He’s talking about family here, but Devin White is a confident dude who isn’t about to sell his own talents short.
“I probably could have covered him,” White said in playful tone. “Because, I got some quickness. I like to believe I can run with everybody. I could run with wide receivers down the field. So I probably could.”
The 2016 linebacker/running back recruit from Springhill, La., is talking about Vershan Jackson. You might know him as a former Husker tight end who came out of Omaha South and was on all three national championship teams in the mid-1990s. He was even one of the team captains in 1997.
White knows Jackson as his cousin.
“He’s been saying, ‘I gotta get you up there, I gotta get you up there,’” White said. “It’s happened now. I’ll be up there.”
White, who has a Husker scholarship offer in hand, is planning to be in Lincoln this weekend for Nebraska’s Big Red Weekend recruiting event, the first of two showcases in back-to-back weeks.
While next weekend’s event appears to be drawing a bigger crowd — with names such as safeties Hunter Dale and Will Sunderland, and wide receiver DeMarkus Lodge and linebacker Richard Moore possibly attending — the first weekend includes a couple of visitors with interesting Husker connections.
White has his cousin. Defensive end Christian Rector has his coach. A 2015 recruit, Rector comes from Los Angeles Loyola High School, where the new head coach is Marvin Sanders, former Husker defensive back and assistant coach.
Yes, of course, Sanders has told Rector a thing or two about Nebraska football.
“He talks very highly about them,” said Rector, a 6-foot-4, 240-pound prospect who is being heavily recruited on the West Coast, including offers from USC and UCLA.
But the fact Nebraska is outside that box of Pac-12 schools provides part of the intrigue for Rector.
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“I just want to see what they’re all about,” he said. “It’s a completely different conference than I’m used to that’s offered me. It’s a whole different feel. So it will be good to go out there and see it for myself.”
Rector is still in the early stages of his recruiting decision, he believes. As with White, Husker assistant Ron Brown has been the primary contact for the defensive end, who doesn’t know that he’ll commit to any school until December or January.
Also expected to visit this weekend are two recruits already on board as Husker commitments — cornerback Avery Anderson, a Rivals 250 recruit from Colorado Springs, Colo., and Daishon Neal, Omaha Central defensive end.
This Big Red Weekend will also feature an appearance by Nebraska’s newest transfer. Wide receiver Demore’ea Stringfellow, who will report to campus in mid-July, is coming to town. Stringfellow has had some Twitter exchanges with future teammates, such as Ameer Abdullah and Kenny Bell.
Nebraska already has sold Stringfellow.
As for someone like White, the 6-foot, 230-pound recruit still has plenty of time to weigh his options, with reported offers already from LSU, Alabama and Mississippi, among others. Remember, he'll just be a junior this fall.
Still, White said he wouldn’t mind making a decision earlier than most.
“I kind of do want to get it out of the way. That’s why I’m visiting a lot of schools,” he said. “But even if I do make this decision, I’m still going to be open and I’m going to take all five of my visits. I’m going to keep going to junior days just like I’ve been doing, because you only get one time to do it. So I want to be for sure.”
He knows NU has been making a strong push recruiting the state of Louisiana, taking three players from the same high school in New Orleans in last year’s recruiting class alone. Then there’s the current Husker commitment list, which features running back and top-100 recruit Kendall Bussey of New Orleans. And White is familiar with Husker coach Bo Pelini’s background as a defensive coordinator at LSU.
“I know he has a good eye for good talent,” White said.
As for whether he prefers to play running back or linebacker at the next level, White says he’ll do whatever is asked. He’s confident he can do either.
“Most schools tell me they’re not recruiting me at one position, they’re recruiting me at both, because I excel at both.”