Honors & Awards » Tom Osborne Citizenship Team (2014) » Academic All-Big Ten (2013) » Nebraska Scholar-Athlete Honor Roll (Fall, 2012) » Big Ten Freshman of the Week (vs. Idaho State) » Brook Berringer Citizenship Team (2013) » Nebraska Student-Athlete HERO Leadership Award (2013)
2014 Outlook I-back Imani Cross continued to provide an excellent complement to All-Big Ten back Ameer Abdullah in 2013. Cross continued to show the ability to excel in short-yardage situations, while also showing his ability as a complete running back.
This season Cross will again battle to earn his share of carries in the Huskers’ powerful rushing offense. Cross, Abdullah and sophomore Terrell Newby all return for the 2014 season after combining to rush for more than 2,400 yards last fall.
The 6-1, 230-pound Cross finished as NU’s second-leading rusher in 2013, and led the team with 10 rushing touchdowns, including three games with two touchdowns. Through two seasons, Cross has 17 career rushing touchdowns on 140 carries, scoring a touchdown once every 8.2 attempts.
A leader in the classroom and community, Cross was one of 30 Huskers named to the Academic All-Big Ten team in 2013.
2013 (Sophomore) Cross finished second on the team with 447 rushing yards on 85 carries, an average of 5.3 yards per attempt. Cross had 10 or more carries four times during the season and rushed for at least 50 yards in five games, including a career-high 105 yards in the season opener against Wyoming.
Cross also reached the end zone twice against the Cowboys, including a one-yard touchdown and a 31-yard TD scamper in the third quarter. Cross scored his 10th career touchdown from a yard out against Southern Miss. Against South Dakota State, he posted his second two-TD game of the season and rushed for 60 yards on 10 carries.
Cross carried 15 times for 76 yards and a a touchdown against Illinois. He then carried a career-high 16 times for 56 yards and two touchdowns at Purdue, giving him three straight games with 50 or more rushing yards. Cross scored a touchdown on the game’s opening drive at Minnesota. Against Michigan State, Cross had a career-long 51-yard touchdown run in the third quarter. He added eight carries for 31 yards at Penn State.
2012 (Freshman) Cross played in all 14 games and was one of four I-backs to top 300 rushing yards and average better than 5.0 yards per carry. Cross finished with 55 carries for 324 yards, an average of 5.9 yards per carry, and his role grew in the second half of the season as Rex Burkhead sat out with a knee injury.
Cross was third on the team in rushing touchdowns with seven, including five touchdowns in Big Ten play. He had at least seven carries five times. Cross was impressive in his debut against Southern Miss, rushing 11 times for 62 yards. Against Arkansas State, Cross scored his first career touchdown on a two-yard run in the fourth quarter. He finished with 66 yards against the Red Wolves, including a season-long 44-yard run. Cross helped Nebraska roll up 385 rushing yards against Idaho State, by rushing for 100 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries.
With Burkhead sidelined for the majority of five straight games, Cross grew into the short-yardage back role. He helped Nebraska grind out the final seven minutes of the clock in the win over Michigan. Then against Penn State, Cross rushed for 22 yards and two touchdowns on eight carries. Both of his scores came in the third quarter, turning a 14-point halftime deficit into a tie game. He added a pair of touchdowns a week later against Minnesota and finished that game with 19 rushing yards. Cross rushed three times for 35 yards in the Big Ten title game, including a 26-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter.
Before Nebraska (North Hall HS) Cross was Nebraska’s first signee from Georgia since 2008. He piled up 1,698 rushing yards as a senior at North Hall High School, including 24 rushing touchdowns. He averaged nearly nine yards per carry, and also excelled on defense for Coach Robert Christmas, making 88 tackles as a linebacker. Cross’ play earned him second-team Class AAA all-state honors in Georgia.
As a junior, Cross rushed for 600 yards and nine touchdowns, despite being limited to five games because of an injury. As a sophomore, he helped Flowery Branch High School to a 10-4 record and a playoff berth by rushing for 1,417 yards and 17 touchdowns.
Cross also competed in track and field, earning a seventh-place medal in shot put his senior season. Cross was ranked among the top 35 running backs in the country and the top 50 overall prospects in Georgia by several recruiting outlets. Cross also visited Kentucky and East Carolina, and had numerous other offers including Tennessee, South Carolina and Georgia Tech.
Personal Cross was born on Sept. 23, 1993, and he is the son of Tim and Sharon Cross. Cross is an ethnic studies major.
Cross has been one of the most active Huskers in community outreach efforts. He is a two-time member of the Brook Berringer Citizenship Team and also a 2014 member of the Tom Osborne Citizenship Team. Cross has volunteered his time with numerous organizations and events, including Uplifting Athletes, Make-a-Wish, School is Cool Week, Husker Hotline, FCA, and many school, hospital and community center outreach events. Cross was also presented a Nebraska Student-Athlete HERO Leadership Award in 2013.
Cross’ brother, Izaan, played defensive end at Georgia Tech, completing his career in 2012.
Cross' Career Statistics
44 vs. Arkansas State
51 vs. Michigan State
51 vs. Michigan State
Single-Game Highs » Rushes – 16 at Purdue (2013) » Rushing Yards – 105 vs. Wyoming (2013) » Rushing Touchdowns – 2 five times (twice in 2012, three times in 2013)
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