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Alex Conn

Kansas offensive lineman Alex Conn, who has committed to the Huskers, cleared the way for a big offensive day for his Derby high school team last week.

Meet the players who plan to don Husker red in the coming years.

High school profile

My school: Derby (Kansas) High School.

City profile: Derby has a population of about 24,000 and is about four hours from Lincoln.

Players from the school to play NCAA Division I football in the past 14 years: 6.

Number of players out for football: 152 in high school.

This week: Derby has a 2-0 record going into Friday’s game against Newton. Last week, Conn helped pave the way for 519 total yards in Derby's 48-0 win against Salina Central. Playing in the largest class, Derby has won the state championship in four of the past six years, including last season.

Player profile

Height/weight: 6-foot-6 and 285 pounds.

Positions: Left tackle.

Rankings: Rivals.com ranks Conn as a three-star prospect and the fifth-ranked player in Kansas. He committed to Nebraska on June 24.

Final schools: Nebraska, Kansas and Oklahoma.

Coach’s point of view

Derby coach Brandon Clark shares some stories about Conn:

Plays that make you rewind the game tape: “He does a really good job of protecting the quarterback with his pass protection, but his run blocking last year really started getting good at driving kids, and there were some plays where he would hit a guy 20 yards down the field, and it’s pretty fun to watch.”

A starter by the middle of his sophomore year: “We had some seniors that he had to beat out. At the beginning of the year, those guys have worked really hard for four years to get there. We knew Alex through practice would do a good job, and he ended up becoming a starter probably Week 3 or Week 4 of his sophomore year.”

When the NCAA Division I schools came calling: “After they watched the film from his junior year and saw how much he developed from sophomore to junior year, sizewise. And then as soon as those guys came in and watched him lift in the weight room and watched him do some agility work, he easily walked away with an offer.”

Weight room evaluation: “Obviously (college coaches) look at film, but they want to come and watch and see if he’s really 6-foot-6 and 285 pounds and as fast as the coach says. The schools send their offensive line coach, and you know there is a chance for an offer. A lot of offensive line coaches come in and watch them work out. It’s happened at a couple of positions, but a lot of people wanted to make sure (Conn) was as tall as advertised, and he is.”

— Brent C. Wagner

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Sports reporter

Brent has worked at the Journal Star for 14 years. His beats include Nebraska volleyball, women's basketball and high school soccer and cross country.

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