Honors & Awards
In his only year as a full-time starter in 1998, Rucker posted a career-high 53 tackles, including 21 solos, while notching nine tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks. He also caused three fumbles and three more interceptions. He ended the year with 11 quarterback hurries and one pass breakup.
In Nebraska's 16-14 win over Colorado, Rucker forced a pair of fumbles to help preserve the Husker victory while earning Big 12 Defensive Player-of-the-Week honors. He was also named the ABC/Chevrolet Player of the Game for his effort against the Buffaloes.
He posted career highs of 11 tackles against both Oklahoma State and Texas as a senior. He also stuffed OSU's Nathan Simmons on the game's final play to preserve NU's 20-13 win over the Cowboys on Oct. 3.
In the 1998 Holiday Bowl against Arizona, Rucker notched seven solo tackles, including five tackles for loss (17 yards) with one nine-yard sack.
He continued his career after being drafted in the second round with the 38th overall pick by the Carolina Panthers in the 1999 NFL Draft.
Rucker added four pass breakups, one forced fumble (vs. Oklahoma) and ranked third among the Blackshirts with 15 quarterback hurries.
Rucker posted a season-high six tackles, including three tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks against Missouri. He combined with Grant Wistrom on a big sack to end the game in Nebraska's overtime win over the Tigers.
In the Orange Bowl win over Tennessee, Rucker recorded three solo tackles, including the game's only sack. He also recovered a fumble that led to Nebraska's first score on the way to the Huskers' third national championship in four seasons.
Rucker caused and recovered one fumble against Missouri, recording a two-yard gain to the MU 8-yard line, leading to a Husker touchdown three plays later. Rucker also posted eight quarterback hurries on the year, causing one interception (vs. Missouri).
He produced season-bests with five tackles on three occassions, including a win over Texas Tech, when he had a career-best four sacks for 24 yards lost (the top effort by any Husker in 1996). He also notched one quarterback hurry against the Red Raiders.
Rucker recorded four tackles for loss against Michigan State (21 yards), before adding two tackles in the 1996 Orange Bowl victory over Virginia Tech, including a sack and a fumble caused. Rucker hit Virginia Tech's Jim Druckenmiller for a two-yard loss and a sack while knocking the ball loose. Fellow Blackshirt Jason Peter scooped up the fumble and rumbled 31 yards for a touchdown to give NU a 17-7 lead in the second quarter.
1995 (Redshirt Freshman)
Rucker recorded a season-high five tackles in the opener against Oklahoma State. He added three tackles against Kansas, then did not see action in the last two games of the year. He had one tackle in the 1996 Fiesta Bowl, a seven-yard sack of Danny Wuerffel, helping Nebraska to a 52-24 victory over Florida in the national championship game.
Before Nebraska (Benton High School)
Rucker placed fourth in the state in the shot put as a junior and was the state champion in 1994, with a throw of 54-2. He went unbeaten in 10 meets during his senior season. Rucker lettered 10 times in high school, including three each in football and basketball and four in track.
Rucker's Career Statistics
Fumble Returns: 1-2 yards in 1996 vs. Missouri