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Nebraska's best high school football players: Meet the state's top linebackers

Some of the top linebackers this season in Nebraska prep football
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There were 14 guys in Nebraska 11-man football and more than 50 in eight-man football who made 100 or more tackles last season. Not every member of this list is part of that one, but you can be sure there are playmakers, run stuffers and hard hitters in the 21 members chosen to represent the best in the Cornhusker state. 

Dash Bauman – Lincoln East Senior – 6-3, 200

Bauman is a Wyoming recruit who gets a lot of attention for his work as the Spartans’ running back. He’s averaging 5.8 yards per carry this season, eight touchdowns and has nearly 1,000 career rushing yards and 15 trips to the end zone. But it’s his work on the other side of the ball that has earned him a chance at Division I.

Bauman has over 200 career tackles, was one short of 99 in a season when he was a sophomore and is the quarterback of the Spartan defense. Whether he’s advancing the ball down the field or making stops, he’s the guy East looks at to make plays.

“Dash is an All-American guy. He is a 4.0 student, a student of the game and an outstanding leader on and off the field,” East coach John Gingery said. “He has a great work ethic and is willing to do the little things to be the best he can be. He helps his teammates get better any way he can. Dash makes those around him better. He has a nose for the football, and he is a very good running back as well.”

Christian Jones – Westside – 6-4, 215

Jones looks like he’ll be the top recruit in the state for the Class of 2025. He’s got more than a year to make his decision, and there are plenty of suitors. He currently has 16 scholarship offers and the opportunity to play in whatever conference he chooses.

Jones is a top-150 recruit according to most rating services and is coming off a season in which he made 60 tackles, five for loss and three sacks. He was an integral part of Westside’s 2022 state title, and for a sophomore among a wealth of talent at the school, that’s saying a lot about his current abilities and potential for future stardom.

Through the first six games of 2023, he had 28 stops, six behind the line, two bass breakups, a fumble recovery and a forced fumble.

“Christian is an honor student with very high character,” Warrior coach Paul Limongi said. “He’s big, strong and fast. Christian is impactful on both sides of the ball. He loves to do the dirty work and is very coachable. Explosiveness is his trademark.”

Kevon Newsome – Omaha Central – 6-1, 215

Newsome is a guy who is described by his coach as having a special ability to know where to be on each play. The numbers agree with that assessment.

In the first six games of 2023, Newsome had already registered 68 tackles and picked off two passes. Three times he’s had double-digit stops and put together a rather impressive 20-tackle performance in a Week 4 loss to Elkhorn South. Two weeks earlier he was just one stop behind that in a game against Gretna.

Newsome burst onto the scene last year with 130 tackles as a junior at Omaha Benson. He has since transferred to Omaha Central and has kept the momentum rolling. He’s not currently receiving a ton of recruiting attention but that will pick up steam as more teams see his tape and realize he’s likely one of the 10 best players in Nebraska overall, not just at his position. He’s currently seventh in the state in total tackles.

All of his skills translate, in a way, to the basketball court where his physical brand of play led the Metro Conference in steals.

“Kevon is very instinctual, technical, and physical. He gets off blocks well and has a great nose for ball carriers,” Eagles assistant coach Abdul Muhammad said. “He led the state last year in tackles and will be in contention again this year.”

Sam Brummund – Skutt Catholic – 6-3, 220

Middle linebackers are often described as the quarterback of the defense. That’s how Brummund’s head coach, Matt Turman, sees his senior leader on the defensive side of the ball.

Turman describes him as a guy with a high football IQ who can analyze an offense and determine what a playcaller is trying to accomplish. And as analytical as he can be, his physicality is just as obvious.

In a game this season, Brummund delivered one of his trademark big hits and had his nose broken by the force from his helmet. With blood gushing, Brummund attempted to remedy the situation with as much gauze up his nose as possible. However, there are guidelines about blood on a player and on a player’s jersey. He frantically tried to return to the game as quickly as possible while his coaching staff and athletic trainers cleaned him up as best they could. Of course, it wasn’t fast enough for his liking. It’s that type of story that makes Turman refer to Brummund as an “old school” middle linebacker.

Last fall, Brummund’s junior season included 68 tackles, seven tackles for loss and two interceptions. His opportunities at the next level include Sioux Falls, Midland and Carthage College.

