Lincoln, Neb. – After a solid spring, Nebraska true freshman safety Aaron Williams, an early enrollee, received live first-team scrimmage reps on Tuesday night.
Williams was filling in for senior safety Byerson Cockrell, who is limited from hitting drills while recovering from offseason shoulder surgery. Cockrell should likely be back before the Huskers’ matchup with BYU.
“I think Aaron has done a tremendous job, coming in during the winter and had a great spring,” said junior captain Nate Gerry at Big Ten Media Days.
A true freshman wasn’t supposed to sniff the two-deep in the secondary this season, with experienced veterans returning for first year secondary coach Brian Stewart.
Williams didn’t get the memo. He appears to be all but a lock to be in the two-deep this fall.
The Georgia native impressed defensive coordinator Mark Banker this spring, earning first-team reps multiple times and becoming a staple on the third-team secondary.
“He’s picked up things quickly,” Banker told reporters, including the Omaha World Herald. “The physical part of it is the pleasing part of it. He matches up pretty well with the majority of the guys out there and if he doesn’t, he does whatever he can to throw himself in there and finish the play.”
Williams did himself a favor enrolling early, getting 15 practices of experience before going into offseason conditioning – a time period we expected to see a lot of growth.
Williams not only has worked at safety, but in the spring also at the NICKEL spot, showing his versatility. He’s the type of defensive back that breaks on the ball hard and finds someone to hit – hard.
Less than a year ago, Williams was high school, being highlighted by Scout.com in our Scout Spotlight: