The Nebraska Football team has been working hard since 2017 kicked off to try and improve on the strides it made in recruiting with the last class. One of the big needs in this year's class is going to be one or more running backs.

If the Huskers can haul in someone like Florida native TJ Pledger, it would go a long way towards making this year's Nebraska football recruiting class the second straight solid haul for Mike Riley and company. The four-star prospect recently narrowed down his list to a top-eight and Nebraska made the cut.

Nebraska football beats out Big Ten foes

While there is still a long road to hoe for the Huskers when it comes to getting Pledger to commit to the school, making the top eight is quite the accomplishment on its own. Michigan, Ohio State and Penn State had all offered the IMG Academy player a scholarship as well and all three missed the cut.

The Nebraska football team simply has to win these kinds of battles if it wants to move up the ranks in recruiting against the Big Ten. The Huskers have gone toe-to-toe with Ohio State especially on recent recruits and have won some and lost some.

Getting to be the only Big Ten program that is still getting attention from the nation's second-ranked running back is big.

The final eight

Pledger announced the schools that have made his final eight on Twitter on Thursday night and the list spans the country when it comes to geography. Along with Nebraska, the Oklahoma Sooners, Oregon Ducks, Clemson Tigers, Georgia Bulldogs, Notre Dame Fighting Irish and Tennesee Volunteers are getting some love.

If there is one school left off that is a bit of a surprise it's the USC Trojans.

According to 247Sports, USC was one of the favorites to not only make a top eight but get an official commitment from Pledger. Still, the Nebraska football team is facing an uphill battle. The Sooners have long been the favorite to land the running back and they are obviously still in the running with the release of this list. Now that he's pared down who he's looking at, things will likely move quicker for Pledger.