How Nebraska Can out-Recruit Michigan for 4-Star TE Daniel Helm

Andrew KulhaSenior Analyst IIIMarch 6, 2013

Via 247Sports
Via 247Sports

Tight end Daniel Helm out of Chatham, Illinois is a Michigan lean, but there is another Big Ten team out there that could shake things up.


Helm has good size at 6'5'', 220 pounds. The 4-star tight end is ranked No. 16 at his position in the nation, according to the 247Sports Composite Rankings. He's a great receiving tight end who projects to be a very valuable option at the college level.

His height allows him to go up and high-point the ball and he can provide mismatches—especially in the end zone. He also has good speed and should be able to stretch the defense vertically between the seams.

According to Mike Matya of, Helm has said Michigan is his current leader:

"What I usually tell people is that I haven't been able to visit a whole lot of places yet so this may change, but currently my leader is Michigan," the four-star Helm replied.

"Michigan is a great school with a great football tradition, and I really like what they're going to do with their tight ends in the future. I like Coach (Dan) Ferrigno a lot and I definitely think that they're going to utilize me the way I would like to be used. Plus, it's not too far from home, so all of that stuff is pretty good."

With that being said, Helm has heard from Nebraska and wants to visit, according to Matya. Here's what he had to say about the Cornhuskers:

The Husker staff came through with an offer for Helm last week. 

"I was actually in Michigan on a visit and I got a message on facebook asking me to call them," Helm recounted. "I finally got ahold of Coach (Barney) Cotton and he let me know that I had the offer.

"He said that they'd use me more as a hybrid [tight end]. He liked how I can catch the ball and he said that he thought with their weight room and stuff that they could make me a pretty decent blocker as well."

Helm was asked what he knows about Nebraska at this point, and he replied:

"Not a whole lot. I know that their football tradition is excellent, it's a great college town, and then I've heard that their facilities are pretty phenomenal. But besides that, I don't know a whole lot."

Michigan is firmly in the lead for Helm (check out his 247Sports interest list). However, if there's a program that may be able to rival the Wolverines on the recruiting trail for the talented tight end, it's Nebraska.

As Helm pointed out, the football tradition at Nebraska is top notch, and the environment is incredible. Nebraska football is a lifestyle for fans, and the Cornhuskers can go toe-to-toe with Michigan in regards to prestige and national relevance.

The Cornhuskers have also put together a very impressive few years in the Big Ten and should continue to be one of the conference's best teams. Throw in a top notch workout facility and there's not much to dislike about Nebraska football.

Another factor to consider is the depth chart. Michigan is more than set at tight end and will be for a while. 

Devin Funchess is going to be a star at the tight end position for the Wolverines, and he'll be backed up by a very formidable A.J. Williams. Michigan also signed three 2013 tight ends, highlighted by 4-star tight end Jake Butt.

Nebraska, on the other hand, is heading into 2013 with a senior tight end in Jake Long and only signed two 3-star tight ends for 2013 in Greg Hart and Cethan Carter. Helm is talented enough to compete with Hart and Carter for the starting job as a freshman in 2014. In fact, if he does get into the weight room and put on some more mass, he has star potential in the Cornhuskers offense.

Michigan is still a huge draw on the recruiting trail and that's undeniable, but if Nebraska can get a visit, the Cornhuskers have a great pitch and could drastically shake up Helm's interest list.