Nearly midway through what so far has been a winless season in Lincoln, the personnel upheaval is continuing. Reportedly.
According to multiple media outlets in the area, Greg Bell will not make the trip to Madison this weekend for Nebraska’s game Saturday against Wisconsin. Rivals.com is reporting that Bell has decided to leave the Cornhuskers and transfer, although the Omaha World-Herald writes that “NU is not confirming Bell’s departure and will not have a comment on his situation until after the Wisconsin game.”
Bell had started the first three games of the season, but was benched ahead of the Week 5 loss to Purdue and played sparingly last weekend. If the junior were to leave now without playing another down for the ‘Huskers, he’d be able to take advantage of the new redshirt rule and retain a season of eligibility that he could use elsewhere.
Through four games, Bell was third on the team, and second among running backs, with 173 yards rushing on his 35 carries. Just two of those carries came in the loss to the Boilermakers this past Saturday.
Should he end up transferring, Bell would become at least the 15th player to leave the program since Scott Frost took over last December. The other 14 are offensive lineman Bryan Brokop, wide receiver Zack Darlington (HERE) offensive lineman Michael Decker (HERE), tight end David Engelhaupt (HERE), quarterback Tristan Gebbia (HERE), linebacker Willie Hampton (HERE), defensive back Will Jackson (HERE), wide receiver Tyjon Lindsey (HERE), fullback Ben Miles (HERE), quarterback Patrick O’Brien (HERE), linebacker Avery Roberts (HERE), tight end Matt Snyder (HERE) inside linebacker Andrew Ward (HERE) and wide receiver Keyan Williams (HERE). An even dozen of those 14 transferred, while one of the remaining two, Decker, retired from football and the other, Darlington, joined the Army.
Even as summer camp is under a month away from kicking off, the attrition in Lincoln isn’t easing up.
As noted by the Lincoln Journal Star, a pair of tight ends, junior Matt Snyder and sophomore David Engelhaupt, are no longer listed on Nebraska’s updated online roster. A school spokesperson subsequently confirmed that the pair are no longer a part of the Cornhuskers football program, although no reason or reasons for their departures were given.
Neither player caught a pass during their time with the ‘Huskers. Snyder was a three-star member of NU’s 2015 recruiting class, while Engelhaupt was a two-star signee in 2016.
Including Engelhaupt and Snyder, a total of 10 Cornhuskers players have left the program since Scott Frost was hired in December of last year. The other eight are offensive lineman Bryan Brokop, wide receiver Zack Darlington (HERE) offensive lineman Michael Decker (HERE), linebacker Willie Hampton (HERE), fullback Ben Miles (HERE), quarterback Patrick O’Brien (HERE), inside linebacker Andrew Ward (HERE) and wide receiver Keyan Williams (HERE). Eight of those 10 transferred, while one of the remaining two, Decker, retired from football and the other, Darlington, joined the Army.
By the Journal Star‘s count, NU now has 83 scholarship players, two below the NCAA-mandated 85-man limit.
A little over two weeks after leaving the Big Ten, Keyan Williams has landed in the MAC.
Williams revealed on his personal Twitter account late Tuesday morning that he has committed to continuing his collegiate playing career at Ball State. The wide receiver had announced on the same social media website May 14 that he would be transferring from Nebraska.
As Williams is leaving the Cornhuskers as a graduate transfer, he’ll be eligible to play immediately in 2018 for the Cardinals. The upcoming season will be the receiver’s final year of eligibility.
This will mark the third school for which Williams has played.
After beginning his collegiate career at Fresno State, Williams transferred to Nebraska after the 2015 season to join his father, Cornhuskers’ wide receivers coach Kevin Williams, in Lincoln. Mike Riley and his entire coaching, the elder Williams included, were fired at the end of the 2017 season.
Williams caught seven passes for 34 yards during his time with the Bulldogs. He sat out the 2016 season to satisfy NCAA transfer rules, then caught just one pass for 19 yards for the Cornhuskers this past season. That lone reception came in the 42-point, season-ending loss to Iowa that served as the final nail in Riley’s coaching coffin in Lincoln.