Willie Hampton became the first commit of Nebraska's 2017 class on March 9, 2016, committing just eight days after receiving a scholarship offer from the Huskers.
Hampton, a 6-foot-1, 220-pound linebacker from Plantation, Florida, and his commitment set off the usual round of celebration from the Husker recruiting staff. Nebraska coach Mike Riley posted that night about a "big addition" to the Husker family.
"He's long, he can run and he's violent at the point of attack," said Brendan Kent, Hampton's defensive coordinator at Oxbridge. "We ask our outside 'backers to be able to rush the passer but also get back in coverage, and Willie can do both. He's everything you look for in a linebacker."
Hampton held offers from Central Florida — coached by former Husker QB Scott Frost — as well as Indiana, Florida Atlantic and Western Michigan at the time of his commitment. He ran a 4.53-second 40-yard dash, 4.53-second 20-yard shuttle, 35.3-inch vertical jump and 43-foot kneeling powerball toss. That adds up to an impressive 117.66 SPARQ rating, the highest at The Opening Rating Day in Miami in February.
Hampton also throws shot put for his school's track and field team.
Linebackers coach Trent Bray is Hampton's primary recruiter. Hampton hadn't yet visited Lincoln when he made his commitment, but that first trip came on an official visit for the Oregon game on Sept. 17.
After the visit, Hampton tweeted, "Yesterday's game was too live. I'm loving it over here."
Hampton transferred from the Oxbridge Academy in West Palm Beach, Florida, to American Heritage High School in Plantation in July 2016.
Here's a Hudl highlight reel for Hampton:
Photo: Neil Hayes/Hayes Pix
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