Sitting up at night with a baby son that had a temperature of 101, you had to think that for a moment, Hazelwood east wideout, Chris Brooks thought about the distance from his home to both Missouri and Nebraska.
He did, but despite the obvious advantages in being closer to home, Chris said that it was that and more that went into his final decision. "It was really the relationship I have established with coach Cosgrove and Callahan," Brooks said of the defensive coordinator and head coach. "I just felt very comfortable with them and that along with my visit was what really convinced me that, that was the place to go."
It wasn't a decision that Brooks came by hastily as you are aware. After some soul searching following his commitment to Missouri earlier in the year, Brooks looked around to see if he had really explored all of his options. When he did that, Nebraska and the recruitment of Cosgrove had it's effect.
That effect was never more profound than this morning when he awoke. "It was funny, because I just woke up and I knew where I wanted to go," Chris said. "Even last night I was thinking about Nebraska, but Missouri was there to, but this morning, it was just clear to me that Nebraska was where I needed to be."
Brooks will join in this class as one of a few wide receivers, Wallace Franklin and Zack Bowman figuring to play or vie for playing time their first year along with Brooks. Chris isn't one to speculate about the impact he could have or how early he could play for a still depleted receiving core. He chose to look at his first year as an opportunity, not a given.
"I'm staying humble about all of this," he said. "I am going to go in there and try to play right away, but you have to recognize that they have a great class now and some great players already there. I just want to get in there, get to know the players and just prove what I can do by how hard I work. I won't worry about the rest."
Ranked as one of the top 25 receivers in the country, Brooks was Hazelwood east's hot target, Chris tallying an incredible 1,200 plus yards on the year. As gaudy as those stats are, though, Chris said that when his season ended, he effectively went back to zero. "What you do in high school gets you noticed, but it doesn't get you a starting spot at the next level," he said. "You have to work for everything and just go in thinking that you have everyone in front of you to beat before you are going to see the field."
"That's how I look at it, because I think you have to, because it helps keep you motivated every day."
Brooks' decision obviously came after careful consultation with his family and of course, his future fiance'. And, it is Brooks' hope that while she won't be up to join him in Lincoln immediately, that she will sometime in the near future. "We have been talking about that since I really started thinking about Nebraska," he said. "I hope that she can come up maybe in the second semester or something like that."
"If that happens, everything will be great.
Brooks becomes the 26th commitment for the University of Nebraska, Chris joined today by number 27, defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh.
Brooks chose Nebraska over Missouri