“Sam has a great nose for the football. He has a knack for always being around the ball and making plays,” Turman said. “He is a very physical kid who enjoys the physicality of the game, and that is a great trait for a middle backer. Sam also has a great motor. He never thinks that he is out of the play and pursues well to the ball.

Kale Gustafson – Osceola – 6-5, 230

It’s difficult to compete in an era with an all-time superstar, but Gustafson has carved out his own place in Osceola history.

For the past three years, the Bulldog senior has had teammate Isaiah Zelasney by his side. Zelasney was a back-to-back four-gold winner at the state track meet in 2021 and 2022, had a football career that ended with over 4,000 rushing yards and 101 touchdowns and had a basketball career with over 1,500 points and an average of 18.9 points per game.

Gustafson lacks the type of speed Zelasney utilized on the track, but he’s been just as impressive in his own right. Through the first six games of 2023, he had over 2,900 career rushing yards, 66 total touchdowns and averages a double-double in basketball with 1,448 career points.

And he does all that while being a linebacker who already has over 300 career tackles, eight interceptions and five fumble recoveries. As a sophomore, he made 140 stops and was sixth in the state for eight-man football with that figure.

Zelasney graduated last May and left quite a legacy. Gustafson’s is a little different but one that makes him second to none in the annals of Bulldog athletics.

“Kale is extremely physical and athletic, which allows him to do a lot of what he's able to do on defense,” Osceola coach Luke Ericson said. “He has a rare combination of size, speed, and strength. He is about 6-foot-5, 230 pounds with very long arms and is hard to get your hands on to block. Also, he is one of the smartest players I have coached and has a natural feel for where the ball is going. He can visually see what all eye players are doing on the field and is rarely fooled or tricked by misdirection. He is great in coverage as well and has led our team in interceptions multiple times dropping into coverage.”

Justyce Hostetler – Grand Island – 5-11, 215

He’s got the range to make plays all over the field, the closing speed to deliver a blow when he arrives and always puts himself in position to make a play. Justyce Hostetler is perhaps the best player on one of the state’s best teams but his location out in the middle part of the state often makes his attention equivalent to that of a player in eight-man football.

Well, if he’s a hidden gem, he’s one that shines bright, often in blinding fashion, to opponents on Friday nights. Hostetler made 103 tackles, six for loss and had four sacks in his junior campaign and is up to 220 total tackles, 11 TFLs, six sacks and three fumble recoveries in three years as a starter at middle linebacker. He’s been more important than ever this season with a somewhat inconsistent Islander offense. He started the season with 15 tackles in a 28-27 win over North Platte and has been a consistent stopper, once again, in the middle of the Grand Island defense.

“Justyce is a remarkable young man. He’s a great leader, a team captain and has a great positive presence on and off the field,” GISH head coach Jeffery Tomlin said. “Justyce is a three-year starter at middle linebacker and is one of our all-time best. His instincts, range, closing speed and tackling ability are excellent. Additionally, he can get us into the autos, checks and calls that we need to be in. Justyce is one of the best young men I have ever had the honor of coaching.”

Hank Hudson – Boone Central – 6-1, 220

The son of a coach, Hudson has been around the game since he could walk, following in his dad’s footsteps and seeing the game up close. That’s paying off for him now during a senior season in which Boone Central is a perfect 6-0 and ranked No. 1 through the first two-thirds of the season.

His role in that start includes 50 tackles, two games with 10 or more and three tackles for loss. That’s all very impressive, but unfortunately, it’s off the pace he’s set the last two years. He made 83 tackles as a sophomore and 90 as a junior. Hudson hasn’t taken a step back, he’s just so good that he’s set a very high standard. He’s still making plays when it matters most and has contributed more on offense as a senior, averaging 7.4 yards per carry with four touchdowns.

Boone Central is in the midst of a resurgence after a few years of losing seasons, and Hudson is one of the reasons why. His work ethic started in the garage on a homemade 2x4 wooden rack during Covid and has only grown since then. Currently, he can squat 475 pounds, bench 315 and hang clean 325.

Hudson is always hungry for more tackles and more of mom’s home cooking. But just like there’s a different opponent on the schedule every Friday night, Hanks isn’t a leftover guy. He’s hungry for a new taste every night.

