The average high school basketball fan in Nebraska may not have heard of Bellevue West's Frankie Fidler before Tuesday.
That's when Fidler received an offer from UNO while taking an unofficial visit.
"It was good. They didn't show me everything but they showed me around Sapp (Fieldhouse), the bookstore and cafeteria," Fidler said. "I liked it. Everything is very new so I liked it a lot."
The 6-foot-5 junior is the latest in the 2021 class to receive a Division I basketball offer.
"It's amazing. My first one and they really showed a lot of interest in me,” he said. “Coming into the unofficial I was hoping they would offer and they did, so I am grateful that they did."
UNO assistant coach Pat Eberhart is the Mavs lead recruiter on Fidler. The two have developed a good relationship.
"He direct messaged me early in August and now we text about every other day,” Fidler said. “I look forward to building a relationship with their staff."
A Division I offer and recruiting attention from a handful of schools is something that a little over a year ago seemed far from reality for Fidler, who played sparingly as a sophomore for the Thundebirds. Since then he's had a five-inch growth spurt and made improvements to his game.
"I've wanted to be really good my whole life. Last year I wasn't too happy about how the school season ended up so I put in a bunch of time over the summer and I'm going to continue to do that,” he said. “It definitely helped that I grew and it gave me more confidence and helped me to keep working hard.”
Sept. 9th was the first day of the 2019-20 Division I recruiting calendar. Since then UNO, Valparaiso, Utah State, North Dakota and Southern Illinois watched Fidler work out. Another Division I school, North Dakota State has begun contacting Fidler.
"I was up at 6 a.m. five mornings in a row to go to workouts so I had to manage my time a little better with my schoolwork and sleeping,” he said. “So far I am handling it well and taking it all in right now."
North Dakota has invited him to their junior day on Nov. 9th. He has also talked to Utah State about visiting but hasn’t set a date yet.
Fidler’s best attribute is moving without the ball and coming off ball screens and making shots. He’s kept his guard skills and is learning to become a wing player.
“I want to become a better shooter from distance and get my ball handling more consistent,” he said. “I’m also working on being a better communicator on the floor.”
Photos: Division I basketball and football recruits in Nebraska for the 2020 class
These are the basketball and football players from Nebraska in the 2020 class who have at least one Division I scholarship offer. Did we miss anyone? Let us know by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org