That is why coming out of Central High School in Omaha, Harland Gunn was surprised that it wasn't the local Cornhuskers that offered him his very first scholarship to play collegiate football.
To receive his first scholarship was something that was of great importance to Gunn and his family. Which is why when he received his first – from the University of Miami – he committed soon after.
Gunn told CanesTime.com back in March, 2006, "…it's the simple fact that they came at me first. They saw the potential before anyone else," as the reason why he was committing to the Hurricanes.
Twenty months later, the 6-foot-2, 300 pound Gunn is still a ‘Cane more then half-way through his first semester as a student athlete. His role on the football team has been primarily playing on the scout team at right guard. However, his biggest hurdle is in the classroom.
"My major is mechanical engineering," Gunn said. "So, I have some really hard classes. It is all hard, hard work."
On the football field, coaches have told Gunn that they want him to improve on the mental aspect of the game. Without having to play this season yet, Gunn has done just that.
"I am really strong already," Gunn said. "The main thing is developmental. It is of my technique and the mental aspects. It is a physical game, but it is more mental then anything. So, (coaches) just want me to be ready mentally and the rest will come."
He has looked to not only coaches, but team mates to prepare him mentally for game time.
"I look to them as coaches," Gunn said. "When I do something wrong, I ask them questions, they are like my mentors since they've been here so long."
"So far (Tyrone) Byrd and (Andrew) Bain, help me out along the way. All of them do, really."
For those that may question Gunn and how a freshman who hasn't been asked to play would practice knowing he wouldn't get time, he prepares for every game as if he has a point to make.
"I don't really look at it from the standpoint (of playing or not)," Gunn said. "I know one day I will have to play. When I go out here (on the practice field), I come out motivated and play like I have to earn the coaches respect."
Gunn was able to take one road trip this season to help his development mentally. It was to Norman, Oklahoma where he was able to get a first hand account of what it felt like to have tens of thousands of fans screaming not for you, but against you.
"It was great because being a recruit, you go through the stadium and it is on your side. But when we went in there they were against us. So it was a learning experience and I had a lot of fun."