In 2008, Nelson made a position move to outside linebacker and picked up where he left off a year prior wreaking havoc in the Dallas area with a combination of quickness, closing speed, change of direction, kick blocking ability and big play making ability in spades.
"I had a pretty decent season," Nelson said with humbleness. "Since I was in my first year playing linebacker, I would say I had a pretty good season. There is a lot more work to be done though. As a team, it's hard when you lose because you're cherishing continuing to play in the playoffs. It's tough because we worked so hard as a team in the summer lifting weights and running wind sprints every day. It was really tough to lose," Nelson added.
While the humble star said he had a decent season, the numbers he put in the books fell to the side of eye popping and jaw dropping. In 14 games, in which Skyline went 12-2 for a second straight season, Nelson tallied 156 tackles, 19 tackles for loss, 12 sacks, nine blocked punts, five caused fumbles and three fumble recoveries.
For his efforts, the 6-0, 210-pound speedster was recently selected to the Associated Press first team 5A all-state squad. It's an honor that Nelson is proud of and sees as a reward for all of the hard work.
"It's pretty good to be selected. I look at it, as hard work being rewarded and it feel good to have that title. It's now a part of history for Skyline," Nelson said.
With the run of overwhelming success on the field, the scholarship offers have poured in from coast to coast.
"I have offers from Texas Tech, Texas A&M, LSU, Stanford, Kansas, Nebraska, OU has verbally offered, Oklahoma State has offered verbally, Texas has offered, UCLA and Miami. I don't really have a list of school right now. I'm keeping my options open," Nelson said, who has offers from Florida and Oregon in addition to those listed.
Despite the long 14 game season and a few Saturdays focused on the high school season, the talented junior had the time to take in a few games in the state.
"I went to A&M when they played Colorado and to Texas' game against Arkansas. I also went to the Texas-OU game. All of them were about equal. The atmospheres were great. The intensity of the players was great too," Nelson said.
Along with the offers and game visits, Nelson has been invited to a number of junior days both regionally and nationally. If the schedule fits, Nelson plans to attend several.
"I've been invited to a lot. I've been invited to ones at A&M, Oregon, Nebraska, Stanford, Texas, Texas Tech and OU. Those are a few of them. I'm planning to go to A&M (January 31), OU, Stanford, Texas Tech and maybe Texas. A&M is the only one I have a date for," Nelson said.
With a multitude of offers, scheme options and geographical destinations that most recruits aren't presented with, cutting a list to workable number can be the hard part along with telling programs no. Nelson says he plans to cut his list by the end of the school year and hopefully make a decision before his senior season.
"I plan to make a decision during the summer. I'm hoping to narrow my list down in the late spring or early summer. I'm looking for academics first. I have to look at which schools will have the major I choose. I'm also going to look at the work ethic of the programs and unity of the teams. Also a positive atmosphere and the whole campus," Nelson said.