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Recruiting - Nebrasketball Scholarship Chart Review

The next two seasons look very promising for the Cornhuskers and success could lead to the next level in 2016-2017.

Ronald Martinez

As Nebraska fans turn the page to football season after one of the more successful basketball seasons in Cornhusker history, it seems like a good time to see where Nebrasketball stands on the scholarship front right now. Here is what the scholarship chart currently looks like:

2014-2015

2015-2016

2016-2017

1

David Rivers (Sr)

Benny Parker (Sr)

Tai Webster (Sr)

2

Leslee Smith (Sr)

Shavon Shields (Sr)

Tarin Smith (Jr)

3

Moses Ayegba (Sr)

Terran Petteway (Sr)

Nick Fuller (Jr)

4

Benny Parker (Jr)

Walter Pitchford (Sr)

Jacob Hammond (Jr)

5

Shavon Shields (Jr)

Tai Webster (Jr)

Keanu Pinder (Jr)

6

Terran Petteway (Jr)

Tarin Smith (So)

Open

7

Walter Pitchford (Jr)

Nick Fuller (So)

Open

8

Tai Webster (So)

Jacob Hammond (So)

Open

9

Tarin Smith (Fr)

Open

Open

10

Nick Fuller (Fr)

Open

Open

11

Jacob Hammond (Fr)

Open

Open

12

Open

Open

Open

13

Open

Open

Open

Nebraska is a team that many recruits out there are starting to take a peek at after last year's success. This season could be crucial to continuing that momentum which you can see is desperately needed as the current team is very top heavy as far as upper classmen are concerned. By 2016-2017, there are only 5 players who will still be eligible which leaves a lot of uncertainly for a program looking for consistency.

This year's team is set up very well, although I have a feeling Coach Miles would like to find another scholarship player to help the depth a bit. With only 11 players, three of which are freshman, you aren't left with a tremendous amount of depth if the starters are getting into foul trouble. The success of the Cornhuskers will clearly be driven by junior Terran Petteway and he will have plenty of help with Walter Pitchford, Shavon Shields, and incoming transfer Moses Ayegba (Abraham). The expectation for this team is clearly to make the NCAA Tournament again and I don't see any reason why that won't happen if everyone stays healthy. The B1G is down this year as far as talent is concerned, so Nebrasketball will have every opportunity for even more success than they had last year.

Next season is also set up very nicely, as all the main cogs will return pending any early departures to the NBA (mainly Petteway). Three seniors will depart, and while all nice pieces - none of them are going to be key drivers to success or failure of the overall team. I would look for Coach Miles to continue to work the transfer magic which has been so successful in the past and also use the current momentum he has to land higher rated recruits compared to the past in order to fill his five open slots for next season.

The elephant in the room, based on the above chart, is the 2016-2017 season with only five scholarship players. That shows a lot of scholarship imbalance with the current team and represents a lot of work for Coach Miles and his staff to do in the next couple of seasons to help build the relationships necessary to land a competitive team for the Fall of 2016. It could actually end up working out very well for Nebraska from my view though. The next two years appear, based on last year's results and the current roster, to be potentially very successful. If the Cornhuskers can put together three straight highly successful seasons, more talented recruits are going to take notice which could lead to an influx of talent not seen before in Lincoln for the 2016-2017 season. Coach Miles will also be able to preach playing time which is always a key with the upper echelon of recruits.

A lot will be riding on the next couple of seasons, but I think Coach Miles and his team are set up very well if everything plays out as planned.