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Senior Nebraska cornerback Dicaprio Bootle is now a captain, but it was an unlikely journey that brought him to Nebraska.
In high school, he attended a satellite camp in his hometown of Miami because Rutgers coaches were going to be there. He had drawn some other interest to play collegiately at the time, but never got a big scholarship offer, he said on Monday.
“I don’t really know why that was,” Bootle said. “I just knew that I was just gonna keep working and just, you know, just to let it happen — just put it all in God’s hands and just let it work for me.”
He ran a 4.3-second 40-yard dash at the satellite camp and finally garnered attention from other schools like UCF and Illinois, among others.
The Nebraska football team on Saturday afternoon announced its five captains for the 2020 season.
But Nebraska stood out. The decision was easy for Bootle because NU was “unmatched.”
“I was nobody,” he said. “I mean, I came in 2016, nobody really gave me a chance. ... I had to wait my turn, I had to sit down and, you know, understand that there were guys that were here before me. There are guys that were a little more seasoned before me.”
He redshirted his freshman year, then made his contributions on the scout team his first year on the field. He appeared in all 12 games as a cornerback in 2017.
His sophomore year was his breakout year at cornerback as he broke up 15 passes, ranking ninth in the country, while posting 39 tackles. Last year, he started at corner, but coaches moved him to safety after injuries in the secondary.
“I just continue to come in every day and just try to work hard — just be a (role) model to everybody,” he said. “No matter where you start, you can always work hard and try to get yourself up out of whatever situation that you’re in.”