Honors & Awards
» 2014 Honorable-Mention All-Big Ten (Media, Coaches)
» Academic All-Big Ten (2012, 2013, 2014)
» Team Captain (2014)
» Cletus Fischer Native Son Award Winner (2014)
» Brook Berringer Citizenship Team (2014)
» Tom Osborne Citizenship Team (2014)
» Three-Time Nebraska Scholar-Athlete Honor Roll
Offensive guard Jake Cotton completed his Nebraska career with a standout 2014 season. A second generation Husker, Cotton had great success on and off the field during his time in the football program.
One of five senior captains in 2014, Cotton started all 13 games at left guard, teaming with tackle Alex Lewis to form a strong left side of the line. The Nebraska offensive line helped the Huskers ran in the top 20 nationally in both rushing offense and scoring offense, while senior running back Ameer Abdullah became Nebraska’s all-time leader in all-purpose yards while ranking second in career rushing yards. The line also helped Nebraska rank among the top offenses in protecting the passer in 2014.
Cotton was an honorable-mention all-conference pick by the media and coaches for his performance this season.
Cotton played in 32 games in his Nebraska career, while starting 24 of 26 games in his final two years. Cotton played his senior season as a graduate after earning his degree in history in August of 2014. A Lincoln native, Cotton earned Academic All-Big Ten honors for three consecutive seasons.
Cotton was a key part of an offensive line that powered several record-setting performances. The Nebraska offense opened the season with a Big Ten modern-era record of 784 yards of total offense, including 498 rushing yards. The line pounded the defenses of both Miami and Illinois as the Huskers rushed for 343 and 458 yards, respectively, and Ameer Abdullah topped 200 yards in both contests.
The line paved the way for Abdullah’s fourth 200-yard rushing game of the season against Rutgers.
Cotton started 11 of 13 games at left guard, while missing the Michigan and Michigan State contests with a knee injury. His play helped Nebraska average better than 215 rushing yards and more than 410 yards of total offense per game. With the offensive line providing the push, junior I-back Ameer Abdullah rushed for 1,690 yards and had 11 100-yard rushing games. As a team, Nebraska topped 250 rushing yards five times in 2013.
Cotton played in five games as a sophomore, serving as a reserve guard behind All-Big Ten pick Spencer Long and Seung Hoon Choi. Cotton saw his most extensive action of the year against Georgia in the Capital One Bowl.
2011 (Redshirt Freshman)
Cotton played in wins over Chattanooga, Washington and Wyoming, helping the Huskers rack up more than 300 rushing yards against both Washington and Wyoming. He suffered a knee injury before the Ohio State game and was lost for the season. Cotton moved from defense to the offensive line during spring practice.
Cotton redshirted in his first season and worked on the defensive line.
Before Nebraska (Southeast HS)
Cotton excelled on both lines at Southeast for Coach John Larsen. As a senior, Cotton helped the Knights to a 9-2 record and a trip to the state quarterfinals. Cotton provided a physical presence at offensive tackle, while on defense he made 58 tackles, including 12 sacks, and added a pair of fumble recoveries. Cotton’s play earned him first-team All-Nebraska honors from the Omaha World-Herald and first-team Super-State honors from the Lincoln Journal Star. Both papers selected him to their all-state teams as an offensive lineman. Cotton was the first scholarship signee for Nebraska from Lincoln Southeast since 2003.
Cotton gained more than 40 pounds between his junior and senior season. As a junior, he played tight end and defensive end for the Knights. Cotton was ranked among the top 50 players in the Midlands Region by Super Prep Magazine.
Jake is the son of Barney and Christine Cotton and was born on July 11, 1991. Cotton is a history major and has earned a spot on the Nebraska Scholar-Athlete Honor Roll three times. He was also an Academic All-Big Ten honoree in 2012 and 2013. He has volunteered his time with Husker Heroes, School is Cool Week, Fuel Up to Play 60, Uplifting Athletes, Madonna Rehabilitation Center and team hospital and school visits. Cotton earned a spot on both the Brook Berringer and Tom Osborne Citizenship Teams in 2014 for his community outreach efforts.
His father earned three letters for the Huskers from 1975 to 1978, as both an offensive and defensive lineman. His older brother, Ben, was a four-year letterwinner at tight end for Nebraska from 2009 to 2012.
Cotton's Career Statistics
» Games Played - 32 (3 in 2011, 5 in 2012, 11 in 2013; 13 in 2014)
» Games Started - 24 (11 in 2013; 13 in 2014)