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LINCOLN — Ernest Hausmann plans on majoring in computer science once he reaches college, so it made sense that the Columbus football star made a detailed spreadsheet when deciding which of his scholarship offers to accept.
The team to capture his commitment would have to score well in academics, student life and, of course, developing him as a football player.
“Nebraska checked all the boxes,” said Hausmann, the 6-foot-3, 210-pound athlete who became the Huskers’ first commit for the 2022 class with his decision.
But NU coaches did more than that, Hausmann said. They made a connection with three-star prospect. If the COVID pandemic shut down all in person recruiting, Hausmann said, it also left prospects far more time to talk to coaches over Zoom and over the phone. Head coach Scott Frost, defensive coordinator Erik Chinander and inside linebackers coach Barrett Ruud became like “family,” Hausmann said.
His chats with other schools were good, too. NU’s was better.
“Nebraska was most genuine,” Hausmann said Sunday morning before heading off to a work shift at Hy-Vee.
Nebraska was the first offer for Columbus LB Ernest Hausmann, but he's added several more in the three months since, from schools like Iowa, Michigan and Northwestern. An update on his recruitment.
Yes, reports of Nebraska football’s decline with in-state recruiting may be a little exaggerated after the first major prospect in the state to commit, Columbus athlete Ernest Hausmann, committed to the Huskers.
Hausmann had options, too, after receiving offers from Northwestern, Iowa, Michigan State and Virginia, among others. He declined to say which school finished second to the Huskers, preferring a “different” approach to his recruiting process.
Nebraska got there first, however, with a scholarship offer. And Hausmann, in a sense, got first to Nebraska. Adopted from Uganda by a Columbus family, Hausmann said he’s been going to Husker games since he was 8 years old. His favorite NU player would be one of the first he saw live: Lavonte David. Hausmann even owns an artist’s rendering of David “throwing the bones” in a picture — the same as Hausmann did at the end of his two-minute commitment video posted to Twitter.
And the Huskers won out for a player who projects to linebacker — where he had 69 tackles last season — in NU’s system, although his skill set is likely good enough to play receiver at the collegiate level, too. Hausmann led the Discoverers with 34 catches for 447 yards.
“To play Division I football is something I’ve always dreamed of doing,” Hausmann said in his two-minute commitment video posted to Twitter. “And now it’s real. This has been a journey, but this is only the beginning.”
Hausmann thanked his parents, siblings, teammates, trainers, coaches and the city of Columbus itself. At the end of the video, Hausmann said “Go Big Red.”
He is the first commit of Nebraska’s 2022 class. Four other in-state prospects have offers, and two of them, Omaha Central lineman Deshawn Woods and Omaha Burke linebacker Devon Jackson, do not have the Huskers in their top group. Two more prospects, Bellevue West tight ends Kaden Helms and Micah Riley-Ducker, have been more open to playing at Nebraska, in part because of the Huskers’ recent shift toward using their tight ends more.
But Hausmann’s commit makes him the 14th in-state prospect to pledge or sign with Nebraska since coach Scott Frost arrived in 2018. Since that time, Frost has only missed out on a handful of skill players out of the Omaha Metro area, including Xavier Watts (Notre Dame), Keagan Johnson (Iowa) and Avante Dickerson (Oregon).
Hausmann had options just as good as those prospects, and in some cases, better. The opportunity to perhaps become the next Lavonte David was too big to pass up.
“Oh yeah,” Hausmann said when asked if he still follows David’s career in the NFL.