The big news on Wednesday was Nebraska getting a satellite camp set up in Atlanta with Georgia State University. This is a tremendous opportunity for Nebraska to get out and see players that normally wouldn’t be able to get to Nebraska for camp.
There are some folks who are very enthusiastic about this idea – Nick Saban is not one of them though – however there are clearly some reasons to temper the enthusiasm for now. Please just hear me out.
I have been to one of these satellite camps before. Obviously it wasn’t Nebraska. It was actually Oklahoma State’s. And it wasn’t with another school. Rather, they pulled in with their bus to Richardson (Texas) Berkner and hosted the camp right there are the high school.
Having a camp that summer at Berkner was at the very least convenient for Oklahoma State. That year they happened to have a four-star, 6-foot-5 and 230-pound defensive end who happened to be the Dallas Morning-News top defensive player in the area in 2005-06.
That player was Ugo Chinasa.
He didn’t commit at the camp to Oklahoma State, but he did commit in the weeks leading up to signing day to the Cowboys. And maybe that’s why Saban is upset. Because one of the schools that Chinasa chose Oklahoma State over was Alabama.
The Cowboys did receive a commitment that day. He was an offensive lineman who made a strong impression and really looked the part. Trent Perkins from Alice (Texas) didn’t have a great career in Stillwater unlike Chinasa, but the Cowboys did get his commitment.
And in the coming days the second part of the satellite camp tour was in Houston. Look at the class of 2006 for Oklahoma State. It’s littered with Houston players starting in mid-June.
This is the plus side. This is also a situation that isn’t apples to apples with how Nebraska will have to operate in Atlanta with Georgia State either. Oklahoma State showed up at Berkner HS and set up their own camp that day. Nebraska will have to work with another school.
And you wonder what kind of pull Georgia State will really have with the players in the state of Georgia. Nebraska has had a recent wave of success in the Peach State, but it’s not been with the top recruited athletes from there.
The Huskers have used their evaluation skills to get into the state – as well as the personal connections between Coach Charlton Warren – to find some players who are talented. Warren is gone now though to North Carolina.
So, what should be expected? Will a camp draw a name from the state like Scout.com Top 300 player Jaleel Laguins? Laguins, if you don’t remember, has already visited Nebraska. And if a player like Laguins won’t be in attendance will his team mate, Zeb Noland, who doesn’t have a Nebraska offer, be there?
This is where Nebraska fans should level set their expectation and hope for some of the wave to continue in the state-being able to pull players out and bring them to Lincoln without Warren being on the staff anymore. Additionally, the Nebraska fans shouldn’t get upset when players like Laguins aren’t there.
Why? Because there will be others. They may not be 2016 players, but Nebraska is in the state and a camp like this in Atlanta they are going to get inner-city players out and there. I think that the big hope is that a player like Alex Davis, who emerged last year for Nebraska, comes to light.
If the 5-star players won’t be in attendance then Nebraska is going to have to look at those who will be there. You could see the evaluation skills of Mike Riley and his staff in the final weeks leading up to signing day this past February are very good. They have a good eye. But, you have to see it.
And what they means is that a player like Davis isn’t going to have his name said over the PA in Memorial Stadium this fall and probably not next fall either. However, the potential is there. Nebraska will likely draw a number of players like Davis at all positions and they will have to choose which spots they have the luxury to wait on a player to develop or if they need a guy that could play a little sooner.
Bottom line here with the satellite camp is that it will provide an opportunity to keep the wave going through Atlanta. Nebraska and Husker fans should be excited about it. Just don’t expect that a camp like this makes landing a Laguins or another player like him this year a real possibility. Not yet anyway.