“He has good speed for his size, but Hank is strong with good vision and good hands. He is hard to block, and running backs don't fall forward when they meet,” Hank’s dad and head coach, Mark, said. “He's been in the middle of our defense for three years, and along with his other senior teammates, he makes corrections and adjustments before coaches do.”

Beau Ryan – Westside – 5-11, 200

When we asked coach Paul Limongi for comments on Beau Ryan, the message he sent was the word tough in all caps and four exclamation points. Anyone on the other side of a Ryan tackle would certainly agree.

Ryan is the unique combination of power and fundamentals who not only makes the stop but inflicts some damage while doing so. He did it 93 times last season, made 15 tackles for loss, sacked the quarterback five times and took an interception back to the house. Westside, like many programs, gives away weekly awards to players based on performance from the previous game. Ryan is a regular recipient of the appropriately named "Hammer Award”.

He was one of the leaders of a 2022 defense that helped Westside win a state championship by holding six opponents to fewer than 20 points and three to under 10 including a shutout. He and Curt Cubrich made quite the tandem last fall. Now on his own as the focus of the defense, he’s amassed 40 tackles through the first six games, 31 of those on his own and picked off a pass that he returned 17 yards.

“Beau attacks the football on defense and brings a thump,” Limongi said. “He loves the game, and it shows on game night. Beau is a sideline-to-sideline player who plays with great angles and unbelievable effort.”

Leyton Snodgrass – York – 6-4, 205

Snodgrass is a name football fans will recognize from the last decade-plus of high school football in the state. Probably the most recognizable Snodgrass on that list is Garrett, a 2018 three-star Husker recruit. Glen Snodgrass, Garrett and Leyton’s father, coaches the Dukes’ football program and has helped deliver a 2017 state championship and a runner-up in 2013.

Leyton has one more year left to play for his father and try to match his brother’s championship, but even if that’s not in the cards he’s a heck of a talent in his own right. Snodgrass had four sacks last year as a sophomore, played in all 24 games for York’s basketball state tournament team and has received gameday invites to FCS powers North Dakota State and South Dakota State as well as St. Thomas.

He jumps off the tape when reviewing Snodgrass’ play on film not only because his size makes him stand out but because he adds physicality to that length.

DNA and genetics have, obviously, been helpful. But he’s also a guy who’s not afraid of hard work. Last spring he became one of the first three members of the York 1000-pound club for his efforts in the weight room

“Leyton's size and athleticism are what make him a great player,” head coach and Dad, Glen Snodgrass said. “Leyton can be out of position and still make plays because he’s 6-5 with very long arms, size and agility. He has jumping ability that you generally don't find in a 6-4, 205 kid. Leyton also has very good hands and could make for a top-notch flex tight end at the next level.”

Eli Holt – Norris – 6-2, 220

Middle linebacker isn’t a position for the faint of heart. It’s also not a spot where coaches can afford to experiment. But it wasn’t exactly an experiment when the Norris coaching staff made Holt the starting Mike linebacker as a sophomore. Even though he didn’t have the normal experience as most starters leading the defense, Holt was an exception to the rule.

He seized the opportunity and has been leading the Titan defense ever since. His first year ended with 78 tackles, four TFLs, three fumble recoveries and an interception. He followed his rookie campaign with a junior year that was eight tackles short of 100, two TFLs, a pick, three more interceptions and a defensive touchdown. Through the first six games of 2023, he had already piled up 61 tackles with seven for loss and two more defensive scores.

And yet, even with all of those numbers, Holt likely doesn’t get the attention he deserves. Playing at a Class B school near Lincoln where the Class A programs take up most of the media coverage, and being a defender, Holt is mostly an afterthought. He’ll be a diamond in the rough should he choose to continue his football career into college.

“Eli is an amazing young man! He loves to compete and has a very high motor,” Norris coach Ty Twarling said. “He has been starting at MLB for the past three years and just has a knack for the ball. He has great instincts, speed, physicality and is very strong with a 6-foot-2, 215-pound frame. Teams are being forced to double-team him. Eli has a lot of intangibles he brings to the table.”

Kyler Lauridsen – Bennington – 5-11, 165

Bennington coach Kameron Lenhart calls Lauridsen the best athlete he’s ever coached. That’s quite the compliment. Bennington has won back-to-back state titles with players that include a quarterback who passed and rushed for more than 1,000 yards, a running back who amassed more than 3,000 yards in a season, a receiver with more than 1,000 yards and two players that racked up more than 100 tackles in a season.

