It’s been another active seven-day stretch in the world of Husker recruiting, as Nebraska handed out more than two dozen scholarship offers from Feb. 23-29. At least 14 of those offers went out on Leap Day.
With the coaching staff finalized and the March 12 Junior Day approaching, the Huskers are closing in on 200 total scholarship offers handed out to the 2017 class. Let’s take a closer look at the 25 recruits that received offers over the last seven days:
Parrella makes his mark
New defensive line coach John Parrella hit the ground running in recruiting. Immediately after landing the job, Parrella began following Husker recruits on Twitter, most of whom were offered in the week before he was hired. Since officially being announced on Feb. 24, he’s been able to extend his own offers, and he targeted at least seven 2017 prospects:
>> Defensive end Joshua Kaindoh, Bradenton, Fla.: Originally from Baltimore, Kaindoh transferred to the IMG Academy before his junior season. He’s a five-star prospect and the nation’s No. 1 weakside defensive end, according to the 247sports composite. Ohio State, Penn State, Notre Dame and Maryland are considered some of the early favorites to land him.
>> Defensive tackle Guy Thomas, Miami: Thomas told Scout that Nebraska is one of two teams standing out for him after the Huskers offered last week. Louisville is the other. Thomas had 54 tackles, 14 sacks and three forced fumbles as a junior.
>> Defensive tackle Isaiah Johnson, Warner Robbins, Ga. (Northeastern Oklahoma A&M): Johnson had 53 tackles for NEO last season, including five for a loss and three sacks. He also forced a fumble, recovered one and intercepted a pass. Nebraska and UCF are the only two to offer him so far, and he’s already spoken to Parrella about attending the spring game, according to Huskers Online.
>> Defensive tackle Jay Tufele, South Jordan, Utah: Tufele was one of four 2017 defensive linemen to receive an offer from the Huskers on Monday. He’s the nation’s No. 3 defensive tackle, according to the 247sports composite, featuring a double-digit offer list with Pac 12 and Big Ten flavor. USC, UCLA, Utah and Michigan are some of the early standouts.
>> Defensive tackle Kurt Hinish, Pittsburgh, Pa.: A three-star prospect, Hinish currently has Penn State as his leader. Notre Dame is No. 2 with a visit to South Bend coming soon. He plans to make a commitment during the summer, so the Huskers will have to work to get him on campus in the near future.
>> Defensive tackle Eric Crosby, Virginia Beach, Va.: Last month, Crosby released a top five that included Virginia Tech, NC State, Tennessee, Alabama and Clemson. He’s considered a top 10 defensive tackle nationally. The Huskers are also recruiting his teammate at Ocean Lakes, wide receiver Tahj Capehart.
>> Defensive end Luiji Vilain, Alexandria, Va.: Another four-star defensive lineman from Virginia, Vilain has had a hot month for his recruitment. He’s recently landed offers from schools like Florida, Georgia, UCLA, Alabama, Texas A&M and Michigan. The Huskers’ offer came Monday.
Athletes, defensive backs, receivers
Among the new offers this past week, nine went to players ranked either as defensive backs, receivers or athletes that could play either side of the ball.
The Huskers targeted a pair of corners from Big Ten country in Amir Riep (Cincinnati) and Donovan Johnson (Detroit). Riep already holds more than 30 offers and is considered one of the top prospects in Ohio. Nebraska was the eighth offer for Johnson, and he told Rivals the Huskers have his attention.
The other defensive back offers went to players from the South. That includes two from New Orleans — Brad Stewart and Tre Swilling. Both are four-star prospects with several offers from SEC schools. The Huskers also offered AJ Terrell (Atlanta) and AJ Harris (Madison, Ala.).
The Huskers hit the West Coast on Monday to offer Jaylon Redd, an athlete from Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. He’s a 5-foot-9 cornerback/wide receiver with schools like Michigan and Oklahoma high on his list. NU also dipped into New England for wide receiver Tarik Black, a four-star from Connecticut with more than two dozen scholarship offers.
Roshauud Paul also picked up an NU offer Monday. Some of the recruiting services rank him as a quarterback, but a 6-foot dual-threat passer doesn’t fit the mold of quarterbacks Nebraska recruits under Mike Riley. That means the Huskers are probably interested in him as an athlete.
The Huskers offered three tight ends this week, two from high school and another junior college prospect.
Grant Calcaterra landed his on Friday. He’s a three-star prospect from California that attends the same school (Santa Margarita Catholic) where former Nebraska wide receivers coach Rich Fisher is now the head coach. Kurt Rafdal was the other high school tight end to get an offer. The Carmel, Ind., product also has Big Ten offers from Illinois, Indiana, Maryland and Purdue.
Nebraska is the only power five school thus far to offer Jeremy Patton. Originally from Indianapolis, Patton is now at Arizona Western where he had 17 catches for 316 yards and four touchdowns in 2015 for the powerhouse junior college. He’s the second junior college tight end Nebraska has offered — Mike’Quan Deane is the other.
The Huskers also handed out at least five offers to recruits from the 2018 class this past week.
NU was offer No. 1 for Grahm Roberts, the younger brother of 2017 target Avery Roberts. The older Roberts visited for last year’s spring game, and he plans to make a return trip soon so his brother can check out Lincoln.
The Huskers plan to recruit Calabasas, Calif., even after the 2017 recruiting cycle. With guys like Keyshawn Johnson Jr., Darnay Holmes and Tristan Gebbia as high priorities, NU also extended an offer to their younger teammate Brendan Radley-Hiles. 2016 will be his first season at Calabasas though after transferring from Bishop Gorman in Las Vegas.
John Parrella also kicked off his 2018 recruiting with an offer to Trevor Trout. He’s an early four-star prospect, according to 247sports and Scout, from just outside the 500-mile radius in St. Louis.