About Sam McKewon

Sam McKewon covers Nebraska football for The World-Herald. Got a tip, question or rant? Good. Email him at sam.mckewon@owh.com. And follow him on Twitter at @swmckewonOWH. And call him at 402.219.3790.

Posts by Sam McKewon

Practice Report, April 2: Husker D gets after it

Wednesday’s practice in Nebraska’s spring camp was one for defensive purists. The Huskers’ top two units — especially the defensive line — looked strong against the top two units of the Huskers’ offense. Although NU quarterbacks Tommy Armstrong and Johnny Stanton completed a few big passes on broken plays, they were repeatedly hounded by the defense and a rare number of false start penalties.

Defensive coordinator John Papuchis spent much of the last half of practice clapping and fist-pumping. So did defensive line coach Rick Kaczenski. So did their players after several good series.

“That’s the best practice we’ve had a unit defensively, definitely,” said defensive end Randy Gregory, who whipped around any offensive tackle put in front of him Wednesday, including Alex Lewis. “We …

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Women’s basketball: Sadie Murren transferring from Huskers

Sophomore Nebraska guard Sadie Murren will transfer from the program, coach Connie Yori announced Wednesday, with the intention of playing at the Division II or NAIA level.

“We are sorry to see Sadie go, but at the same time we completely understand her desire to play more,” Yori said. “Sadie has been a great representative of our program the past two years. She is not only an outstanding shooter, she is an outstanding student and a great young person.”

A native of Colon, Neb., Murren played in 25 games, averaging 2.6 points and one rebound. She hit 15-of-30 3-pointers.

Murren is the second Husker to transfer in five days. Former Seward guard Hannah Tvrdy transferred last Friday.

The Huskers will have 12 players on scholarship …

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Huskers add former WRs coach to player personnel department

Nebraska coach Bo Pelini confirmed via text Tuesday that a former collegiate wide receivers coach has joined NU’s department of player personnel. The news was first reported by CoachingSearch.com, which cited an anonymous source.

Brian Crist — who last worked as a wide receivers coach at Massachusetts — will be the guy whom Nebraska leans upon to help beef up national recruiting efforts. The Huskers posted jobs last fall to add more members to the recruiting office, and recently former Husker Kenny Wilhite joined the department as a regional recruiting assistant.

Crist helped develop NFL wide receiver Victor Cruz, who starred for the Minutemen before becoming one of the NFL’s best receivers with the New York Giants. Cruz played during Crist’s second stint at …

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Big, Fat Recruiting Update, April 1

It’s April 1, which isn’t any kind of official start of the 2015 recruiting calendar – that started months ago – but it does make it a good time for a big, fat recruiting update on the Huskers’ 2015 class, which generated a ton of momentum right around the 2014 Signing Day and kept it going with the commits of Blue Springs (Mo.) twins Carlos and Khalil Davis.

Video: Sam McKewon on “The Bottom Line”

Here’s a quick look at the upcoming NCAA recruiting calendar:

April 12ACT Test date. Several prospects have already been hitting the books and will take the entrance test on this date, which doubles as Nebraska’s spring game. A later start to the spring game – 2 …

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Camp Chatter: Seen and heard at Husker spring practice, March 31

Heard: “Money! Butter!” — Kenny Bell, Jr. celebrating Terrell Newby’s long touchdown reception from quarterback Johnny Stanton. Newby was wide open after a broken coverage and he easily outran the defense down the sideline for the score. NU’s entire offense celebrated with Newby in the end zone.

Heard: “Woo! Woo! Woo!” — Safety Nate Gerry after he intercepted Tommy Armstrong. Armstrong threw a fade pattern into double coverage. Gerry settled under the ball, picked it off, then jokingly hid the ball under his jersey as he evaded offensive players.

Heard: “Use your help.” — Bo Pelini to cornerback Byerson Cockrell after Armstrong completed a pass to Sam Burtch against him.

