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August 17, 2014

Curry becomes baseball team's first 2016 commit

There aren't many 6-foot-3, 215-pound high school juniors walking around. There are even fewer that are left-handed and throw in the mid-to-upper 80s.

That's part of why Lincoln Southeast product Connor Curry caught the eye of Nebraska's coaches, and after watching him more closely at a camp last week they decided to offer him. Curry has since committed, becoming the first member of Nebraska's 2016 class.

"They're getting a young man that's got great potential," Southeast coach Doug Miller said. "He's a very strong young man. He's just a kid right now, and he's really going to grow into himself. He works very hard in the weight room."

Curry's fastball is impressive, but it's his changeup that Miller said really sets him apart from his peers. It's fairly uncommon for a pitcher with two seasons of high school ball left to control such a weapon.

"Usually it takes pitchers a little while to develop a changeup that they can control," Miller said. "Connor has the ability and the confidence to throw that pitch, even when down in the count, and that's a big deal. It keeps hitters off stride."

Curry built a good rapport with pitching coach Ted Silva over the last couple of years. The Huskers didn't offer Curry simply because of his size, but it helped him to stand out and Miller said enhances his abilities.

"I've had two or three fairly good varsity left-handed pitchers, but no one has that kind of size and potential strength that young man can develop," Miller said. "I think that was pretty key in why coach (Darin) Erstad wanted him to play at Nebraska.

"Being tall gives you increased leverage throwing the ball and gives increased velocity. And size can be a little intimidating on the mound when you're only 60 feet away."

Curry is still two years away from attending Nebraska and he's got some developing to do. Miller said that Curry is a quiet, humble player that he'd like to see grow more of a nasty attitude this year.

"He's a young pitcher and he needs to develop that "wrinkle-in-the-nose" attitude that says, 'I'm out here on the mound. This is my ballgame,'" Miller said. "'This is my plate. I'm not giving in to hitters. I'm in charge and I'm running the show.' He will develop that mental toughness or that tenacity on the mound that he's just not going to be denied."


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