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Matt Rhule on how Nebraska retained players in transfer window: 'Open, honest, transparent feedback'

IMG_0985by:Griffin McVeigh05/14/24


For a program still working the roster under second-year head coach Matt Rhule, there have not been too many exits in the NCAA transfer portal. Especially in the spring window, where Nebraska has been able to retain key players. A testament to how Rhule has the Huskers operating at the moment.

Rhule left college football before the transfer portal became such a key piece to rosters but after a stint in the NFL, he took the Nebraska job. His process heading into the offseason or summer has stayed the same, though. Being as honest with players as possible is how Rhule has had success in Lincoln when it comes to keeping critical players.

“I meet with every player after the spring game,” Rhule said. “Just talk about their strengths and weaknesses, something we’ve always done before the portal was even there. I think all of our players deserve open, honest, transparent feedback.

“They deserve to give feedback to us, say their perspective. We hope that most people want to be here. We take the ones that do want to be here and we double down, we get back to work.

Even with the portal being something almost everybody has to use, Rhule wants to go to battle with the guys he’s recruited from the high school ranks. Recruiting is still the foundation of any team attempting to grow and maintain a culture.

If Rhule provides feedback to his players and they accept what the plan at Nebraska is, he is willing to rock with them.

But not using the portal at all does not work too often. Finding impact players to elevate your roster when the time is right allows Rhule to be selective about who Nebraska takes.

“If we can add a guy or two this time of year that can help us, then great,” Rhule said. “But most of our roster is set, most of our team is set. We did that in the winter, we did that in the spring. We’re just trying to make good decisions in terms of doing anything right now.”

Nebraska has seven imports ahead of the 2024 season and the majority are thought to be potential starters. Rhule went into spring practice with a lot of his roster set and will show up at fall camp with a lot of the same guys. A refreshing sight in today’s modern college football world.