On a weekend when incoming football recruits should have stolen the headlines, it was the Nebraska basketball squad that took the front page of Big Red Report by storm.
Assistant coach Ronald "Chin" Coleman hosted several of his former players from his AAU squad Mac Irvin Fire in Chicago, including one of the nation's elite players in 2014, Jahlil Okafor.
"We are definitely going to support him. But I think the guys really like Nebraska. With Coach Chin (Coleman) there, kids are going to probably head up there," said Mac Irvin Fire coach Mike Irvin. "We like to hear the fans are excited about guys when they come in and we want them to support the kids, so we have been hearing some great things about Nebraska."
Coleman was Mac Irvin Fire's head coach from 2005-11. During his time with the squad, he coached multiple McDonald's All-American and four Illinois Player of the Year award winners.
"He definitely has the tools to get Chicago kids at Nebraska," said Irvin. "They are in the Big Ten now and Nebraska gets the fan support needed. They have a new practice facility and a new arena coming. Kids want to play in the Big Ten, so it's a place they will look at."
In addition, players known early playing time might be possible.
"I think guys want to be part of the turnaround there and know it will be pretty special," said Irvin. "Here in Chicago, we want to support Coach Coleman. We want him to be known as the one of the best assistants in the country. That comes with getting players and we want to get players over there. I think it's a win/win situation for Nebraska and for the guys here, because they want to play in the Big Ten against schools like Illinois, Ohio State, Indiana, and Northwestern."
In all five players from Mac Irvin Fire visited over the weekend. Here is a scouting report on all five from head coach Mike Irvin.
(Class of 2014) Jahlil Okafor - "He's dominant. He's unstoppable really. He's one of the best big man to come out of Chicago in the last 20 years. He's definitely a dominant big man."
(Class of 2013) Kyle Davis - "Probably the fastest player in the country from end to end. He's got tremendous speed and can really get up and down the court, hitting the holes. He brings it defensively, so with his speed he's one of the best in the country."
(Class of 2013) Sterling Brown - "He's the do it all type of player, both inside and outside. He can even be a backup point guard. Sterling Brown could be a special player. He's got his brother in the NBA. Brown could play multiple positions, so I think he will be a special player for somebody."
(Class of 2014) Josh Cunningham - "Wow, Josh was one of our projects. When he first came over to Morgan Park, nobody knew who Josh was. He was a guy who ended up growing three inches in one year. His upside is unbelievable. He's only been on the seen for a year. We think the way Josh works in the gym and the way he's improving, he's going to be a top 25 player before it's all said and done. He's making some huge strides."
(Class of 2014) Miles Reynolds - "He's a scoring guard. He puts the ball in the basket. That's what he is about."