Malcolm Hartzog packed a lot into the final week of his recruitment.
On Nov. 29, he picked up a scholarship offer from Nebraska.
The next day, Husker defensive coordinator Erik Chinander came to see him for an in-home visit in Bassfield, Mississippi.
On Friday, the Class 3A Mr. Football in Mississippi helped lead his team to a state championship, then got on a plane to take a weekend official visit to Lincoln.
Then, upon returning home, Hartzog verbally committed to Nebraska on Monday.
The 5-foot-10, 180-pounder isn't the biggest and doesn't have the type of long frame that NU typically puts a premium on when recruiting defensive players, but Chinander and company liked what they saw from his senior film enough to rearrange travel plans and make him a priority down the stretch.
Most of the highlights Hartzog has on Hudl feature his work as a running back and receiver for Jefferson Davis County, and he rushed for 130 yards and a pair of touchdowns Friday in the title game, but he projects likely as a defensive back for the Huskers. He also had an interception in the championship game.
Hartzog is the second defensive back in Nebraska's 2022 class, joining Millard South's Gage Stenger, who is likely to at least begin his collegiate career at safety. Hartzog profiles as a cornerback.
NU may not be done at that position, either. Four-star prospect Jaeden Gould (Oradell, New Jersey) was also on an official visit over the weekend. The Huskers have also been in the market for transfer help in the secondary and had FCS Abilene Christian transfer Ryan Stapp on campus over the weekend. They've made several other transfer and junior college offers to defensive backs.
Hartzog is the second verbal pledge to what is now an 11-man high school class for Nebraska in 2022. He follows a commitment from three-star defensive lineman Brodie Tagaloa (San Francisco) on Sunday afternoon.
The turning point in every Nebraska football game in 2021
𝙏𝙝𝙚 𝙙𝙤𝙪𝙗𝙡𝙚 𝙥𝙚𝙧𝙨𝙤𝙣𝙖𝙡 𝙛𝙤𝙪𝙡
Aug. 28 | Illinois 30, Nebraska 22
Parker Gabriel's turning point: This one is clear as day. The double personal foul on Caleb Tannor that turned a Cam Taylor-Britt interception into 30 yards and a first down in the red zone for Illinois breathed new life into the Illini. They reeled off 28 straight points from there — 14 to close the first half and the first two scores of the third quarter — and took control of the game.
𝙏𝙪𝙧𝙣𝙚𝙙 𝙖𝙬𝙖𝙮 𝙗𝙮 𝘿𝙞𝙨𝙢𝙪𝙠𝙚
Sept. 4 | Nebraska 52, Fordham 7
Turning point: Fordham had a chance to tie the game at 10 early in the second quarter, but senior safety Marquel Dismuke blocked a field goal and set Nebraska up with good field position. The defense and offense both had shaky moments early on, but Nebraska settled in nicely from there and asserted its dominance.
𝙈𝙖𝙧𝙩𝙞𝙣𝙚𝙯 𝙗𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙠𝙨 𝙛𝙧𝙚𝙚
Sept. 11 | Nebraska 28, Buffalo 3
Turning point: Nebraska had moved the ball but had not converted in the first quarter. On a third-down play deep in its own territory in the second, junior quarterback Adrian Martinez shrugged off a free blitzer and raced 71 yards to set up NU’s first score. It wasn’t always pretty for the offense from there, but it provided the Huskers a jolt and the home team never trailed against the Bulls.
𝘾𝙪𝙡𝙥'𝙨 𝙢𝙞𝙨𝙨 𝙛𝙡𝙞𝙥𝙨 𝙜𝙖𝙢𝙚
Sept. 18 | Oklahoma 23, Nebraska 16
Turning point: Nebraska got the ball to start the second half and drove it right down the field, threatening to turn a 7-3 deficit into its first lead of the day. Instead, the Huskers stalled out and senior kicker Connor Culp missed a 35-yard field goal. Ten plays and 58 yards for naught. Then, Oklahoma went 80 in 10 plays the other way. Instead of maybe being 10-7 NU or at least 7-6, the Sooners extended their lead to 14-3.
𝙊𝙣𝙚 𝙙𝙞𝙨𝙖𝙨𝙩𝙧𝙤𝙪𝙨 𝙥𝙪𝙣𝙩
Sept. 25 | Michigan State 23, Nebraska 20, OT Turning point: Easy. Jayden Reed hauled in a wayward Daniel Cerni punt with nobody around him late in the fourth quarter and he raced 62 yards for a game-tying touchdown with 3:47 to go.
Nebraska dominated the second half defensively and offensively. Both sides will say they could have done more — the defense wanted a takeaway, even though 14 yards on 15 snaps is more than good enough, and the offense wanted to avoid going three-and-out before the punt — but simply put, that play changed the outcome of the game.
