Badger Bits: Brust could join Badgers afterall

Bo Ryan and recruit Ben Brust got some good news this morning when UW won its appeal to waive a Big Ten rule that would have prohibited the Mundelein (Ill.) High School guard from signing with Wisconsin.

Because Brust originally signed with Iowa before Todd Lickliter was fired, a league rule stated he could not sign with any other team in the conference. Originally the Big Ten upheld the rule, but UW appealed on Brust's behalf.

This does not guarantee that Brust will sign with Wisconsin, but taking into consideration all the effort UW put into appealing this rule, one would have to think he is set to join the Badgers. Why would UW want to open the door for him to sign elsewhere in the conference?

Brust would be a solid fourth addition to an already exciting recruiting class. Badly in need of a 2-guard, he would fit perfectly in that role. Incoming recruit Josh Gasser is more of a point guard and fellow recruit Duje Dukan will fit more comfortably in the small forward position.

Brust averaged 24 points as a high school senior.

While UW might be gaining a recruit for 2010, it lost one for 2011 as Devon Hodges reopened his recruitment. This is not a big loss for Wisconsin as Hodges is only considered a one-star recruit and averaged just over 10 points a game as a junior. He verbally committed to UW nearly two years ago and hasn't improved the way the Wisconsin coaching staff was hoping he would.

If you haven't heard, the UW men's basketball team might join the football team in playing a game at UNLV this season. The two schools are working on a home-and-home series that would bring the rebels to the Kohl Center in 2011. The game in Las Vegas would reportedly be played Nov. 20.

It's been three years since UW last had a first-round NFL draft pick but that drought might end in 2011 because offensive tackle Gabe Carimi is considered one of the best prospects in next year's draft. This 2011 mock draft from SI.com has Carimi going eighth overall to Kansas City.

Just a quick thought on Chris Maragos signing with San Francisco: I don't he will be as good as Jim Leonhard but he certainly is on that "walk-on" path and plenty of undrafted players end up as starters in the NFL. Maragos fits in well in the 49ers system and will get a chance to prove himself. As we know, that's all he needs.

Finally, this was expected, but UW hockey juniors Brendan Smith and Cody Goloubef will forego their senior years and turn pro. Smith has a good chance to play next season with the Detroit Red Wings, while Goloubef will join the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Meanwhile, former Badgers Jack Skille and Jake Dowell were called up by the Blackhawks to join them during the playoffs. Neither will play in any games but since their season in Rockford is over, they provide bodies in practice. And while you didn't see any big numbers from Adam Burish in the first-round against Nashville, I don't think it's any coincidence that after not playing in the first three games, the Blackhawks won three straight with him in the lineup to win the series.

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