|High schoolSt. Bonaventure|
Wide receiver Lavan Alston announced his commitment to the Huskers on Feb. 1, the day after his official visit to Nebraska.
But the 5-foot-11, 173 pound prospect from Ventura (California) St. Bonaventure was plenty familiar with Husker staff far before that — he was an Oregon State commit under new Nebraska coach Mike Riley. And so, Alston made the switch.
"I have decided the best fit for me is the University of Nebraska and will compete and strive to be the best football player I can be on and off the field and will not let down the fans, coaches, teammates and university down!" Alston's Twitter announcement said.
Alston's an ultra-quick route runner — 247 Sports lists his 40-yard dash time as 4.45 seconds — who should do well in a pro-style system. At Oregon State, Riley almost always had guys like Alston who can turn short passes into good gains.
“They see me as a concept receiver that can play outside and inside,” Alston said. “A Brandin Cooks. Someone who can play anywhere on the field.”
Alston is rated a four-star prospect by Scout.com and a three-star by Rivals, 247 Sports and ESPN.
ESPN's insider-only analysis says Alston could make an impact on special teams, too. It says Alston "makes his biggest plays as a return specialist. Is really gifted in this area. Is decisive and tough and is a big play waiting to happen in the return game."
Alston visited Nebraska on Jan. 31, the weekend before signing day. What stood out? He couldn’t identify just one factor.
“The coaching staff, the environment, the school, down to the academics, to the fans, the teammates, the players — everything,” Alston said. “It was something that I could see myself being a part of.”
Eventually Alston did visit. And the Huskers have a capable slot receiver in the fold because of it.
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Our take: He’s fast, able to fire off the line of scrimmage and get by defenders with relative ease. That makes his potential at this level a little difficult to predict. How he handles the physicality of the game — he’s not the biggest guy — is still a big question mark. He appears to be a player who’d benefit from a redshirt year, just to add muscle to his frame and form strategies to handle press coverage. But the NU coaches are encouraged about the possibilities with Alston. They can do lots of things with his skill set.
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