Huskers latest commitment follows heart

People always talk about athleticism and how it combines with size and makes them a great football player. Well, I am not sure that scenario was ever as big as it is here. Imagine a linebacker that runs a 4.5, is record setter at the discus and is a decathelete to boot?

That imgination is reality and it is Steve Octavien. Simply put, he is an athlete to the nth degree. This week he chose Nebraska aver Iowa and North Carolina. To help him was an analysis sheet that outlined what he was looking at.

"On my analysis sheet there were five questions. It looked at coaching staff, recruiting, location, travel, weather, and academic details. I scored each question on a scale from one to five," Octavien said.

The problem here is that the winner wasn't the winner. It's not a riddle, but the school that actually had the most points did not receive Steve's letter of intent on Wednesday. "In all atuality, North Carolina actually won. They beat Nebraska who was tied with Iowa and they both beat Central Florida. It was a seven point win to North Carolina. Central Florida was beat by 18 by Nebraska and Iowa."

So why? Why buck the system and do it on a whim? The system was very detailed and was something that his coach gave to him to guide him through the process. The same coaches that dedicated the past two years to making the Steve the player is today.

"I had to follow my heart. As much as I would have liked to go to any of those other schools my heart was telling me to go to Nebraska. They have a great coaching staff and my opportunity to play, all of the opportunities were good, but at Nebraska it's my job. Not many kids can transfer in and be a starter. It's where I wanted to be. I grew up loving The Huskers."

Nebraska also had an ace up their sleeve. While Steve was in Illinois his parents were in Florida. A special visit was paid to his parents by the defensive coordinator of Nebraska. "My parents also really liked Coach Cosgrove. That really factored into the equation."

Nebraska knows what kind of a athlete and player that they got. Out of high school, there was a question as to what Steve might have actually been recruited more for. Was it football or was it track? Either way, the athleticism and strength that was needed to help in football made the crossover into the other sport and made him a standout in both.

"Out of high school I was also recruited for track. I was tenth in the nation in the discus. I won state my junior year. Then I went to Harper. I ran the second leg of the 4x100. We won nationals in that. I also won the nationals in discus and broke the national record for division III junior college. I got third in the shot put, fifth in the long jump and got eighth in the deathalon which was only my second time doing that all year."

Octavien won't let his talents in the discus go to waste. The question is now, is that the only event he will participate in? "I want to do track in college too. That also played a major factor in what school I chose. Central Florida doesn't have a mens track team. That was a big flaw that they had. Iowa, North Carolina and Nebraska all had great track coaches. Either one of those were good things. I think that all I want to do is the discus in college at Nebraska."

"I just want to get up there and get to thinking about football again."

I believe that the Husker fans do too, Steve.

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