Kearney grad Isaiah Stalbird transfers to South Dakota State

Northern Illinois' Matt Ference, left, has his punt blocked by Nebraska's Isaiah Stalbird.

Former Nebraska walk-on Isaiah Stalbird has found a new home. Stalbird, who entered his name in the NCAA transfer portal on Dec. 9, will transfer to South Dakota State.

"It feels like home and I was really impressed with it," Stalbird said of his recent visit to Brookings. "I fell in love with it, the coaching staff and facilities just everything. It's a great opportunity for me. I had a past relationship with them before Nebraska and it's been a great process."

The 6-foot, 210-pound safety from Kearney completed his redshirt freshman year at Nebraska finishing with 13 tackles, including a team-best 10 on special teams.

The Nebraska coaching staff was high on Stalbird this fall. “He’s made some huge steps,” NU defensive backs coach Travis Fisher said in September. “I’m not talking about baby steps, either. He’s made some huge steps in the room.”

After signing day in 2018, NU coach Scott Frost said he wouldn’t anticipate Stalbird being a walk-on “for too long” if he stayed on the track he was on, saying the defender could be “one of those poster boys” for the walk-on program.

Stalbird chose the Jackrabbits over returning to Nebraska as a walk-on and offers from Wyoming, North Dakota State and Ball State.

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