The name Irving Fryar invokes a lot of memories in Cornhusker fans. You don't even have to be that old to have seen the former Cornhusker dancing up and down sidelines be it in college or the NFL after recently retiring and leaving behind a career that most feel will earn him a spot in the Hall of Fame. That's not what this is about, though. This is about the legacies. It's about the Wistroms, the Ruuds, the Peters and now, the Fryars.
Irving Fryar Jr., a 6' 3" 185 pound wide receiver prospect out of Columbus, New Jersey has garnered a bit of interest in the recruiting world, but you can guess where his name is going to be bandied about the most. Fryar reports a 4.5 40 yard dash to go along with a 225 pound bench press and a 3.2 GPA. During a season after which he was named First-Team All-County, he had 14 catches for 315 yards and four touchdowns to his name.
He currently has no offers but is being pursued the hardest by Nebraska and Wisconsin with the former being his current favorite. He cites his strengths as his ability to get up and down the field quickly, his soft hands and his ability to get physical with the man covering him.
When you've got a father who has done the things that Jr.'s dad has, the pressure to perform is only enhanced once you pick up the sport he dominated not to mention when you're at the same position. "It's different, but people don't bug me about it as much as they used to. They used to think I was stuck up. I honestly didn't even like football until about three years ago," he said.
Fryar said that basketball was more his game, but he soon found himself leaving the round ball sitting in the driveway. "It was my sophomore year and I thought maybe I should play football and stuff just started going good with it and left basketball out to dry," he said. Given the opportunity, Irving said he'd really enjoy playing both sports at his eventual college. "I would love to play basketball and football. In high school I play center but when I play AAU I play shooting guard and small forward," he said. So given the two options, what do people say he excels at most? "Most people say I'm better at football, but that's where the passion is," he said.
There are some benefits to having a Hall of Fame dad who knows your position in and out, at least in terms of training. The benefits, according to Fryar Jr., don't come easy, however. "We do drills, route running, conditioning, weight training. He takes me on these 30 minute runs. We go out for and his pace is ridiculous like he's running the 100. He keeps that pace and we have to be on time on the way back we're going up and down hills. He's got me doing weight training, not necessarily as much weight but with endurance and repetitions. It's hard," said Fryar.
Junior's relationship with Nebraska has been pretty solid and while communication has been lax at times, he truly expects things to pick up once the coaches are able to call. "I'd say we have a pretty good relationship. I talked to Coach (Kevin) Cosgrove here and there. It's good. It can be (better) and it will be," he said.
With his father being such a dynamic and vital part of the tradition that Nebraska offers, one has to wonder if the pull to be a Cornhusker is pretty strong on Irving. "I feel that I'm doing my own thing. (Dad) obviously has influence in it but it's really my decision," he said. Fryar has no official visits lined up yet but said he'd like to visit Wisconsin, Nebraska, Louisville, Minnesota and USC.
When it comes down to when he feels comfortable actually pulling the trigger, Fryar just wants to play ball. "I feel if the right school makes the right offer then, if I can get into school anywhere, I'll take it. Nebraska's where I want to go but if Nebraska doesn't offer me and someone else does, I'll go there," he said. In looking at some of the larger factors that will play into Irving's recruitment, he said, "I want to major in marketing because that's going to be a big part of my life. I definitely want to look at a school that has that major," he said. Fryar wants to start his own chain of high-scale restaurants after football. In terms of athletics, Fryar commented that he's looking for, "A good team. I'm looking at a team that has hard workers and chemistry. I don't really look at the past. Nebraska just put in the West Coast Offense and I'm looking at it as in a couple of years, there's going to be great," he said.