Matt Herian, Pierce High School, Pierce, Neb.
6 foot 5, 220 pounds
At 6 feet 5 and 220 pounds, former Lincoln Journal-Star Super Stater Matt Herian certainly doesn't look up to many people on or off the field. Unless that person is a 6 foot, 195 pound running back.
"David Horne," Herian quickly responded when asked which fellow 2002 Nebraska recruit impressed him the most. "He's a big time player."
Among the verbally committed players who will officially become Huskers on Thursday, there are projected superstars like Horne and linebacker Demorrio Williams who will probably see the field before they see their first midterm at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
But for every player too tantalizingly talented to ride the bench, there are players that require the proper aging — not to mention maturity — which a redshirt season brings. Despite a 275-pound bench press and a 38-inch vertical, the only tight end to verbally commit in this year's class said a year on the scout team would only sharpen his skills and allow him to develop into an impact player for 2003.
"They (Nebraska coaches) kind of told me that after my redshirt season, I might be in for some playing time," Herian said.
As a two-way player at C-1 Pierce High School, Herian grabbed the attention of northeast Nebraska prep coaches for his size and tremendous mobility. In his senior season, that combination distinguished Herian on a team good enough to reach the state football final, a 9-7 loss to Boone Central (a game in which an injured Herian was unable to play).
With such a large frame and a 40-yard time slightly slower than most running backs, Herian drew considerable interest Division I interest before selecting the Huskers over Iowa State and Purdue. With the departure of Tracey Wistrom this season and Jon Bowling and Aaron Golliday in 2002, Herian likes his chances to compete with other Husker tight ends including scholarship players Phil Peetz and Chris Septak.
"I'm starting to get excited," Herian said of his future in Lincoln. "I'm getting ready to go."