Nebraska soccer, Matt Rhule lands Texas 2023 tight end

It appeared like a surefire, no-doubter that Texas 2023 tight end Ismael Smith Flores would wind up at Iowa. Instead, the Hawkeyes legacy goes to be a Husker. Smith Flores began dedicated to Nebraska.

The 6-foot-6, 210-pounder out of Arlington Martin High School is listed as a receiver on his recruiting profile, however he was recruited as a tight end by Nebraska TE coach Bob Wager and head coach Matt Rhule.

Smith Flores was coached by Wager at Arlington Martin, the place Wager was the top coach for 17 seasons from 2006-22. That relationship helped gasoline the Huskers’ recruitment of Smith Flores, who took an official go to to Lincoln over Jan. 21-22 weekend.

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That go to served because the backdrop for Smith Flores to quickly choose the Huskers, who’ve pulled off a shocking win over their rivals to the East.

Smith Flores’ mother and father, Leroy Smith and Laura Flores, each graduated from Iowa. Smith was a Hawkeyes soccer star who was inducted into the Iowa Athletics Hall of Fame in 2019. Smith nonetheless holds the Big Ten single-season sacks report (18) for his historic 1991 season and have become an All-American defensive end.

Smith Flores’ godfather, Danan Hughes, was a teammate of Smith Flores’ father in Iowa City. Hughes was a star receiver who remains to be third on Iowa’s all-time receiving record (146 catches with 2,216 receiving yards), and his 21 receiving touchdowns is tied for second on this system’s all-time record.

So, the household connections are as robust as they may get. Iowa was additionally the primary program to supply Smith Flores, coming into the combination in October. He wound up amassing 10 whole affords – together with Nebraska, Michigan State, Rutgers, Indiana and Vanderbilt.

The Hawkeyes have been the primary provide. The Huskers have been one of many final, doing so on Jan. 11, about 10 days earlier than he scheduled his official go to to Nebraska.

And but, Wager, Rhule and Co. have been nonetheless in a position to pull out a recruiting win over Iowa and that host of colleges – most notably Rutgers, the place Smith Flores’ cousin, Deion Jennings, is a linebacker and the place he took an official go to over the Jan. 14-15 weekends.

How Smith Flores dedication impacts Nebraska

Smith Flores’ dedication is one other knowledge level that Wager is already making his presence felt in Lincoln because the Huskers restock the tight end place.

Nebraska already landed former LSU and Georgia TE switch Arik Gilbert – a former five-star who was the No. 1-ranked tight end and No. 9-ranked total participant within the 2020 class – who’s booming with potential and may very well be a serious contributor for Nebraska if he settles some issues he’s coping with off the sphere.

Wager can be making waves in Texas, the place he was a head coach for greater than 20 years and completed with a 206-100-1 total report throughout 4 completely different packages. Smith Flores is the most recent model of Wager’s affect.

Ian Flynt may very well be the subsequent.

The four-star Flynt is the No. 10-ranked tight end within the 2024 class out of James E. Taylor (Texas) High School in Katy. The Huskers are surging for momentum with him, too, as he is coming off an official go to to Lincoln in mid-January. They are battling with Kansas and now Purdue, which provided Flynt on Jan. 16

Flynt’s father was on Nebraska’s observe and discipline crew within the 90s, and Flynt’s sister is presently within the Huskers’ observe and discipline program. So the Huskers will probably be trying to do what Iowa couldn’t with Smith-Flores – shut on the recruitment of a legacy participant.

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