Earlier last week we started our series of recruiting breakdowns with a look at the quarterback position. At the time it appeared as if everything was good to go for the Wisconsin Badgers.
That all changed on Friday night, as the Badgers parted ways with three-star quarterback Ben Bryant. It was a messy situation, with the Badgers looking petty at times and the reality of just wanting to move on likely setting in.
Wisconsin cooled on Bryant for some reason or reasons we are likely to never really know. But, knowing Paul Chryst and Co., they have a plan in place to get that second quarterback commitment in place. They wouldn’t have dumped Bryant from his offer without a goal in mind.
Having Chase Wolf in the fold certainly made things easier, but whom do the Badgers turn to for that second commitment?
One has to start with the players that were already on UW’s board, and with Bryant’s offer being pulled perhaps the writing is on the wall with one of the two players UW was really in the mix for previously.
The first name seems obvious, as the second spot came down to Wolf and Jacksonville, Fla. product Carter Bradley. It seemed like a game of commitment chicken between the two, but it was Wolf who’s recruitment was to be over first.
Bradley is still wide open in his recruitment and has readily indicated he still has major interest in the Badgers program. Does that interest change with the knowledge of what went down with Bryant? According to a report from our recruiting partners at Badger247, Bradley has high interest ($) in the program and if UW reaches out it could be an easy commitment to make.
However, one of the more intriguing situations could come from a name that was at the top of UW’s board back in December.
Again, the Badgers put the squeeze on a two-quarterback situation and it was Bryant that was ready to commit over four-star signal caller Jack Tuttle from Mission Hills (San Marcos, Calif.) High School.
Since then, Tuttle has committed to Utah but has been open in his recruiting process. Back in December Tuttle made it clear he had no problem being part of a two-quarterback class. He’s also very open to suitors at this point. He’s thrown for Alabama and picked up an offer from Arizona in the past few months.
Will a spot in the Badgers quarterback room be enough to lure him away from a commitment he’s already made? It isn’t like the Badgers to just start going hard after a player who is committed unless said player makes it know he wants to be recruited.
If anything happens with the Badgers and Tuttle, it will happen only because Tuttle wants it to. Don’t count on this one happening though, instead, I’d look at Bradley as the easy option here.
Should Bradley also be turned off, Wisconsin certainly has time this summer to come up with another player they want to get an offer out to. Having Jon Budmayr out on the recruiting trail exclusively looking at quarterbacks will also help.
Badgers add sleeper DE to 2020 class
It is official visit season for college football recruiting once again. All it took was the first of those weekends for the Wisconsin Badgers to add to their 2020 class.
Wisconsin was the first Power 5 offer for Thompson when they offered back in July and that recognition was very helpful in getting him on campus and eventually to verbally commit.
Navy had also offered Thompson according to his 247Sports profile.
He is the 15th name to verbally commit to the Badgers program and the second defensive end, joining Cade McDonald (Hudson, Wis.) in the mix.
Thompson’s film screams a ton of potential and a good bit of athleticism. Most importantly, he screams one of those under the radar players who the Badgers excel at identifying and getting the most out of once on campus.
At 6-5 and 255 pounds, the frame is there for him to build off of physically.
Wisconsin sits at No. 28 nationally and No. 5 in the Big Ten in the 2020 recruiting cycle and has 15 total verbal commits.
Acker becomes Badgers 2nd 2021 football commit
It didn’t take long for the Wisconsin Badgers to know that local product Jackson Acker was a kid they wanted. It also didn’t take Acker long to know he wanted to play for the Badgers.
Shortly after earning an offer at camp this weekend, the Verona running back pledged to the Badgers.
In doing so, he became the second commit in the 2021 class and the second in-state product to make his verbal pledge to the Badgers following in the footsteps of JP Benzschawel.
According to Badger247, Acker was timed at 4.63 in the 40-yard dash at camp and comes in at 6-1 and 214 pounds after his sophomore season.
Acker ran for 528 yards and seven touchdowns in his sophomore season as well.
Given UW’s history at running back, this type of an early offer indicates the coaching staff seeing something big time in the player.
You can see that on his film, as he not only uses his speed, but has a big time ability to find creases and get up field quickly when he does find him.
Perhaps the most impressive thing on film is what he does in 1-on-1 situations. Instead of slowing down to try something fancy, Acker just punishes the defender and that is something the Badgers coaching staff loves.
You can see the old-school, bruising back that the Badgers have really missed as of late in him. It could be a nice thunder-and-lightning combination at work here with Acker in the fold.
It also means that the Badgers are likely looking for a pair of running backs in the 2021 class, because they are hard after some of the bigger names as well.
No matter what happens, clearly this coaching staff wasn’t afraid to offer the in-state product and take the chance of having him commit. That’s a strong belief in what they saw in person over limited tape so far to say the least.
Badgers add in-state DE to 2020 class
Sometimes patience and hard work pay off. Such was the case for in-state defensive end Cade McDonald.
After an impressive showing at the Badgers camp this past weekend, the Hudson, Wis. native picked up an offer from the home state team. It took just a few days for McDonald to return the love and announce his commitment to the program.
On Monday, he made things official and became commitment No. 8 in the 2020 class for the Badgers according to Badger247.
Wisconsin was the only FBS offer for McDonald at the time of his commitment. Other schools that were after him included FCS schools like Illinois State, North Dakota and South Dakota.
The Badgers now have the No. 24 ranked class in the 2020 recruiting cycle per 247Sports team rankings.
McDonald becomes just the second defensive player to commit in this class as well, joining fellow in-state product Cole Dakovich on that side of the ball.
Overall, McDonald is a 2-star recruit and the No. 98 ranked defensive end in the country per 247Sports rankings.
Badgers get commitment from 2020 OLB Cole Dakovich
The 209 football recruiting cycle hasn’t technically ended and already things are heating up quickly for the 2020 Wisconsin Badgers recruiting class.
A day after accepting a verbal pledge from in-state wide receiver Chimere Dike, the Badgers now have their 6th member of the 2020 class with Waukesha (Wis.) Catholic outside linebacker Cole Dakovich announcing his pledge on Twitter on Friday morning.
This was another quick recruiting life cycle, as UW offered on Saturday during their first junior day and Dakovich jumped on the offer a week later.
He is another under the radar recruit, with the Badgers offer being his only to date. However, that is more likely because Dakovich has played only one year of football since the 7th grade and it was a productive year at that.
In his first year back to playing football, Dakovich racked up 105 tackles, 18 for loss, 2.0 sacks, two interceptions, and three forced fumbles. He also had 16 receptions for 150 yards and a touchdown on the offensive side of the ball.
Wisconsin has a long and storied history of identifying these types of prospects and having them turn out well over their time in Madison.
He is not ranked by any of the scouting services out there, that’s how little football he has played to date.
The Badgers are now 11th nationally in the 2020 team recruiting rankings after some movement around the country yesterday.
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