Those last two didn’t include Lauridsen, although he’s done that also – making 103 stops as a junior to go with 14 tackles for loss, a sack and an interception. He’s a sure tackler, he can cover receivers or backs out of the backfield and is a natural athlete.

Oh, and he’s also a back-to-back state wrestling champ. His brother Kael won his fourth straight state wrestling title this past February and is a Husker wrestling commit. Kyler is halfway to that feat and will do whatever is necessary to make it happen.

“He is so natural in everything he does. His ability to make blockers miss in space and make tackles from every angle are what make him a great defensive player,” Coach Lenhart said. “He is also a very smart football player who does not make very many mistakes. I think his success comes from him growing up with his older brother. If anything, it made him tough. Kyler is one of the toughest players I have coached. I watched him win a state championship with a broken finger.”

Grady Robbins – Gering – 6-1, 205

In senior Grady Robbins, the Bulldogs have an unquestioned leader. Each of the past two seasons, when the team has taken the time to vote on captains, Robbins has received over 85% of the vote.

Coaches and those around the Gering problem said it’s not hard to figure out why. No one else pours himself into preparation as much as Robbins. He’s not only watching his highlights and those of his friends but systematically breaking down opponents just like his coaches. Bulldog head coach Danny O’Boyle said Robbins watches again and again and can quickly pick out what’s coming based on alignment and tendencies.

Robbins has 201 career tackles and made 91 of those last year with nine tackles for loss, three sacks, two forced fumbles and two pass breakups. Through six games this fall, he had already amassed 59 stops and had three games with more than 10.

Physically, O’Boyle said Robbins uses his body to punish ball carriers and tackles with a brute force that sets the tone and leaves a lasting impression. And as mean and nasty as he can be in competition, he’s just as friendly and inviting off the gridiron.

“I wholeheartedly agree that Grady is one of the top linebackers in the state of Nebraska, and whoever decides to invest in him at the next level is going to get an absolute steal of a recruit,” O’Boyle said. “I have a one-year-old son, and I can truly say that I hope he carries himself like Grady Robbins when he gets older. He is a great leader, role model and positive influence not only for our program but for our community as a whole.”

Canyon Hosick – McCook – 5-9, 175

If you’re in McCook or the McCook area, chances are you’ve known who Canyon Hosick is for a while. Since his youth days, Bison coach Joe Vetrovsky said it’s always been obvious where Hosick is on the field. He’s been making plays and making a name for himself ever since he first put on shoulder pads and a helmet.

The McCook coaching staff, and everyone around the program for that matter, naturally expected playing time and contributions once he finally stepped on the varsity field. He hasn’t disappointed. Following a limited role as a sophomore and 30 tackles, he amassed an impressive 90 stops as a junior with an interception and a fumble recovery. He’s a guy the Bison look toward when a play needs to be made.

And it isn’t just on defense. Although it’s typically not advisable to put your signal caller in the center of the defense, Hosick is also the McCook quarterback. Whether throwing passes, taking snaps, handing off or making stops, his awareness and football IQ are top-notch.

“Being a young player and newly inserted into the starting lineup, naturally nerves would normally be present. Not with Canyon; he hit the ground running and played exceptionally well, which leads us to where we are today,” coach Vetrovsky said. “He is the ultimate ‘gamer’, meaning that when the lights are the brightest, he amps it up even that much more than he already does. When you take that and then add in impactful leadership, you then have one special player.”

Mavrick Hagemann – Elkhorn Valley – 5-7, 160

Hagemann is one of our small-school representatives on this list. The Elkhorn Valley senior hails from a consolidated school that has less than 50 boys in its freshmen through junior classes. At schools like his, the best guys have to do everything.

Hagemann fills that role as a linebacker and a running back. Through the first six games of his final varsity season, Hagemann’s career includes over 1,700 yards rushing and 24 touchdowns plus 275 tackles, 19 TFLs and five sacks on defense.

He has six games with more than 100 yards rushing, one with over 200 yards, 15 games with double-digit tackles and a single-game best of 20 tackles as a sophomore.

Like a lot of guys on this list, he’s also an excellent wrestler. Hageman was a Class D runner-up last season who made his run to the state title match as a first-time state qualifier.

