Recruiting: Persistence pays off as Nebraska lands versatile receiver Demariyon Houston

Demariyon Houston is Nebraska's fourth wideout in the 2019 cycle.

Nebraska coaches never gave up on Demariyon Houston, even while he spent nearly five months committed to Texas. The receiver rewarded their faith Wednesday morning, announcing that he will join the Huskers.

The composite three-star receiver from Oklahoma City Millwood made the decision public on social media, becoming NU’s first commit since the December early signing period and the 27th overall in the 2019 class. The 6-foot, 165-pound prospect is NU’s fourth wideout in the cycle.

Since parting ways with the Longhorns in early December, Houston officially visited Minnesota before doing the same in Lincoln on Jan. 18. He didn’t go on potential trips to Penn State and Colorado the last two weeks even after the schools showed interest.

Millwood coach Darwin Franklin told The World-Herald this week that NU running backs coach Ryan Held should get credit for investing time in Houston ever since Nebraska offered last March. Held joined coach Scott Frost and offensive coordinator Troy Walters for an in-home visit in late January.

“That’s one thing that Coach Frost’s staff does a great job with is they target guys, then they develop relationships,” Franklin said. “Even after he had committed to Texas and then Texas pulled off of him, they continued to communicate with him and keep their relationship.”

The move paid off as the Huskers land an athlete 247Sports pegs as a four-star receiver and the 319th prospect overall. He’s a straight-line burner — he recorded a verified time of 10.71 seconds in the 100 meters — and made 35 catches for 772 yards and 11 touchdowns last fall. Every recruiting service ranks Houston as a top-six prospect in the state of Oklahoma.

Franklin said Houston has the versatility to play outside or in the slot, where his route-running improved as a senior. Houston made his choice based on considerations beyond schemes and playing time.

“One thing Demariyon has said to us many times over and over again is he wants to be a better man after football, and football is not the only deciding factor for him,” Franklin said. “He wants to make sure he’s around great men to make him a better man later on.”

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