Appleton picks Wisconsin over Illinois

Ending months of speculation, Kraig Appleton of East St. Louis has signed his letter of intent with the University of Wisconsin, reneging on his "soft verbal" to the Illini.

Appleton is a four-star recruit and ranked No. 19 among wide receivers by Scout.com. He gave Illinois an oral commitment last summer, but it was no secret he was still shopping as he made an official visit to Madison Oct. 3. Last month, at the U.S. Army All-American bowl, it was rumored that Appleton would announce his intentions to sign with Wisconsin, but he never showed up in San Antonio.

According to Scout.com, Appleton's top choice was Illinois, but his mother's top choice was Wisconsin. Last weekend, while Appleton was visiting Illinois, UW coaches DelVaughn Alexander, Paul Chryst and Dave Doeren visited his mother.

This is obviously a huge signing for Bret Bielema who has yet to pull in a strong recruiting class and appears to be short on wide receiver talent. It is yet to be seen how this will affect the rankings of UW's 2009 recruiting class, which has been ranked around No. 6 or 7 in the Big Ten by recruiting analysts thus far.

We'll have much more on the rest of the class as the day goes on.

Here's a list of commitments received so far, courtesy of Badgerbeat.com.

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