Flanagan linebacker Adrienne Talan is not one to draw attention to himself.
His decision on where he wanted to play football in college didn’t come down to the wire because he wanted to make a big National Signing Day announcement. He legitimately struggled with it until the waning moments — as in “10 to 15 minutes” before it was time to hit the stage.
When it was finally time, Talan announced at Flanagan’s auditorium Wednesday afternoon that he would sign with Nebraska over Pittsburgh, TCU and Temple.
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“The thing I love about Nebraska is the tradition they have and the facilities — everything I need will be right there for me,” said Talan, who had 83 tackles and 13 sacks in his senior season. “My coach that I’ve built a relationship with [linebackers coach Trent Bray, who went from Oregon State to Nebraska this offseason]. He told me just to stay with him through the process and he got the job at Nebraska, and I went.
“I’m not a big-city type of guy. Nebraska is a small college town. Everybody just loves football over there.”
Talan’s wardrobe suggested he was going with the Cornhuskers, wearing a black shirt with a red tie, but he said he wore it because it was his only tie.
Nebraska is getting a 6-2, 205-pound playmaker who can help a defense in a variety of ways.
“He’s so scheme-versatile. This kid can rush off the edge, he can play physical in the box, he can run down the field with any receiver,” Flanagan coach Devin Bush said. “He hits hard. He’s very physical and very explosive.”
Pittsburgh made a late push with coach Pat Narduzzi putting the full-court press on Talan, but it wasn’t enough to convince him in the end.
Ten football players in all from Flanagan — a state semifinalist and district and regional champion in Class 8A for the first time in its history — signed with a college program Wednesday.
Talented and speedy 6-2 receiver Emonee Spence signed with Louisville, where he committed on his official visit Jan. 24 to join a receiving corps that lost five receivers.
Spence saw the opportunity for immediate playing time, and wide receivers coach and former Miami Hurricanes standout Lamar Thomas played a major role in getting Spence on board with the Cardinals.
“Coach Lamar, he’s got a big history,” Spence said. “That gave me an extra boost and extra confidence that I could trust him.”
Spence, who finished his senior season with 60 receptions for 900 yards and 12 touchdowns, was a long-time Hurricanes commit before decommitting in December in a separation that was agreed upon mutually between he and UM.
Spence’s quarterback, Ryan Stanley, grew up a Florida State Seminoles fan. He won’t be slinging it for his dream school, but he will be in the same city. Stanley signed with Florida A&M on Wednesday.
“He got as close to it as possible,” Bush said.
Said Stanley, a first-team Miami Herald All-Broward selection and one of the most prolific passers in the county the past three seasons: “I feel it’s the best opportunity for me football- and academic-wise. The new coaching staff coming in, I think they have a really good head on their shoulders, and they’re trying to do something serious.”
Eastern Michigan made a late push for Stanley, offering him a scholarship Monday. Stanley thought it was too little, too late after telling the coaches there he would have committed on the spot if he were to have received an offer on his visit two weeks ago.
Also staying in Florida is offensive lineman Cameron Campbell, who will be heading to Tampa to play at USF.
Wide receiver Keavon Mitchell, after a breakout season as Broward County’s second-leading receiver, signed with Bethune-Cookman. Arkeem Granger pledged to Tennessee State, and Robert Foy is Florida Tech-bound. Walter Jackson, Kevin Lambert and Darnell Brown will all remain teammates at Lindenwood University in St. Louis.