Breaking Down: Demornay Pierson-El

Here is a prediction, somewhere down the road there will likely be some people that are surprised by where Demornay Pierson-El came from and how few offers he had out of high school. At least that's what Brian Dohn of Fox Sports Next says could happen.

Brian Dohn, the Northeast recruiting analyst for Fox Sports Next, sees a lot of players. So to remember specifically when you saw Demornay Pierson-El from Alexandria (Va.) West Potomac is saying something about leaving a lasting impression.

"I saw him in 7-on-7s one day this spring and he's a kid that one day people are going to say 'Wow! He only had how many offers?,'" Dohn said.

Dohn said that immediately there were some things that stood out to him about Pierson-El's abilities on the football field. He believes that a team like Nebraska could just bring him in, assess him then put him at a position that fits.

"What stood out to me is his quickness, acceleration and just sharp he was in and out of his breaks. He has tremendous balance to be able to do all that.

"His footwork is good and I wonder he he will end up? He's a kid that can play a number of positions and I am wondering if a school is figuring out what they have in him that they will figure out where they can play him."

Dohn doesn't think that the lack of knowing a finite position for Pierson-El hurts him much. Instead, what he believes has hurt Pierson-El and kept some schools away from offering him to this point is correctable, but will take some work to do.

"I think that the biggest thing that's hurt him is his size. I know what we have him listed at and I think that he's more of a 5-foot-10 guy.

"He is a 170-pound player, but he needs to gain weight. He needs to add size and put on muscle. I think that kept him from picking up a ton of offers."

There is another factor that might have hurt the interest that Pierson-El saw up to committing to Nebraska. While his hometown is outside of Washington D.C. it's not a school in the area known for it's football talent.

"I think also that outside of Washington D.C. in Alexandria that people would think that area would get a ton of traffic. But, West Potomac isn't a school that gets a ton of love. It gets easily overlooked.

Dohn says that there are a lot of places that he could inevitably see Pierson-El lining up and playing at Nebraska. And it may be that he plays multiple roles on the team and is a situational type of player. Dohn says that it never hurts to have a player like Pierson-El on your team.

"I don't look at him just as a kid that you can put in the slot or in as a running back. I also know that some schools looked at him in the defensive backfield as well. But, I see him as a player that would have an impact in the return game as well.

"He's a kid that with his speed factors in not only as a returner, but could play that gunner spot on punt coverage as well. He's a kid that will find his way onto the field in a lot of different roles.

"I am not saying that he's going to have three seasons with 1,000 yards receiving. But, I think that he's one of those kids that you like to have in the program because of his versatility."

Looking at how things have gone this year and Nebraska coming to the Big Ten a few years ago; Dohn says that the strategy for Nebraska in the Northeast is changing. It's changing because of a conference expansion and because the Huskers are trying a new approach with recruits in his area that he's noticed.

"I think that first off that Maryland and Rutgers are headed to the Big Ten conference. You can sell these kids now, like with a kid like Marcus Newby, that you can get them back in front of their family and friends to play a couple of games now.

"One thing that I have seen is that Nebraska is not going all out in the region. Michigan State is very active in the Northeast. Michigan and Ohio State are very active, but it makes sense because they are further east.

"Nebraska is more about giving out some offers and gauging the type of interest there is. There were the Rozier days, but with these kids now they don't have thoughts about Tom Osborne and Tommie Frazier. Nebraska being in the Big Ten is a new concept.

"Nebraska is floating some offers and see if the kid is interest. The key is getting the kid interested, explaining to a player from the D.C. area or the New York area, about why you should go to Nebraska and that's the big thing. I know that Nebraska is trying to get more involved in the area."

Bryan Munson has worked with Big Red Report for 10 years covering recruiting and football and has covered Nebraska recruiting for 12 years.
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