Honors & Awards
In his second season as a starter in 2008, Potter not only played at a high level on the defensive front but he was also a team leader and was selected as one of four team captains. The 6-7, 280-pound Potter finished the year second on the team in tackles for loss (16) and sacks (5.5) and ranked near the top of the Big 12 charts in both of those categories among defensive linemen.
Overall, Potter made 47 tackles, had interceptions against San Jose State and Kansas and also broke up seven passes at the line of scrimmage, tying the Nebraska position record. Three of those passes were intercepted by another Blackshirt defender, including two interception returns for scores by nose tackle Ndamukong Suh. Potter continued to be a factor on special teams, blocking three opponent kicks to give him five career blocked kicks. The three blocked kicks tied a season record for defensive linemen. Potter’s five career blocked kicks is a position record.
Potter was honored for his work as he was an honorable-mention All-Big 12 selection. His play helped a Nebraska defense that reduced its yards per game allowed by more than 125 yards from the 2007 season and finished second in the Big 12 in total defense. Nebraska also recorded 35 sacks on the season, nearly tripling its total from the previous season. In the classroom, Potter earned second-team academic All-Big 12 honors, the third straight season he has been honored by the conference.
He added his second sack of the year against New Mexico State and also recorded a blocked field goal in the first quarter, setting the tone in NU’s 38-7 win. Potter made six tackles each against Virginia Tech and Missouri, including two tackles for loss in each game. At Texas Tech, Potter blocked a Red Raider extra-point in overtime for his second block of the season.
Potter had five games with five or more tackles, including a career-high six against both USC and Oklahoma State. Potter had five tackles, two tackles for loss and a sack in NU’s win at Wake Forest. Despite not starting because of an ankle injury, Potter closed non-league play with a strong showing against Ball State, finishing with four tackles, two tackles for loss, a sack, a fumble caused and a pair of hurries.
He had at least five tackles in a three-game stretch capped by a six-tackle effort against OSU when he also had a pass breakup. Potter added four tackles, a tackle for loss and his first career interception at Texas.
Before Nebraska (Creighton Prep HS)
Potter also had outstanding numbers as a junior, catching 14 passes for better than 300 yards, including four touchdowns. He made 61 tackles, with 10 sacks and 11 pass breakups. His performance earned Potter first-team all-state honors.
Potter also starred in basketball, averaging 19 points and 11 rebounds per game as a center, and led the Junior Jays to the Class A state title game as a senior. He was a first-team all-state selection by both of the state's major newspapers. His all-around athletic performance earned him co-Boys High School Athlete-of-the-Year honors from the Lincoln Journal Star. Potter won the Bert Render Award-winner as the state’s top male athlete from the B’Nai B’rith organization. Potter also considered Notre Dame and Kansas State before selecting Nebraska.