NU Summer Camp - Session 2, Day 2

You don't expect a lot to change from one day to the next of a summer camp, but that's just what happened today for the first session of the two regular summer camps at the University of Nebraska. Tyler Bullock and Derrick Russell made their appearance today to show what they could do and to see if they had the right stuff to walk out of this session with offers from the big red.

Tyler Bullock and Derrick Russell made their appearance today to show what they could do and to see if they had the right stuff to walk out of this session with offers from the big red.

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Tyler Bullock


After the showing Derrick Russell made as a wide receiver at the Nike combine in Manhattan, Kansas, his own expectations for what he could do at Nebraska were high indeed. So to were that of his teammate and friend, Tyler Bullock, both trying to secure offers from the Huskers.


Both already have offers from Kansas State and Russell talked about how ideally, they would like to play together at the next level. So, did they hurt or help their stock in the testing and individual drill-phase today?


Tyler Bullock took the testing honors between the two, Bullock jumping 34 inches to Russell's 29 and running a best of 4.50 in the 40 to Russell's 4.62. Only Jake Sharp, an extremely athletic running back out of Kansas had a better time than Bullock, running a 4.42 earlier that day.


In individual testing, both ran a variety of routes, wide receiver coach Ted Gilmore showing off the impressive arm he has, throwing them balls short, middle and deep. Both athletes also worked out in footwork drills.


Comparing them side-by-side, Bullock seemed the quicker of the two in his change of direction with slightly better footwork while Russell seemed more natural for the wide receiver position, using his hands pretty well throughout.


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Derrick Russell

The X-factor here is size and that's where Russell has a distinct advantage over Bullock, Derrick standing just over 6 foot, 3 inches tall, while Bullock is right around 6 foot.


On paper, that's only three and a half inches, but when you are a school looking at them as a wideout, it's a monumental disparity.

Is it enough for an offer, though?


Russell has the height, but obviously needs the weight, Derrick weighing in at around only 184 pounds right now. His frame can support more weight, thought not a lot more and there's always the concern as to how much the added weight will affect his speed and quickness.


As for Bullock, he was physically more impressive, weighing just 4 pounds less than Russell, even with the disparity in height. As a wide receiver, Bullock wouldn't get an offer from Nebraska, but as a safety, I could see Tyler filling a role quite nicely. Perhaps not in Lincoln, but I think he projects much better at that position than he does on the offensive side of the ball.


Russell is close, real close and his size makes him an obvious target for NU. Does it warrant an offer right now? I don't think so as Nebraska still finds itself with shots at wideouts like David Ausberry, Chris Bell and Anthony Houston and the number they plan on taking will dictate whether or not Derrick gets the ship to the land of the big red.


In the end, I think the situation as far as how recruiting goes with the standouts outside of the borders will figure into Russell getting an offer more than Russell himself. He's a solid athlete with a good up-

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Jake Sharp

side, so he's an option, just not THE option right now.


There's one standout that doesn't figure to get an offer from Nebraska , but it's not for a lack of being possibly the best overall athlete at the camp in session one. Jake Sharp , a running back out of Salina Central in Salina, Kansas ran the fastest forty-time (4.42) of the camp, posted one of if not the best time in the shuttle (4.1) and jumped an impressive 30 inches.


The problem here is the 5 foot, 9 inches he stands, something that will be the biggest knock on what he can do down the road.


You don't have to question his feet as Sharp has incredible feet, combined with a Cortney Grixby-like explosion, plus he's got exceptional balance and is very fluid in the hips. You give him three inches and he has offers from everyone under the sun. Without that, though, he's still a great athlete, but at least here in Lincoln would serve a larger role as a specialist, something they already have Robert Rands tabbed for in the future.


He's a player, though, no doubt and legit as a solid athlete.


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Seth Jensen

Seth Jensen was known as a solid athlete coming in, but with camps, these are the opportunities to compare what you see on film to what they have to show up close.

Unlike last year with a couple of touted players that didn't show well, Seth Jensen showed that he's every bit as good as the hype.


At right around 6 foot, 4 inches tall and weighing about 270 pounds, Jensen has a great first step, is extremely quick out of his stance and as another Nebraska recruit (Cody Habben) found out, he's in your face faster than you might think.


Jensen has the hands as well, using a very effective swim move, but basically just knowing how to use his strength and leverage against the guy he's facing, Jensen able to take Habben off the snap, getting by him repeatedly and as it seemed, with not a great deal of effort.


Jensen also has the motor as he'll be gasping and wheezing after a set of drills, because he's got one speed when he's out there and it doesn't stop until the whistle is blown. Jensen is being recruited for a variety of positions, including offensive guard, tackle, center, defensive end and defensive lineman on the interior.


I think that if you don't recruit him as a DE, you are making a mistake. Physically, Jensen is still a long ways from being as physically stout as he is capable and that is with just 16 percent on body fat right now. He's already impressive, but his upside is even more-so. I liked Seth before he came to the camp, but now after having seen him, this one is a keeper for anyone that can get him.


It looks to be down to just Oklahoma and Nebraska , Jensen already having been to OU's camp, Seth expecting to make a decision on where he goes either early or by mid-July. I'd say that Nebraska is looking really good for him at this point. Proximity is better than Oklahoma's to his home in Colorado, plus it's a northern division team, meaning that it's going to be at least a little easier for his family to catch as many games as possible.


