Skip to main content
You are the owner of this article.
You have permission to edit this article.
2023 recruits leave Lincoln impressed with Nebraska basketball

2023 recruits leave Lincoln impressed with Nebraska basketball

Meet the Nebraska men's basketball team for the 2021-22 season.

Below, World-Herald staff writer Jimmy Watkins breaks down Husker men's basketball recruits' impressions after visiting Nebraska.

* * *

Jacolb Cole

Measurables: 6-7, 185 pounds

» No. 53 player in Class of 2023

» No. 9 SF in Class of 2023

» No. 7 player in Texas​

Jacolb Cole has stepped inside gyms as large as Nebraska basketball’s Pinnacle Bank Arena, but he’s not used to seeing them on college campuses.

Cole, a four-star 2023 prospect who completed his official visit to Nebraska last weekend, compared PBA to the Houston Rockets’ Toyota Center this week. And when asked about his impressions of Lincoln, PBA was the first thing Cole mentioned.

“It was huge man,” Cole said. “You don’t see that in a college stadium anywhere you go.”

The Huskers also took Cole to Memorial Stadium for Nebraska football’s home game against Michigan last weekend. He called the energy inside the stadium “wild” and couldn’t help but envision those fans inside a rocking PBA.

“They said it gets even louder than that for the other sports,” Cole said.

Cole isn’t ready to commit anywhere yet. He hasn’t even compiled a list of finalists. But the Huskers impressed him this weekend. He likes Fred Hoiberg’s fast-paced offense and enjoyed catching up with Nebraska freshman Keon Edwards, a fellow Houston native.

But he won’t forget stepping onto the Huskers’ home court for the first time. And he was struck by the communal sense fostered by 90,000 people at the football game.

“I keep on coming back to Nebraska’s energy,” Cole said. “It's amazing to me how everyone is stuck together, how they all like playing for each other. That was really good.”

Parker Friedrichsen

Measureables: 6-4, 164 pounds

» No. 109 player in Class of 2023

» No. 24 SG in Class of 2023

» No. 2 player in Oklahoma​

Four-star shooting guard Parker Friedrichsen’s unofficial visit to Nebraska doubled as his family vacation.

Friedrichsen’s father grew up in Lincoln, and all nine of his aunts and uncles live in Lincoln or Omaha. So when Friedrichsen joined Nebraska basketball’s recruiting party on the sidelines before kickoff, he brought 10 family members with him.

None of them were strangers to Memorial Stadium.

“I grew up a Husker fan,” Friedrichsen said. “Those football games are all I knew.”

Now he’s learning more about Nebraska’s basketball program, which landed its best recruiting class in school history during the last cycle. Friedrichsen speaks with Nebraska coach Fred Hoiberg “once or twice” per week about life, basketball and golf.

Friedrichsen hits the course to escape from the gym, and he averaged a 76.5 for his high school team this fall.

“It’s a good getaway,” Friedrichsen said. “I think it’s relaxing and fun.”

Friedrichsen enjoyed his visit in Lincoln, too. After watching Nebraska practice, he thinks Hoiberg’s team has the talent to crack the Top 25. He received positive feedback from Bryce and Trey McGowens about Nebraska’s developmental staff. And even though his Huskers lost to Michigan, he was encouraged by their performance.

Friedrichsen will be back on Oct. 30 for his official visit. He’s no stranger to Lincoln, but it helped to see Hoiberg’s program operate up close last weekend.

College is college, Friedrichsen said, but the relationships at each school make the difference. And after last weekend’s visit, he’s prepared to forge a deeper bond with Nebraska.

“I know what they're all about,” he said. “So just being able to spend more time with them — I think it'd be beneficial.”

Gus Yalden

Measureables: 6-8, 240 pounds

» No. 111 player in Class of 2023

» No. 14 Center in Class of 2023

» No. 9 player in Wisconsin

Four-star center Gus Yalden has always been a Nebraska kid. The IMG Academy (Fla.) prospect lived in Kearney until fifth grade.

But he’d visited Nebraska’s campus twice. And before last weekend’s official visit, he’d never been to a Husker football game.

“It was cool to see it in depth,” Yalden said. “It was pretty apparent to see how much (fans) love their Huskers.”

Yalden left Lincoln feeling good about Nebraska, too. He watched Nebraska basketball practice and visited coach Fred Hoiberg’s home. Yalden said he’s sat through “three or four” hour long film sessions with Hoiberg during the recruiting process. Hoiberg views Yalden as a playmaking forward like Georges Niang and Royce White, both of whom played for Hoiberg at Iowa State.

Niang knows Yalden, and Yalden said the 76ers forward speaks “super highly” of Hoiberg. Yalden likes Hoiberg, too, and he called Pinnacle Bank Arena “my favorite part” of his weekend. Yalden had been to the arena twice as a kid, but as he surveyed the venue years later, he realized how large it was.

“It was like, yeah, that’s a lot of people,” Yalden said.

This weekend's visit also reunited Yalden with 4-star guard Parker Friedrichsen. Yalden and Friedrichsen have played AAU ball together the last two summers, and Yalden said his fellow recruit is his closest friend in basketball.

The friends compared notes after their visits. They plan to attend a Nebraska basketball game this winter. And Yalden thinks the Huskers fit a lot of his preferences.

He likes the coach, the facilities and the big fan base. “NIL is a big thing now,” Yalden said. So Nebraska, which was already one of Yalden’s “priority schools,” remains high on his list.

“It was really cool to see them more in depth,” Yalden said. “I can see myself here. I think that before (I visited) they were pretty high, and they were able to keep themselves pretty high, for sure.”

  • • Texts from columnists
  • • The most breaking Husker news
  • • Cutting-edge commentary
  • • Husker history photo galleries
Get started

Be the first to know

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Related to this story

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.



Breaking News

Huskers Breaking News

News Alert