The state of Nebraska produced seven Division I recruits in the 2018 class, four FBS players and one FCS player. But the best may be yet to come.
This year’s headliners were Husker signee Cameron Jurgens (Beatrice) and Wisconsin signee Bryson Williams (Lincoln Southeast). McCook linebacker Zach Schlager signed with Colorado State, Norris defensive end Bryce Stai with Ohio, Boys Town defensive back Ti’Jaih Davis with South Dakota State and Omaha Concordia's Jayden Scott and Cambridge's Caden Houghtelling with Northern Iowa.
The 2019 in-state class appears to be deeper, and with plenty of star power at the top. Twelve players in next year’s class have already received Division I offers or committed to D-I schools.
Henrich holds 14, with Florida and Notre Dame the latest to offer. The 6-foot-4, 200-pound linebacker also has offers from Nebraska, Penn State, Wisconsin, Iowa, Iowa State, Minnesota, Kansas State, Duke, Kentucky, Purdue, Ohio and South Dakota State.
Hickman, a 6-5, 180-pound tight end, has 10 offers: Nebraska, Indiana, Iowa, Iowa State, Kansas State, Minnesota, Ole Miss, Purdue, Wisconsin and South Dakota State.
Others receiving interest:
» Norfolk Catholic junior defensive lineman Ethan Piper has received scholarship offers from Iowa and Ohio.
» South Dakota has offered Omaha North running back Zander Gray, McCook linebacker DJ Gross, Wahoo Neumann lineman Caden Johnson and Creighton Prep lineman Ryan Bena.
» Omaha North offensive lineman Mekhi Butler, Lincoln North Star athlete Luke Reimer and Gothenburg athlete Trenton Harbur have received scholarship offers from South Dakota State.
» Just over the state line, Council Bluffs Lewis Central junior quarterback Max Duggan is a four-star prospect and the No. 6 rated dual-threat quarterback in the nation, according to the 247Sports composite. Georgia, Ohio State, Nebraska, Penn State, Virginia Tech, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Iowa and Iowa State are some of the 21 offers the 6-2, 190-pound junior has.
And going another year out, the 2020 in-state class is also talented. Five players hold Division I offers, with the headliner being Bellevue West wide receiver Zavier Betts.
The 6-foot-3, 190-pound sophomore holds offers from five power conference schools — Nebraska, Iowa, Iowa State, Minnesota and Purdue, as well as South Dakota State.
Purdue also offered Betts’ teammate Jevyon Ducker. SDSU also offered Ducker, a 5-10 running back.
Xavier Watts, a 6-1, 180-pound receiver from Omaha Burke, holds an offer from Purdue and South Dakota State — which also has offered Kearney athlete Miko Maessner. Lincoln Southeast athlete Isaac Gifford has an offer from Oregon State.