Expect more Cottons in the lineup this fall

Despite the graduation of Nebraska tight end Ben Cotton, the Huskers will likely have two Cottons in the lineup this fall.

LINCOLN, Neb. - Despite the graduation of Nebraska tight end Ben Cotton, the Huskers will likely have two Cottons in the lineup this fall.

Jake, a junior left guard, is currently running with the first-team unit opposite of All-American guard Spencer Long. The 6-foot-6, 305-pound product played in five games last year, seeing a lot of time against Georgia in the Capital One Bowl.

"I really like the way he has practiced," said Nebraska offensive coordinator Tim Beck. "He's still got some things to work on, but he's quick and very physical for a big guy. He moves so well for a guy that big."

While Jake is likely to be a starter, his younger brother Sam is fighting for the opportunity to replace his brother Ben at tight end.

A redshirt freshman, Sam has likely had the best spring practices among the younger tight ends according to Beck.

"He's just a good football player. He plays really hard, has good hands, and runs well. He's got to get bigger and stronger still," said Beck. "I like where he's at right now in his career and where he will be.

"I think Sam might be faster than Ben at this point, but Ben was a little thicker and stronger. They both have good hands and run good routes. Sam probably just has a little more separation at this point."

It has been well documented Sam and Jake are the sons of Nebraska assistant coach Barney Cotton, who gets to coach Sam on a daily basis.

"Those guys are tough dudes, man," Beck said. "They play hard. They could have broken limbs and they're out there playing."

Josh Harvey has covered college football and recruiting for Fox Sports & Scout.com since 2008. He is now the Publisher of Big Red Report, covering Nebraska athletics.
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