RECRUITING: Starling Commits to Nebraska

By at June 19, 2010 | 10:15 PM | Print

Here comes the phenom.

Nebraska landed its highest-profile verbal commit for the 2011 recruiting class – and he’s destined to stay that way – when Gardner, Kan., quarterback Bubba Starling Saturday selected NU over Alabama and Notre Dame, among others.

At 6-foot-5, 190 pounds, Starling is uniformly considered among the 100 best players in high school football. His size, athleticism, running ability and name – especially that name – will draw inevitable comparisons to former Florida quarterback Tim Tebow. So will his playing style. During his junior season, Starling rushed for 1,381 yards and 19 touchdowns and threw for 1,433 yards and 18 touchdowns while leading the Blazers to the Kansas 5-A state championship game.

A three-sport star at Gardner Edgerton, Starling also plans to the pitch for the Nebraska baseball team. Starling is good enough to attract attention from Major League Baseball in the 2011 first-year player draft.

He told recruiting sites Saturday “it would take a lot of money” for him to forgo college; Starling even went so far to tell Huskers Illustrated that he didn’t want to become the next Carl Crawford, a Houston-area quarterback who spurned Nebraska and Frank Solich in 1999 to pursue an all-star baseball career with the Tampa Bay Rays.

Starling narrowed his school choices down to ND and NU, visiting South Bend two weeks ago and Lincoln this weekend. The difference? The coaches – specifically Nebraska baseball skipper Mike Anderson and Husker offensive coordinator Shawn Watson. Starling doesn’t plan on wavering, having taken his unofficial visits this summer.

The question for the next year, even beyond Signing Day 2011: Can Starling turn down the MLB?

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