“Mavrick is as tough of a football player as you will find. This kid doesn't know the meaning of quit,” Elkhorn Valley coach Brandon Black said. “He reads plays extremely fast, which helps him be in position to make plays. Mavrick has a unique ability to penetrate the line of scrimmage and disrupt the backfield. He has vastly improved his pass coverage this year, which has elevated his overall versatility on defense. Mavrick is extremely coachable and looks to improve continuously.”

Cael Peters – Mitchell – 5-10, 210

Mitchell coach Nick Kuxhausen said Cael Peters has “created an identity of toughness in our program.” That influence has been part of the reason why Mitchell has won eight games in two of the past three seasons. The Tigers are also 5-1 through the first two-thirds of 2023.

Peters enters his senior season as one of the top-10 returning tacklers in the state and a rare mix of talent that allows him to lead the Mitchell defense as a linebacker and the Tiger offense as the quarterback. Oh, and he went 40-6 as a wrestler in his junior year, earned a sixth-place state medal and was the fourth-place state medalist as a golfer in the spring. He really can do it all.

"Cael is one of the most talented and toughest players I have coached in 12 years. He has intangibles you cannot coach,” Kuxhausen said. “He can play any position on the field at a high level. He took over as quarterback his junior year and excelled at it. He is a natural inside linebacker and has been close to 100 tackles in both his sophomore and junior seasons. His natural athletic instincts make him the linebacker he is.”

Peters made 90 tackles as a sophomore and 85 as a junior. He has 226 for his career to go with six pass breakups and five interceptions. Offensively, he’s a dual-threat QB with 1,234 career passing yards and nearly 2,000 rush yards. He’s accounted for 42 touchdowns in the past three years with his legs and his arm.

“He is a great leader and is a high-character kid,” Kuxhausen said. “He has qualities you cannot coach, and he will find his way on the field in any college program that pursues him.”

Jackson Daum – Gothenburg – 6-3, 195

Daum is a guy who’s flying under the radar with one more season yet to go. The more he plays and puts himself on tape, the more schools are going to see his potential as a Division-I recruit.

Daum is instinctual in the run game, reacts immediately, fills the proper gap and has range covering backs and receivers. When he arrives at the ball carrier, Daum delivers a technically sound hit that also inflicts damage.

Six Star Football, a recruiting organization in the Midwest that ranges from Oklahoma to Illinois, was so impressed with Daum at its Nebraska showcase that he was invited to the All-American Finals in Kansas City in June.

Daum is also a previous “Lifter of the Year” award winner at Gothenburg and the only junior captain on the team.

“Jackson leads the team by example. He puts in extra work, extra running and skill work to improve his game,” Gothenburg coach Craig Haake said. “He seeks information on how to improve, asks good questions, follows directions and puts info to good use. Jackson is very coachable and has an excellent voice relaying info from coach to other players. At 6-foot-3 and 195 pounds he is strong and he brings it when he tackles - a physical presence in the middle of our defense. He’s a great kid and an excellent student; this young man is the total package. I can't say enough good things about him.”

Chris Thiessen – Elkhorn North – 6-0, 185

Elkhorn North is a program on the rise. Right in the middle of that ascension is its senior linebacker. Thiessen put together 78 tackles and 2 and 1/2 loss as a junior and was a major factor in the Wolves’ football program making it to the playoffs for the first time last fall.

This fall, Thiessen and Elkhorn North have won the first six games on the schedule and defeated Elkhorn for the first time in program history. He has an interception, 24 tackles and more of the solid, every play work that has made him, arguably, the Wolves’ best player.

Coach Sam Stanley said Thiessen’s knowledge of the Elkhorn North defensive scheme and his understanding of the team’s identity allows him to make plays every chance he gets. He can cover a lot of ground in a short amount of time and adds a physical element to every play he makes.

“Chris is a tremendous player, person and leader,” Stanley said. “He was voted a captain by his teammates, an honor that is very deserved. Chris puts others before himself on the field and in his personal life, where he spends a lot of his free time volunteering with his church. We are very proud of Chris and grateful that he is a part of our program.”

Thiessen is also an excellent baseball player who will be on the diamond for Missouri Western at the next level. This past spring he hit .448 with 18 RBIs, six doubles, a triple and a home run. He had an on-base percentage of .597 and an OPS of 1.117.