Another making his appearance today was Justin Makovicka , a name we have come to know and appreciate at NU. The thing is, at least going into his senior year, Justin is physically the most impressive in

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Justin Makovicka

comparison to his brothers at the same point.


From last year to this year, Makovicka has added about ten pounds, looks a lot sturdier and has even bettered his balance and feetwork overall. In the individual drills, Justin really showed that he's going to be a solid contributor, plus he has that Makovicka heart, which is as reputable as it gets here in Lincoln.


He wants to walk-on at Nebraska and after seeing him today, I don't think there is anyway Nebraska turns him down. As far as I am concerned, at least as long as he doesn't get offers from other players, he's a lock to be yet another Makovicka with the big red.


Once again, Howells' Scott Bayer proved to be the diamond in the rough at the camp, exhibiting everything in the second day he did in the first and more. If Nebraska can get Bayer to commit to NU as a preferred walk-on, I think that would be one of the steals within the state. There's just not much of a downside to him and coming from eight-man football, there's a whole lot he still has to learn.


I'll give guys like Jordan McMichael, Seth Jensen and others credit for being phenomenal athletes that many already knew about, but in the category of "best in-state player you've never heard of", this guy takes the award in a landslide.


If you want to look at guys rising or falling in just a day, I think that Cody Habben perhaps fell somewhat, Seth Jensen besting him quite easily in individual drills. Habben, while athletic to an extent wasn't extremely quick off the ball and has a long ways to go with his technique. Habben could be a guy that will develop into a solid player, but that will take some time and as to the Nebraska offer that he was hoping to get, I don't think that he hit the mark he needed to hit.


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John Fisher

Lincoln Northeast's John Fisher helped his stock today, but it probably won't do much good in respect to impressing the big red. They might ask him to walk on, but I would say that Fisher is looking to see if there is an offer out there for him.


He's got very good athleticism, has pretty good explosiveness and closes on the ball pretty well. I like what he does side-to-side and his hips are fairly flexible. Like Sharp, though, his size (Around 5 foot, 10 inches tall) will hurt him to the point that he may still be looked at as a DB or safety, but he'll have to prove worthy of the offers during the season, because I think it's just too soon to tell if he's capable of playing those positions adeptly at the next level.


That's what these camps are about, other than the coaches being able to teach the players some valuable techniques that they can utilize to make their overall game better. Many want to go to these camps and see how they stack up to some of the best.


To that end, some did that and we have even seen a surprise or two and that's also what it's about: Finding that diamond in the rough.


Nebraska will finish up session 1 tomorrow with the 7 on 7 finals and the fastest man competition. Wednesday will be an off-day and session 2 will commence, where players like Butch Lewis are slated to be in attendance. Butch Lewis is already climbing the charts as one of the best lineman prospects in the Midwest, sporting offers from the likes of Georgia , Nebraska and USC.


For more on the camp, check out this report from fellow staffer Justin Stoller as he gives you his lowdown, plus is expanded take on the Salina star Jake Sharp:


As Steve has already mentioned, the moment of the day came when both Tyler Bullock and Derrick Russell arrived at camp.  I think every coach made their way over in between drills to say hi, including

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Sharp in action

Coach Callahan.  I gave my break down of both in the afternoon version.  I still think it will be very interesting to see if either gets an offer.  They are good friends and if both don't get an offer, don't be surprised to see them head to Kansas State where offers are present.


My stud of the camp and the day is a little known guy named Jake Sharp.  He wasn't even in the database until Steve finishes that.  Jake is a running back from Salina Kansas and plays in what would probably be Class A here in Lincoln.  He ran for 2330 yards and had 33 touchdowns.  To go along with those already amazing stats, Jake had another 200 yards on punt returns and two touchdowns. 


He tested out the best of probably any kid at the first camp.  Running a 4.42 40 to go along with a 4.1 shuttle.  You can only imagine how fast this kid is, but watching him live makes him seem even that much faster.  He has incredible burst and Coach Jordan seemed to really love him. 


He got worked out individually by the coaching staff and it's somewhat up in the air what will happen with Jake.  He appears a little too small for Nebraska.  I asked Jake what would happen if Nebraska would ask him to walk on.  "I wouldn't think about it probably, I have an offer from Kansas and I don't have a lot of money."  That's a reasonable response and probably what will end up happening for Jake. 


He is 5'9 180lbs but has an incredibly ripped body for that short stature.  He can bench press 185lbs 21 times which speaks volume about his upper body strength and stamina.  To go along with the Kansas offer, he mentions Tulsa, Colorado State, and Wyoming as being very interested and close to offering. 


Now if the day did come for Jake to receive that Nebraska offer, it would help them a lot.  "Oh definitely, they would jump into my top 3, I really love the tradition down here."  Jake admits he is still very open though and just trying to receive more options.  He will make a commitment whenever he feels comfortable.  Whoever gets that commitment might get a sleeper prospect at running back or safety. 


Side Note:  When you have an in-state kid and your rival in-state school has offered the kid, normally you would want to at least look at him, especially when it's Jake Sharp.  Not the case though for Kansas State.  "They haven't even called me." Sharp said in a little different tone.


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