𝘿𝙤𝙢𝙖𝙣𝙣, 𝙏𝙝𝙤𝙢𝙖𝙨 𝙘𝙤𝙢𝙗𝙞𝙣𝙚 𝙛𝙤𝙧 𝙩𝙪𝙧𝙣𝙤𝙫𝙚𝙧
Oct. 2 | Nebraska 56, Northwestern 7
Turning point: A shoutout to the defense. The Blackshirts had given up a touchdown drive and Northwestern had the ball at the 1-yard line with a chance to get within 28-14 in the second quarter when JoJo Domann and Deontre Thomas ripped through the line and hit Evan Hull. Domann forced a fumble and Thomas recovered it. Northwestern didn’t sniff the end zone the rest of the night.
𝙈𝙖𝙧𝙩𝙞𝙣𝙚𝙯'𝙨 𝙡𝙖𝙩𝙚 𝙛𝙪𝙢𝙗𝙡𝙚 𝙨𝙥𝙤𝙞𝙡𝙨 𝙪𝙥𝙨𝙚𝙩 𝙗𝙞𝙙
Oct. 9 | Michigan 32, Nebraska 29
Turning point: Martinez's fumble with 1 minute, 45 seconds remaining put the Wolverines in position to take the lead in the waning moments. The Huskers had the ball with three minutes left in a tie game and a chance to win, but the fumble set Michigan up in field-goal range. Jake Moody calmly put a 39-yard field goal through the uprights 21 seconds later on the game clock.
𝘼𝙣 𝙪𝙣𝙩𝙞𝙢𝙚𝙡𝙮 𝙨𝙩𝙪𝙢𝙗𝙡𝙚
Oct. 16 | Minnesota 30, Nebraska 23
Turning point: On third-and-goal, junior quarterback Adrian Martinez was ruled down inches short of the goal line. The initial ruling withstood review. Then, freshman running back Jaquez Yant took a fourth-and-inches handoff, tripped on his own and barrel-rolled down short of the goal line. There would have been a collision had he kept his feet, but you would have liked the 232-pounder’s chances with a head of steam.
𝙅𝙪𝙨𝙩 𝙖 𝙗𝙞𝙩 𝙤𝙪𝙩 𝙤𝙛 𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙘𝙝
Oct. 30 | Purdue 28, Nebraska 23
Turning point: Nebraska caught a break late in the second half and not only kicked a field goal to go up 17-14 with 1:20 to go, but then got the ball back in great field position with 20 seconds on the clock. Coach Scott Frost and offensive coordinator Matt Lubick dialed up a great play call and Samori Toure ran free on a deep post, but Adrian Martinez’s pass grazed off of Toure’s fingertips. It would have been a walk-in touchdown and a 24-14 halftime lead. Instead, NU led by three and then opened the half with four punts and three interceptions on its first seven possessions.
𝙁𝙧𝙤𝙨𝙩'𝙨 𝙛𝙞𝙚𝙡𝙙 𝙜𝙤𝙖𝙡 𝙜𝙖𝙢𝙗𝙡𝙚 𝙙𝙤𝙚𝙨𝙣'𝙩 𝙥𝙖𝙮
Nov. 6 | Ohio State 26, Nebraska 17
Turning point: Nebraska head coach Scott Frost decided to attempt a field goal rather than go for it on fourth-and-4 from the OSU 13 with just under 10 minutes left in the regulation. The Huskers trailed by six at that moment, but instead of halving the lead to three, Chase Contreraz missed and the Buckeyes took over. The Huskers had marched 73 yards in 11 plays with eyes on taking the lead. Instead, OSU took over and went to work on the clock and on field position. NU got it back at the same score, but with 90 yards to go. The Huskers couldn’t mount another scoring threat.
𝘿𝙞𝙙𝙣'𝙩 𝙩𝙖𝙠𝙚 𝙡𝙤𝙣𝙜 ...
Nov. 20 | Wisconsin 35, Nebraska 28
Turning point: There wasn’t really a turning point. The game was within one score for the full 60 minutes. If anything, UW’s game-opening, 91-yard kick return touchdown was the big blow that put Nebraska behind from the start. Nebraska never led but evened the game four times. Wisconsin scored first (the return) and last (a 53-yard Braelon Allen touchdown), and that was the difference.
𝙎𝙥𝙚𝙘𝙞𝙖𝙡 𝙩𝙚𝙖𝙢𝙨 𝙨𝙩𝙧𝙞𝙠𝙚𝙨 𝙤𝙣𝙚 𝙡𝙖𝙨𝙩 𝙩𝙞𝙢𝙚
Nov. 26 | Iowa 28, Nebraska 21
Turning point: Very few have been as obvious as this one this year. Leading by 12 points in the first minute of the fourth quarter, Nebraska had a punt blocked and returned for a touchdown. It’s just the kind of backbreaking error the Huskers have made at critical junctures in close games this year and just the kind of play Iowa makes regularly. The Huskers still led 21-16, but Frost said, “That was the game.”
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