Mike Riley’s California roots came in handy with Lamar Jackson as the Huskers secured a commitment from the state’s No. 13 player the day before National Signing Day.
Jackson made his decision public Tuesday with a pre-recorded video released by Bleacher Report on Feb. 2. Nebraska primarily beat Pac 12 schools Arizona and Arizona State, among others, for Jackson’s services.
Jackson is a consensus four-star prospect and a top five safety nationally, according to the 247 composite. He’s also the highest-rated prospect from California NU has signed since at least 2002, as far back as the recruiting rankings go.
Jackson now also has the highest ranking of any player in the Huskers’ 2016 class.
The Huskers first targeted Jackson in March 2015 when they extended him an offer. He remained one of their top targets throughout the recruiting cycle, especially after they got him to campus on an official visit Nov. 7 for the game against Michigan State.
Following that trip, Jackson would tell reporters that Nebraska had moved to the top. He was so interested in the Huskers that he took a short trip over to their practices in Northern California leading up to the Foster Farms Bowl even though the coaches weren’t permitted to communicate with him because of a dead period in recruiting.
The NU coaches would have plenty of contact with him down the stretch though, and Jackson rewarded them when he committed just before NSD.
Defensive backs coach Brian Stewart and wide receivers coach Keith Williams were his lead recruiters for NU.
Jackson participated in the 2016 Under Armour All-American game and The Opening camp, both events for the top college football recruits in the country.
NU expects him to start out at cornerback, and at 6-3, 195 there is no doubt that physically he is ready. Speed, agility and football savvy don’t appear to be an issue on film, either. However, corner is a position that is well-stocked at NU, and at the level players like Jackson are expected to perform, there are no sure things. But difference-makers don’t sit. If he proves to be one, he’ll find a spot somewhere.
These are the players who built Nebraska football.
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