Avery Moss Return in 2015 Still On the Table
The sentiments of Avery Moss, the talented young defensive end for Nebraska who was banned through December for public indecency, still seem to be favoring a return to the school. Within a week of the ban that was his stance, but now more than 3 months later that appears to remain his inclination according to AP reporter Eric Olson. That would be very good news for 2015 and beyond.
Moss shared an end position with Randy Gregory, starting three games and finishing as the top reserve at the position. With Jason Ankrah graduating, he'd have been in line to start opposite Gregory in 2014. Now Greg McMullen appears to be in line for a starting end spot. Defensive tackle Maliek Collins has been getting long looks to help provide depth at end. At 6'2" and 300 lbs., Collins certainly seems built for the tackle spot though. Newcomer Joe Keels will likely be a two-deep player. There a number of freshman that may have been called on early as well including 2014 redshirt A.J. Natter and true freshmen Peyton Newell, Deandre Wills, or Mick Stoltenberg.
The advantage Moss has at this point is experience and production along with a knack for making big plays at critical times. Moss was second on the team in sacks and quarterback hurries in 2014 ahead of even regular starter Ankrah. His interception return for a touchdown against Northwestern was critical to the outcome. His fourth-down sack ended a drive into Nebraska territory in the close win over Michigan. He broke up a third down pass against Penn State while Nebraska was holding onto a 1-point lead. He stymied an early drive as NU clung to a 17-14 lead versus Wyoming and helped stall the Cowboys on the game's final drive. He was a difference maker in a number of close games.
Since Moss hasn't been enrolled in school, he presumably will retain his three remaining years of eligibility. That will certainly help the defensive line, particularly if Gregory were to leave early for the NFL after the 2014 season. A lot can happen between now and January, but it's good to hear that Moss still hopes to return to the Huskers. Both Moss and the team would surely benefit.