Assuming Jackson Hannah’s verbal commitment sticks and he signs with Nebraska football in December, he will end a more than decade-long drought.
The Cornhuskers, after all, have not signed a prospect out of Tennessee since 2005 when they landed Barry Turner out of Brentwood.
Hannah isn’t the only current connection to the state – walk-on quarterback Andrew Bunch is a Thompson’s Station native who came to NU by way of Scottsdale (Arizona) Community College – but he will be the first signee in 14 years.
And while much focus is put, rightfully, on the Huskers’ recruiting efforts in Florida and Georgia, the Volunteer State is obviously squarely in SEC country.
It doesn’t boast the year-in, year-out talent of other states in the Southeast, and it’s unlikely NU will pull players out of the state every year, but in Hannah’s case, he’s still planning on maximizing his peer recruiting efforts.
“I know a lot of four- and five-star guys,” Hannah said. “I’ve got some good buddies that I’m going to be planting some seeds with. I’ve got a few connections here and there. But I am definitely going to help recruit this class.”
Hannah, the 6-foot-3, 230-pound inside linebacker prospect who committed to the Huskers on Wednesday, has been on the recruiting radar for a long time. Home-state Vanderbilt offered him in March of 2016 and LSU followed shortly after in August. Over the next two years, Hannah said he’s visited around 100 campuses and also taken part in the camp circuit and recruiting whirlwind with many of the Southeast’s best.
Of course, Hannah was recruited to Lincoln by Barrett Ruud and company because of his abilities on the football field. Commits at schools all over the country peer recruit and, by and large, players at the end of the day make their own decisions for their own reasons.
But getting a player the staff is excited about who also happens to be well-known and well-connected in one of the country’s most fertile recruiting areas? Can’t hurt, at least.