A big visitor will be in Lincoln

Nebraska has a tradition of dipping into Missouri to pull defensive ends. There has been Grant Wistrom and Mike Rucker who have both gone on to be All-Pro defensive ends in the NFL. This coming weekend, one of the best defensive ends in the nation will be in Lincoln who hails from Missouri.

Michael Keck has had a busy week. Before the week started the defensive end from Harrisonville (Mo.) was holding onto five offers. Before the week got over the total was eight. Keck admitted that it was a bit busy, but for as good of a player as he is he should expect more of them.

"Yeah it was a little busy this week," Keck said. "Nebraska, Wisconsin and Northwestern all offered me this week. That makes eight offers. I had offers from Missouri, Kansas, Kansas State, Colorado State and Stanford before this week."

So has Keck been doing anything special to be picking up these offers right now? "Not really. I mean, I have been to Missouri and Kansas State a couple of times. I have been to Kansas once. That is about it. My coach sent a lot of film. It has been awesome."

Keck helped lead Harrisonville to a 3A state championship. He had a huge season from his defensive end position. "We won state. We are in Class 3. Class 6 is the largest in the state. I had 148 tackles, 12 sacks, three forced and three recovered fumbles. I don't know how many tackles I had for loss, but it was quite a few."

Keck won just about every possible honor that you could last year. "I was all-state, all-conference and all district. I was also all-area, all-county and all-metro. I was also voted the MVP of our team. I was nominated for the Bobby Bell award too. That is the area's top defensive lineman award."

So what does Keck attribute his success on the field to? "I am fast. I run a 4.4 or a 4.5 40-yard dash. I ran a 4.3 handheld which is about a 4.6 electronic. I just say 4.5. I am quick and I get off the ball fast. I read the ball pretty well too. I like to go for the ball so it doesn't matter if I am rushing the passer or defending the run."

The weekend dates for Keck are starting to fill up with plans to see other colleges and take in a camp or two. One of those camp plans right now is in jeopardy following a hamstring injury that may not be healed up in time for the combine.

"I am going to go to the spring game at Nebraska on April 15. On the 22nd I was going to the Scout.com combine in Iowa City. I actually just pulled my hamstring and if I can't participate I am not going to go. If I can't go to the combine I am going to go to Kansas State for their spring game."

Beyond the travel plans Keck is planning on getting back into the gym and working on his game. "Really just to get bigger and stronger. I will be working on footwork and stuff because my footwork is O.K., but it's not as good as it can be. Basically I just want to get better all the way around."

Though it is very early in the process Keck has thought about his leaders to some degree. "Out of the first five offers I would say it is Missouri, Kansas State and Kansas. Those were the first ones to offer. Now that Nebraska has offered I am going to take a look at them and Wisconsin as well."

Keck's knowledge of Nebraska is pretty limited and he plans on learning a lot about them during his trip to Lincoln this coming weekend. He is familiar with Nebraska's traditions though, especially the one involving the first string defense.

"I don't know a lot about them, but I know that they brought in the coach from the Raiders, Bill Callahan. I am going to get to meet him. I like the philosophy of the Blackshirts. That is pretty cool. Other than that I don't know a lot about them. I know that they have a good tradition and they do a lot of good stuff with their strength and conditioning program."


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