New Nebraska safeties coach Bob Elliott has recruited a variety of positions in the last decade. Some of those signees have gone on to be key contributors, while others struggled to ever find the field.
Elliott — a 63-year-old veteran who has coached since the 1980s — has been a primary or secondary recruiter on 12 players in the last decade, according to a 247Sports list. Eight of those commits came during a seven-year stint at Notre Dame, with four more from his time at San Diego State from 2006-08.
Rivals.com credits him for seven additional recruits at Iowa State during his stint there in 2010 and 2011.
Perhaps Elliott’s best work came while promoting the powerful Fighting Irish brand. Four-star wide receiver Equanimeous St. Brown said “Yes” to Elliott as part of the 2015 class and spent last fall as the team’s best playmaker. For the 2013 class, Elliott helped convince five-star safety Max Redfield to come to South Bend, Indiana, where he enjoyed a generally successful career before he was kicked off the team just before his senior year began for off-field misconduct.
Here’s a look at Elliott’s recent recruits and where they stand now:
Class of 2015
Tristen Hoge (Pocatello, Idaho): Elliott was the primary recruiter for this four-star center, who was also offered scholarships by the likes of Florida, LSU, Stanford and UCLA. The junior-to-be is vying for a starting spot on the Notre Dame offensive line after a redshirt season and quiet redshirt freshman year.
Equanimeous St. Brown (Anaheim, California): The four-star wideout broke out as a sophomore last fall, leading Notre Dame in catches (58), receiving yards (961) and receiving touchdowns (nine). Elliott was his primary recruiter, outdueling USC, Miami and LSU among others.
Class of 2014
Nick Watkins (Dallas): Injuries have thus far derailed the career of the former four-star cornerback, for whom Elliott was a secondary recruiter. Nebraska, Alabama, Florida State, Ohio State and Oklahoma were other schools who had offered the prep standout. Watkins will be a redshirt junior this fall at Notre Dame.
Drue Tranquill (Fort Wayne, Indiana): The four-star safety/outside linebacker signee played all 12 games in 2016 and ranked second among Irish defenders with 79 tackles after injuries wiped out his first two seasons. Elliott helped sway Tranquill — already named a 2017 team captain — to Notre Dame as a secondary recruiter.
Tyler Luatua (La Mirada, California): Elliott held a complementary part in landing the four-star tight end over other prominent suiters like Nebraska, Alabama and USC. Luatua has seen the field each season but has yet to make a significant impact.
Jonathan Bonner (Chesterfield, Missouri): As a junior last year, the former three-star defensive end played all 12 games (starting one) and registered nine total tackles. He figures to see his role expand some for his senior year.
Class of 2013
Max Redfield (Mission Viejo, California): The highest-rated recruit for Elliott — who played a supporting role in snagging him — flashed elite physical skills as a safety while struggling to lock in mentally during his Notre Dame career. He was fourth on the team in tackles as a junior, then was removed last summer on charges of possession of a handgun without a license. He’s a possible NFL draft pick in April. Nebraska, Oklahoma and USC were among those who offered him out of high school.
Cole Luke (Chandler, Arizona): The four-star cornerback started all 12 games last season and collected 48 tackles while setting himself up for a potential pro career. As the primary recruiter, Elliott beat challenging schools like Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas and Michigan.
Class of 2012
Adam Pavlenko (Tempe, Arizona): Rivals called him a three-star linebacker. But he never played for Iowa State, instead transferring to Grand Canyon University to wrestle.
Kane Seeley (Perry, Iowa): The in-state native and former two-star linebacker developed into a dependable senior starter in 2016, tying for the team lead in tackles. He largely entered games with the second-unit defense in the three years prior.
Class of 2011
Henry Simon (El Cajon, California): A two-year ISU career saw the two-star junior-college prospect make 23 stops at defensive tackle.
Kenneth Lynn (Dallas): He wrapped up his five-year Iowa State run in 2015 as a reserve defensive back. Career stats for the former three-star corner: 46 tackles, 12 pass breakups and one fumble recovery.
Ernst Brun (Walnut, California): The former three-star tight end earned All-Big 12 honors in 2012 thanks to 26 catches before injuries cut short his next campaign. He went on to spend time with the Omaha Mammoths and the NFL’s Washington Redskins.
David Irving (San Jacinto, California): He played in 32 career games, making 44 tackles (three sacks) and forcing a fumble. Irving came to Ames as a two-star defensive end.
Darian Cotton (Mount Pleasant, Iowa): Made an impact as a reserve during his final three seasons, ending in 2015. Recruited as a three-star “athlete,” he made 34 tackles (2.5 for loss) as a senior in 2015.
Class of 2009
Jacob Driver (Encinitas, California): The three-star linebacker largely peaked as a special-teams player during his career at San Diego State.
Osmond Nicholas (Oceanside, California): An eight-catch, 82-yard campaign in 2011 was the highlight at the college level for the former two-star receiver.
Class of 2008
Brian Stahovich (San Diego): A two-star prospect out of high school, he evolved into one of the best punters in the nation. Elliott wooed him to SDSU over Virginia, which had also extended a scholarship.
Class of 2007
Aubrey Smith (West Hills, California): Utah was in on the two-star safety, who eventually chose the Aztecs but never did anything memorable on the football field.