Position: Wide Receiver
Height/Weight: 6-foot-1/185 pound
High School: Fairview HS (CO)
Talk about a season that nobody saw coming – besides Kenny Bell. The redshirt freshman led the Huskers in receptions (32), receiving yard (461), and touchdown receptions (3), despite not being on too many expert's radar as a go to threat in 2011. Many wondered - Bell is fast, but can he be more than just a fly route receiver?
Bell credits his year to his work with the scout team in 2010 as a true freshman.
“My scout team year was unbelievable. I got a chance to play with phenomenal players (Prince Amukamara, Eric Hagg and Dejon Gomes),” said Bell towards the end of 2011. “Those guys taught me that it pays to practice hard. I appreciate those guys so much. It was so vital to show me how important practice really is.”
Bell's biggest play of the year wasn't actually a catch. It was a reverse against Minnesota, that allowed the Colorado native to use his speed on the outside. A total of 80 yards later and he was celebrating in the end zone.
Bell enters his sophomore year fresh off Honorable-Mention Freshman All-America honors by CollegeFootballNews in 2011, but he's a secret no longer. As the Huskers No. 1 wide receiver on the depth chart, expect defenses to hone in on the sophomore a little more to start the year.
Because of this, Bell's going to have to improve in aspects of the game as well – including drops.
“Obviously, way too many drops last year. Those things still eat at me to this day," Bell told the Lincoln Journal Star in the spring. "Ball security is definitely one thing, and then physicality. Presence on the perimeter.”
At just 185 pounds, it's tough for the wide receiver, but he continues to add weight to his frame through the Nebraska Strength and Conditioning program.
I think our DBs can tell,” Bell told the LJS. "I think they would say I've gotten bigger and stronger.
"We run option, so those are pretty key blocks, not only to get the guy blocked, but reading the defense and knowing where you're supposed to be and who you're supposed to block. It gets to be, mentally, pretty draining,”
How he ended up in Lincoln
Bell worked as a running back, wide receiver, returner, and defensive back in high school, earning first-team All-Colorado Class 5A his senior year, despite only playing in five games due to injury. He still managed to catch 18 balls for 328 yards and scored a total of five touchdowns, taking an interception and kick off return to the end zone.
The Huskers were his biggest suitor, with teams like Texas Tech, Arizona State, Colorado, and Colorado State also offering the former Fox Sports NEXT three-star prospect.
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