Nebraska Cornhuskers’ Top 10 Returning Players in 2024 Include Isaiah Neyor, Jahmal Banks

    Matt Rhule and the Nebraska Cornhuskers know their top 10 returning players can help deliver a successful 2024 college football campaign.

    The Nebraska Cornhuskers had a positive first season under Matt Rhule, despite finishing 5-7. With promising talent emerging and exciting playmakers plucked from the transfer portal, the 2024 season looks bright in Lincoln.

    PFN Mock Draft Simulator - Desktop

    Nebraska Cornhuskers’ Top 10 Returners in 2024

    Analyzing the returning players at every school is a difficult task in the transfer portal area. As such, we’ve included transfer-portal athletes on each team’s roster page to open spring camp in addition to the rostered players from last year.

    10) Bryce Benhart, OT

    Protecting freshman quarterback Dylan Raiola, who is projected to start in 2024, will be paramount. The offensive line took a step forward in 2023 but will need to improve again in the fall. With Donovan Raiola coaching the group, the Cornhuskers return some pivotal figures on the offensive line, including Bryce Benhart, who will go down as a Nebraska legend.

    Benhart was an All-Big Ten Honorable mention in 2023 and has carved out a distinguished career in Lincoln. He started 12 games at right tackle last fall and has started every game since 2020. With 41 career starts, Benhart is tied for the most starts by an offensive lineman in program history with Jeremiah Sirles, and he will hold sole possession of the record in the 2024 season.

    9) Cameron Lenhardt, DL

    After becoming the first true freshman defensive lineman to start a season opener at Nebraska, Cameron Lenhardt enters his sophomore season in 2024 full of promise. Expected to take a more expansive role in the new season, Lenhardt could develop into one of the best pass rushers on the roster.

    His outstanding freshman season earned Lenhardt a CFN Freshman All-American Honorable Mention. He played in 10 games with four starts despite missing two through injury, and he recorded 16 tackles, five for a loss, and three sacks. Expect the sophomore defensive lineman’s production to increase in the fall.

    8) Ty Robinson, DL

    Ty Robinson returns to Lincoln for his sixth season and will again be an essential fixture of the Cornhuskers’ defense. An All-Big Ten Honorable Mention a season ago, Robinson is a leader on and off the field in Lincoln and will help set the tone up front.

    In 2023, Robinson had a career-high 29 tackles with four for a loss, one sack, six pass breakups, one fumble recovery, and a team-leading 11 quarterback hurries. He was a focal point in Nebraska’s great rushing defense, which limited teams to 92.9 yards per game in 2023.

    7) Isaac Gifford, DB

    Isaac Gifford started all 12 games a year ago and starred in the Cornhuskers secondary. His outstanding technical ability was matched by his production, having a standout year in 2023. His 86 tackles were the most by a Cornhuskers defensive back since 2014. Meanwhile, his 6.5 tackles for a loss, eight pass breakups, and one interception were all career highs.

    In 2024, Gifford will star again in a Nebraska defense that was much better than it was credited for. Between a strong defensive line and impactful secondary, Gifford can shine in the fall and gain more national recognition.

    6) Jimari Butler, LB

    Jamari Butler was the Cornhuskers’ most explosive and productive pass rusher in 2023, leading the team in tackles for a loss and sacks on his way to earning an All-Big Ten honorable mention. With 43 tackles, 8.5 for a loss, and 5.5 sacks, his returning production is a huge boost to a defensive line group that will set the tone for Nebraska’s season.

    MORE: 2024 Nebraska Cornhuskers Football Roster

    Playing in 11 games but starting six a year ago, Butler will likely see the field more in 2024, and if he can carry on his development arch, he could be one of the Big Ten’s leading pass rushers.

    5) Nash Hutmacher, DT

    Nash Hutmacher embodies the tenacious Nebraska run defense and returns in 2024 for his fifth year. Starting all 12 games a season ago, the Cornhuskers’ nose tackle had 40 tackles, eight for a loss, 4.5 sacks, and two passes deflected. His 2023 sack total is the most by any returning player.

    The Nebraska defensive line is the strongest deployed in Lincoln in recent seasons. Hutmacher will be essential to it, and his physical identity is symbolized by his shirt number. The ferocious run stuffer wears the number 0 because he was voted one of Nebraksa’s toughest players.

    4) Tommi Hill, DB

    Tommi Hill played both ways in 2023. However, he really excelled as a defensive back. He headed to Lincoln full of potential and displayed the key to unlocking it a year ago. With a career-high 26 tackles, nine pass breakups, and four interceptions in 12 games but only seven starts on defense, Hill started to show the Cornhuskers crowd what he could become.

    Heading into 2024, Hill is expected to carry on his upward trajectory. After tying the Big Ten lead for the most passes defended (13) and finishing fourth in the conference in interceptions (four), Hill has momentum, and there is a clear path to him being one of the most productive defensive backs in the Big Ten again in 2024.

    3) Isaiah Neyor, WR

    Nebraska has plenty of returning talent in the receiver room in 2024, but they have also added star quality through the transfer portal. Isaiah Neyor transfers in from Texas after never getting his Longhorns career off the ground following an ACL injury in 2022.

    However, before Texas, Neyor was at Wyoming, where he had 44 receptions for 878 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2021. If Rhule can rekindle that form, Neyor can use his explosive movement and deep playmaking threat to be a reliable, consistent weapon in Lincoln.

    2) Jahmal Banks, WR

    Jahmal Banks is another exceptional receiver heading to Lincon for the 2024 season. His capture was a real coup for Nebraska, with Banks regarded as one of the top receivers to have entered the portal.

    At 6’4” and 205 pounds, Banks is a true outside threat who had incredible production at Wake Forest. In 2022 and 2023, Banks combined for 101 receptions, 1,289 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns. With Banks and Neyor, the Cornhuskers’ passing attack got much more explosive and productive for 2024.

    1) Dante Dowdell, RB

    Dante Dowdell could have the most significant impact on the Cornhuskers’ roster in 2024 following his move to Lincoln from Oregon via the transfer portal. While Dowdell only appeared in six games in his freshman season in Eugene, the high school pedigree is clear for all to see.

    KEEP READING: 2024 Big Ten Power Rankings

    Nebraska can’t have another season in which its rushing leader is its quarterback (Heinrick Harrberg, with 477 rushing yards), and Dowdell can be an immediate starter — and star — for the Cornhuskers.

    College Football Network has you covered with the latest news and analysis, rankings, transfer portal information, top 10 returning players, the 2024 college football season schedule, and much more!


    Please enter your comment!
    Please enter your name here

    College Football Transfer Portal Tracker

    Never miss a beat with the CFN-exclusive College Football Transfer Portal Tracker, listing the student-athletes entering and exiting the transfer portal.

    Related Articles