Nebraska has two verbal pledges from in-state players in its 2021 recruiting class and it is angling for more.
The Huskers on Friday night extended a scholarship offer to Omaha Westside defensive back Koby Bretz, officially throwing their hat in the ring for the 6-foot-3 three-star prospect.
"I’ve been in contact with (NU inside linebackers coach and lead in-state recruiter) Barrett Ruud for awhile now and I had a sense that the offer would come sooner or later," Bretz told the Journal Star.
Bretz said via social media that he was extended the scholarship offer during a phone call with NU coach Scott Frost.
Bretz is considered one of the best athletes in the state, and his recruiting has picked up in recent months despite the extended NCAA dead period due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Former Nebraska defensive lineman Steve Warren has been around Bretz extensively since November, when Bretz started playing on the Warren Academy's 7-on-7 team. Almost right away, Warren said he knew Bretz had serious potential.
"I was like, there’s a kid and I just can’t figure out why nobody’s offered this kid yet. Honestly, and I’ve told everybody this, he’s probably easily one of the top athletes we’ve ever had come through the Academy in 15 years of doing this," Warren said. "And that includes guys like (Denver Broncos tight end) Noah Fant. He is an outrageous athlete. All of our coaches on the staff were just blown away by his athleticism.
"(Omaha Westside coach Brett) Froendt and those guys deserve a lot of credit. We didn’t really do much except maybe pour some confidence into him."
Bretz earned his first Power Five scholarship offer from Kansas State back in the middle of June. He's piled up offers, too, from FBS schools such as Buffalo, Wyoming, Ohio, Northern Illinois and Miami.
"It's definitely special, just (because) it’s from your hometown, so it makes it a lot more exciting," Bretz said.
He's also the second Westside defensive back to earn an offer from the Huskers in this cycle. His teammate, four-star cornerback Avante Dickerson, is verbally committed to Minnesota and picked the Gophers over a host of other suitors.
NU has split results on its first four offers in the state, landing Kearney Catholic quarterback Heinrich Haarberg and Elkhorn South offensive lineman Teddy Prochazka and missing on Dickerson and Bellevue West wide receiver Keagan Johnson, who is verbally committed to Iowa.
The Huskers have three defensive backs in their 2021 class so far in Marques Buford (Cedar Hill, Texas), Lardarius Webb (Jackson, Mississippi) and Malik Williams (Buford, Georgia).
Warren thinks Bretz could play safety or outside linebacker at the next level.
"Interestingly enough, I think, to me, he’s kind of like a hybrid safety and outside linebacker, so I could see him fitting perfectly in the role (Husker senior) JoJo Domann plays," Warren said. "(Defensive coordinator Erik) Chinander asked me what I thought and I said outside linebacker primarily, but they were looking more like a safety.
"He’s a Power Five gu, that’s what I told him. Either at outside linebacker or at safety."
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