Although wide receiver/defensive back Donovan McDonald wasn't announced as part of Nebraska's walk-on class on Signing Day, the 5-11, 178-pound athlete from Fork Union (Virginia) Military Academy is on NU's campus and participating in winter workouts, according to Fork Union head coach John Shuman.
McDonald participated in Fork Union's post-graduate football program last fall, looked a variety of schools, and settled on enrolling at Nebraska. Shuman contacted NU defensive line coach Hank Hughes — whom Shuman said had recruited Fork Union every year when he coached at Harvard, Connecticut and Cincinnati — and McDonald is now working out with the team, Shuman said. He could be a part of Nebraska's spring camp as a walk-on.
"It wouldn't surprise me if, in a year and a half, people are talking about this kid," Shuman said. "Like, 'Where did he come from?' He's a rangy athlete who can play wide receiver or defensive back."
In terms of athleticism, Shuman compared McDonald to former Husker/current Detroit Lion defensive back Mo Seisay, who also played for Shuman at Fork Union. A lot of top-end players have played for Shuman; in recent years, the program is probably best known for sending Cardale Jones and Carlos Hyde to Ohio State.
Prior to playing at Fork Union, McDonald was part of a top high school team in Montclair, New Jersey that included one-time Nebraska commit Darius Slade. McDonald was also a strong high school track runner. According to NJVarsity.com, McDonald had offers to Massachusetts and Albany out of high school but chose to attend Fork Union.
Shuman said he has a long-standing relationship with Hughes. He's also been to Nebraska; his son was the 2008 Virginia Tech team that beat the Huskers.
"One of the best stadium experiences around," Shuman said, adding he rather liked the Runza sold in Memorial Stadium.