention. And, if things aren't going up to snuff, there's a whole lot of scrutiny. Bruce Read certainly received plenty of it in two years at Nebraska. He'd coached special teams for Mike Riley teams for 16 years, but was dismissed the weekend after the Iowa game after uneven results throughout 2016.
Now in comes Booker, whose job coaching special teams is ever bit as crucial as his title as safeties coach. Having handled special teams at Notre Dame, he knows what is coming. He knows those special teams units, and the coach helping lead them, will be under the microscope.
The true tests start in four weeks, but Husker head coach Mike Riley likes the enthusiasm Booker is bringing to the role.
"I love Scott," Riley said. "The enthusiasm for the work, the galvanizing for the players and the unit, has been outstanding. He's really energetic. I think he grabs kids in a really good way mentally, just psychologically, teaches them. It's a good picture."
Aside from the kicking of Drew Brown, the same couldn't be said in the fall of 2016. At the time of Read's dismissal, Nebraska ranked 127 out of 128 teams in the FBS in net punting as true freshman Caleb Lightbourn stepped into the spotlight a year earlier than expected. But it wasn't just punter problems. The Huskers ranked 90th in kick coverage, 106th in punt coverage, and 73rd in punt return average.
So, a change.
Having a kicker with the talents of Brown should help a lot. Having a now fully healthy De'Mornay Pierson-El should also. There are other intriguing options, too. True freshman Tyjon Lindsey has also been fielding punts in practices. Also, there seems to be valid optimism that Lightbourn is going to make a big move as a sophomore punter.
"I think he definitely has as much potential as anybody in the entire country," Brown said. "It's just a matter of mentally being able to take that next step maturity-wise. As everyone knows, he got thrown into a rough situation last year. In my opinion, I don't think that was an excuse to have as many rough moments as he might have had." But Brown can also relate, and he's told Lightbourn as much.
"I had a rough freshman year as well, and I was able to pick it up year by year by year, and I think he'll do the exact same thing."
It will all happen under new direction. If it was a move many thought necessary, it still stood as a bold one considering Riley's long history with Read.
"You know, I was with Bruce a long time," Riley said. "Bruce was a great teacher, worked hard at it. So it's different. Some of the stuff we're doing is different. But I do love that. And he has also brought the rest of the staff together in the parts where they teach this. It's looked good to me. It's functioning pretty well."