LINCOLN — Nebraska held on to its final scholarship for the 2020 class in case a high-impact playmaker came along. The months-long patience paid off Friday as one of the country’s highest-rated junior college prospects chose the Huskers.
In a Friday night Twitter announcement, Independence (Kan.) Community College cornerback Nadab Joseph committed to NU. A four-star and top-100 national prospect out of Miami (Fla.) Noland High School, the 6-foot-2, 193-pound cornerback had been committed to LSU and Alabama before signing with Georgia in the 2018 cycle. He never made it to Athens, enrolling instead at Independence, where he redshirted in 2018 and played just five games in 2019.
Joseph is tabbed the No. 3 overall juco product in the 2020 class and No. 1 corner, according to the 247Sports composite. He has three years to play three. He graduated from Independence in May, then took classes in Miami in order to raise his grade-point average and become NCAA-eligible.
“He’s a long, tall kid who can run,” Independence coach Kiyoshi Harris said. “He’s going to make someone a heck of a football player.”
Joseph needed more maturity when he arrived at Independence, Harris said, and has improved in his off-the-field discipline.
"He's just got to keep growing up off the field," Harris said. "He's not a bad kid, he just needs to take care of business."
Joseph’s arrival means added depth and flexibility for a Nebraska secondary likely to start three seniors in safeties Deontai Williams and Marquel Dismuke and corner Dicaprio Bootle. Bootle and NU’s other presumptive starter at corner, junior Cam Taylor-Britt, both have shown an ability to man other positions. Bootle started multiple games at safety last year, and Taylor-Britt moved all over and was part of nickel packages.
Nebraska signed five scholarship defensive backs in the 2020 class, including Lincoln Southeast grad Isaac Gifford, who will go on scholarship in the fall. But two of those signees, Henry Gray and Jaiden Francois, have already left the program.
Nebraska frequently plays the junior college market after the end of the traditional signing period. The Huskers added junior college defensive lineman Keem Green last summer. One summer before that, another cornerback, Will Jackson, signed with the Huskers, only to leave months later during camp. When Scott Frost and secondary coach Travis Fisher were at Central Florida, they signed during the summer Mike Hughes, who later became a first-round NFL draft pick.
In three recruiting cycles, Nebraska has signed 14 junior college players, the most of any Big Ten team.
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