Huskers trying for another super JUCO DB

When it comes to JUCO DBs, Nebraska has been pretty successful. With Zack Bowman last year and Andre Jones this year, they have gotten two of the highest rated JUCO DBs in the country during their last year in junior college ball. Well, they have a shot at another, and like that dynamic duo, this one could be the cream of the crop. Can the Huskers score three top DBs in a row?

You can ask College of the Sequoias defensive back Woodny Turenne how many offers he has, but he's probably not going to know. It isn't just the fact that the coaches handle most of that for him either. It has as much to do with the fact that before Turenne knew how many he had, he had more than he could have ever imagined.

"I know it's a lot, but I don't know how many there are," Woodny said of the written offers. "The coaches handle that, but I know there's some big timers in there."


Try USC for one, Florida for another, and throw in approximately 30 other offers, you might be getting close to the current total of written scholarships he has. It's so much, Turenne doesn't really even think about it in terms of who has offered him, but just what he's looking for in a team.

"When I was in high school, I was caught up in who was who," he said. "I grew up in Florida, so I was a fan of all the Florida teams, plus teams like USC, Tennessee and Michigan. Now, though, I am just thinking about what's going to suit me the best, where I will fit in, and where I have a shot to play right away."

Zack Bowman was one of the highest
rated junior college players in the
country two years ago.
That last comment would probably be considered almost absurd to most, especially to all those schools who have offered him thus far. First, you don't recruit junior college players to sit on the bench and second, this isn't your average junior college recruit.

As a freshman for College of the Sequoias Turenne had five interceptions for his team. That in and of itself probably doesn't blow you away. Him being over 6 foot tall might, though. In this day-and-age of bigger and more complete receivers, size seems to matter more and more, but that size must come with flexibility and, of course, speed.

How does a 4.28/40 grab you?

You put all that together, look at his potential and you can lift your jaw off the floor anytime. This kid is physically, at least, a freak.

It's ironic then and refreshing, that when you ask Turenne to analyze himself, especially as one of the most coveted DBs in the country at any of the amateur levels, he keeps everything in perspective. "I don't get caught up in the hype, because that doesn't make you a better player," he said. "All I do is work as hard as I can and when it's game-time, I give it everything I've got."

"I'm a pretty laid back guy, so I don't talk a lot. I like to let my play do that for me."

It's obviously done that to the point you can name the who's who of collegiate football, and he's probably got an offer somewhere in a pile in the coaches' office.

That's another thing, which has allowed him to take a step back and look at everything, because he knows he doesn't have to prove anything to anyone but himself. With many junior college recruits, they are still trying to make a name for themselves, still trying for an offer, and they will do anything to get a look. Turenne already has that, so he concentrates on what got him to that status in the first place.

"I believe in my speed, my instincts and my ability," Woodny said. "I go out there and trust in what I know I can do and just play my game. It's not like I think I can't be beat, but I work very hard in making sure that if you do, it won't come easily."

Turrene won't admit to a specific style of play out there on the field as some might, saying that they are either physical and aggressive or nimble, quick and smart. Turenne looks at the competition as what it is, but he figures that he's got what it takes to play them all.

The only thing he really tries to concentrate on when he does hit the field each time, is that, whoever he's facing, they know what's in store for them that particular game. "I want to make them feel me. I want them to know right off the bat, wherever they go, I'm going to be right there," he said. "You are going to face all kinds of receivers, but I approach them all the same. There isn't any place they can do or anything they can do, that I can't match."

Turenne's confidence comes from experience dating all the way back to high school in Florida. As early as his junior year he was already getting a lot of hype at his position. What brought reality to the forefront was when he couldn't take advantage of that opportunity right away, his path ultimately leading to junior college. And it's that perspective which has made him not just the player, but the person he is today.

"In high school I probably thought more about the game than I did the academic side of things, but when you have to go to junior college, you learn real fast how much academics mean," he said. "That's why when I choose a college, it's going to have to be a place where I can get a good degree, because no matter what happens in football, I am going to be prepared for life and able to take care of my family."

Football does come into the equation, of course, but probably not in the way you would think. Yes, he's looking at an opportunity to play early, but this east coast kid, who is playing on the west coast, isn't thinking about the usual things most of the kids on the coasts think about.
Like Bowman, Andre Jones was one of
the highest rated DBs in JUCO-ball last

"I don't care where I go to college, so location, weather, none of that really means anything to me," he said. "I'm not looking for anything specific other than what kind of academics they have and the opportunity to play."

"It's how the place fits me, which means more to me than anything. If it fits me, I'll go anywhere."

With that being said, familiarity with your surroundings makes some of his choices as to where he'd like to take official visits understandable. "I know I am visiting Florida on the 30th of September and I will probably visit USC," Woodny said. "I know Nebraska is trying to set something up and if they do, I might make it out there too."

Nebraska has had some serious success over the last couple of years when it comes to grabbing top notch junior college DBs. Both Zack Bowman and Andre Jones were considered to be one of if not the best at their position at that particular time. Turenne falls into that category as well, but he's even got a connection with Nebraska, which neither of those had. He has relation, who played for the big red.

"My cousin is Donald DeFrand and he's actually here in California with me right now," Turenne said of the former Husker DB, who is now enrolled at the University of Nebraska in Omaha. "He doesn't say too much about Nebraska, though. He just says that I need to go where I feel like it's the best fit for me."

That relation, though, does give Turenne one particular insight into the Huskers, that if someone didn't tell him, he might not otherwise know. "I know about guys in the secondary that have gotten drafted from there like the Bullocks brothers and Fabian Washington," he said. "That's something you definitely look at, because that next step is something you think about."

The next step for Woodny is figuring out these visits, because he's going to be able to sign an L.O.I in November, graduate in December and be on a campus by January. That means he's going to have to narrow his list down to probably five or so teams, before football gears up. To that end Turenne said that it's just a matter of sitting down with his coaches, evaluating his options and seeing just which school fits what he needs.

Four months ago that might have been easy. Now, though? Even Turenne knows that this ever-growing pile of offers isn't going to be an easy one to chip down to a manageable size. "There's a lot to look at and a lot to talk about with my coaches," Turenne said. "I don't even ask about who all the schools are, but I know I'll have go over each of them at some point."

"It's great getting all the attention, because it just means that I have more choices. But that doesn't mean it's always easy. You still have to figure them all out."

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