Q&A: A.J. Natter host in-home visit

The Wisconsin defensive end commitment hosted head coach Bo Pelini this week.

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With ten spots left in the class, you had to feel pretty important for Coach Bo to be coming to visit you. I would say you are probably one of the more solid guys in the class.

Natter: "When Coach Cotton told me he was coming up, I was sort of surprised. But, he really wanted to come see me himself, of course, if he wants to come up here, I want him to. I did feel very important and really enjoyed the visit. Overall it was great."

What did you guys talk about?

Natter: "We talked about a lot of things, we had dinner and the topics were endless. We talked about what we do up here and shared some old stories from both of our lives, including my parents. We talked about some football stuff of course, the whole big deal up here in Wisconsin right now is the Wisconsin job. We talked about it a little bit, but not really that much. We also talked about the Nebraska program a little bit. We had a good grasp of it, but it was more in-depth. He really shared what he thinks of the program. We even got into politics (laugh)."

I know you have had personal 1-on-1s with him in his office and visited Lincoln several times, but did you get to know him better with him sitting in your living room?

Natter: "It was really personal. I have been to Lincoln so many times, I had a pretty solid idea that I knew what he was like by talking to him and players, but this gave you a really big sense of what he was like off the field.

"The media portrays him only as a coach and doesn't really talk about him off the field much. Up here in Wisconsin, they think he's a crazy guy. They don't know anything about what he's like off the field. He's a really solid guy. He's a mellow guy and really fun to talk to. He showed a whole different side that not many people get to see."

It had to be an interesting week for you with you being in the heart of Wisconsin?

Natter: "Yup."

You mentioned Coach Pelini and him telling where he thought the program is at? What about you, after watching a lot of games in person and on TV, what did you think of this season and the direction of the program?

"I think overall it was a good season. A 10 win season is not a bad season. Obviously it wasn't the way the game was supposed to go and it wasn't how we wanted it, but it happens. I have been getting grief up here about it, but it was a good season. People have to realize that you are going to have those type of seasons. You finished at the top of the Legends Division – that's pretty impressive. Considering the competition in the league, I honestly think people need to take a breath and look at the facts. I heard people talking about the game this weekend and how they are frustrated by it. Everyone should be frustrated about a loss, but look at the accomplishments over the season as well. It could be better, it can always be better, but the season was not a failure."

Did he talk about any future visits from the assistants?

Natter: "He talked about other coaches coming up, but we didn't set anything up yet. I have no idea when, but they will be in contact. They actually said it could be quite often as well. Of course, I'm still committed. I have had people asking me after the whole ordeal (Indianapolis), but I'm heading to Nebraska and can't wait to get there."

Josh Harvey has covered college football and recruiting for Fox Sports & Scout.com since 2008. He is now the Publisher of Big Red Report, covering Nebraska athletics.
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