Seen: Maliek Collins “tag-sacking” Armstrong. Collins beat Zach Sterup and ran down Armstrong for a …

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Practice Report, March 31: Back at it, with the offense making strides

Nebraska’s first practice since a March 20 scrimmage didn’t look like it, and that’s relatively good news: The Huskers — particularly the offense — returned with a little juice Monday.

“Pretty good coming off the break,” coach Bo Pelini said. NU cut down pre-practice work to analyze scrimmage film from March 20. “I thought the tempo was pretty and I thought the recall was pretty good.”

NU’s offensive skill players were a little sluggish in early drills — more miscommunications and drops than you’d normally see — but that had squared itself toward the end of practice. Backup quarterback Ryker Fyfe even got a drive with the No. 1 offense, and led a touchdown march against the No. 1 defense. Fyfe looked sharp, handling the …

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Women’s basketball: Hannah Tvrdy transferring from Huskers

Former Seward star Hannah Tvrdy will transfer out of the Nebraska women’s basketball program after one year, coach Connie Yori announced Friday night.

A point guard, Tvrdy played sparingly as a true freshman. Though she appeared in 21 games, she averaged 1.5 points 0.4 rebounds and 0.5 assists per game, missing 34 of her 42 shot attempts.

“We appreciate the time and effort Hannah put in to helping to make our team successful this year,” Yori said. “Hannah is an excellent person and a good, young basketball player, and she wants an opportunity to play more basketball in the future. We wish her nothing but the best.”

Nebraska welcomes highly-touted point guard Natalie Romeo to the program this summer. Another 2014 recruit, Memphis star Jasmine …

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Meet the Nebraska women’s basketball starting five

Nebraska’s starting five.

THE STAR: JORDAN HOOPER
The Alliance native isn’t only Big Ten player of the year and one of the top players in Husker history — she ranks second on NU’s career scoring and rebounding charts — she’s beloved by teammates because of her warm, self-effacing demeanor. While the embodiment of unforced humility, Hooper has no problem carrying the team on her back.

THE STOPPER: HAILIE SAMPLE
The junior has started every game in her career because she’s never lost sight of her job on the team. She plays defense — often on the opponent’s best scorer — rebounds, runs the floor and occasionally scores a timely basket under the hoop. Sample understands the Huskers’ scheme as well as anyone.

THE SPARKPLUG: TEAR’A

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Practice Report, March 19: Injury updates, Maliek Collins making a move

Several quick updates from Nebraska’s spring camp, where the Huskers worked out in full pads Wednesday for more than two hours. We’ll start with injuries.

Junior Crete center Ryne Reeves left the practice field on a stretcher in an ambulance, coach Bo Pelini said, after complaining of pain in his neck after a play. Pelini didn’t see the injury as it happened. Pelini was able to talk briefly about the injury because Reeves’ dad was at practice.

“Anytime you have pain in your neck, we’re going to treat it with caution,” Pelini said. “We think it’s precautionary, but we’re going to make sure they find out exactly what’s going on. It’s precautionary. That’s how it works … Ryne’s dad was here, he saw what happened …

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Recruiting: 2014 signee Larenzo Stewart headed to Iowa Western

One 2014 Nebraska signee — running back Larenzo Stewart — will spend at least two years at nearby powerhouse Iowa Western , Reivers coach Scott Strohmeier confirmed Tuesday. Stewart’s signed his letter-of-intent Tuesday morning. The news was first reported by Husker Online.

The 5-foot-6, 170-pound running back from Klein Oak High School in Spring, Texas, will likely redshirt, Strohmeier said, with the idea of playing one year at IWCC and having three years left at Nebraska. Strohmeier worked with Nebraska offensive line coach Barney Cotton — primary recruiter of IWCC — and later Husker running backs coach Ron Brown on the placement.

“Larenzo’s still trying to academically qualify (for Nebraska), but this is a Plan B,” Strohmeier said. “He’s a tough football player. The …

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