First, he saw the Athletic Director get fired, which prompted a deluge of speculation as to the fate of the rest of the coaches on the team. That speculation led many commits like Givens to start thinking about other places, should the worst happen.
Well, Bill Callahan was fired following the Colorado game. And today Bryce got a phone call from one of the coaches recruiting him, who was also going to be his position coach at Nebraska . "Coach Wagner called me today and said that he wasn't going to be at Nebraska anymore," Givens said of former offensive line coach Dennis Wagner. "I really liked him and his style, and I really liked Coach Callahan and his style, too. I got along really well with them, so this creates a whole lot of things to think about."
The relationships are obviously what Bryce points to when he considers some of the primary reasons he chose Nebraska from the outset. Sure, the tradition is nice, the fans are great and the facilities are second to none. But not even Coach Wagner, who told Givens to still think of Nebraska, because of all the other things he said was great about the place, could convince him that everything was going to be fine.
"I haven't met their new offensive line coach and I only talked to Coach Osborne just one time. We have been playing phone tag a bit trying to get in touch with each other," Bryce said. "I really want to meet Coach Pelini and get to know everyone else there who I might be dealing a lot with in the future."
The good part is that wide receivers coach Ted Gilmore is still there, Gilmore being Givens' primary recruiter. It's the one foundation Bryce said he could build upon, because Gilmore is the one person who he still knows. "Having him there is important, because he recruited me first and I have gotten to know him pretty well," Givens said. "But I have to get to know these other guys and it's almost like starting over, because except for Coach Gilmore, for me, this is an entirely new team."
If this were Spring 2007, there might not be that big of an issue as Givens would have the time to get to know the ins and outs of the staff members of the big red. But it's December, "Signing Day" just over a couple of months away.
Givens looks at the thought of trying to build whole new relationships in two months, where with some other recruiters, including those who just departed from Nebraska, he had up to two years, as daunting but not impossible.
"It is possible to build something in that time. I mean, there's a lot you can find out in just a couple of weeks," he said. "But the first step is meeting them and now that they are all probably going out the road, I hope I get a chance to do that very soon."
If the big red hope to keep Givens in the fold, the visit from the Nebraska coaches probably can't some soon enough. Givens has official visits set up for Texas this weekend and Colorado the weekend after that.
Givens said that while he didn't expect to make a decision right away after those visits, opting instead to probably announce his final intentions at the U.S. Army All-American Game, once the visits are done, he should have a pretty good idea.
"I'd think by then I would know a lot as to which school might fit me the best or what I think will be the best situation for me. But something like this isn't going to be easy," he said. "I know it's going to be tough no matter what. I have a lot of catch up to do with Nebraska and I obviously have some other schools I am looking at, too.
"What's happened at Nebraska has been a little disappointing, but I'll just see how it goes. If it's not meant to be, it's not meant to be, but I'll make sure to give it a chance so I am sure about what I finally want to do."
Given's team went into the playoffs undefeated, but lost in the semifinals to Douglas County , the Mustangs finishing the year 12-1.