Korvin Fritz – Pierce – 5-10, 160

No one in Nebraska 11-man football had more tackles than Fritz last season. Pierce’s dynamic middle linebacker put together nine games of double-digit tackles during the Bluejays’ 13-0 2022 state championship season. He also had seven TFLs, a sack in the state title win over Aurora and has 201 career tackles in an illustrious Pierce career that will surpass 30 games his season.

Despite his exploits, Fritz was only an all-state honorable mention award winner in 2022. And he’s getting the same sort of treatment on the recruiting trail. His size doesn’t jump off the page, but his ability on film should open some eyes.

Fritz is aggressive, he puts pressure on the offense and, although he might be outweighed by many ball carriers and quarterbacks, he can deliver physicality.

In the first six games of his senior season, Fritz had put together 44 tackles and five tackles for loss. With that kind of a start, and another expected run in the playoffs for the Bluejays, Fritz will have the chance to achieve a personal goal. He put on the number 50 this year just like older brother Colton, a 2022 Pierce graduate. Colton set a program record with 284 career tackles. Korvin has his eyes on changing “the first name on the record board.

Korvin is a great student of the game. He knows how to dissect blocking schemes and is truly a quarterback of the defense,” Pierce coach Darin Suckstorf said. “Korvin has been voted captain by his teammates this season. Not only is Korvin a great football player and leader, but he is also a great young man of character.”

Clay Shafer – Roncalli Catholic – 6-0, 225

Linebackers are most often the communicators of the defense, calling the front and organizing teammates based on the offensive formation. Shafer speaks up in that matter and more for the Crimson Pride.

He’s coming off a season with 90 tackles and nine TFLs that earned him all-state honorable mention honors, and he hasn’t slowed down one bit. Shafer put up 58 tackles and an interception through Roncalli’s first six games. He had 20 stops in a game against Pierce and another 12 the next week against Boys Town.

Last spring, Shafer participated in a showcase for the recruiting service Six Star Football and impressed the staff enough to earn an invite to the All-American Finals in Kansas City.

His talent extends to the baseball diamond where he’s also an all-state honorable mention. Shafer is a career .336 hitter who had 10 extra-base hits in 71 at-bats last season, drove in 12, had an on-base percentage of .442 and an OPS of .968.

“Clay is an extremely hard worker. He is the best vocal leader I have ever coached,” Roncalli coach Tom Kassing said. “Clay is physical and sees plays develop in real time.”

Mason Chandler – Bellevue East – 6-1, 175

There are a few guys on this list who serve as their team’s quarterback and linebacker. At most schools, if guys have to play both ways, quarterbacks are typically put in the secondary, and often at safety, to try and limit contact. At almost every Class A school, where enrollment allows for depth, playing both ways is rare for nearly every player, and almost unheard of for a quarterback. That’s not the case for Chandler, who might be the best combination of quarterback/linebacker on this list.

The Bellevue East senior will surpass 2,000 career passing yards this season and has 30 career touchdowns between throwing and passing. Defensively, he went over 200 career tackles in Week 6 when he had nine tackles and one for loss in a win over Benson.

Chandler has two games with 10 or more tackles in his senior year and 11 of those over the past three seasons. Last year he had 94 stops to go with 1,054 passing yards.

Sawyer Schilke – Kearney – 6-3, 230

At his size, Schilke has the potential to continue as a linebacker or even potentially a defensive end in college football. Wherever he ends up, Schilke brings a skill set that includes block shedding, textbook tackling and relentless pursuit. Check out his film when he’s on a blitz and you’ll notice his closing speed and how he takes a good angle to get to the quarterback or running back.

Schilke burst onto the scene as a sophomore who played in nine of 10 Kearney games, made 48 tackles, five for loss and one forced fumble. He’s continued into his junior year by nearly surpassing that total and racking up 10 tackles for loss through just five games. Half of those TFLs are sacks.

He started this fall with six tackles, four tackles for loss and three sacks in the season opener against Lincoln East. His 2022 stats and physical measurements attracted some attention, but it has taken off since that dynamic performance against East.

Schilke was on the sideline for the Nebraska/Louisiana Tech game, the Minnesota/Louisiana game and has an invite to a Kansas State game and a North Dakota State game.

--Nathan Charles