Badger Bits: The calm before the storm

It's a sleepy time of year for Badger athletics, underscored by UW's lack of a baseball team. That doesn't mean there isn't plenty to do around town here in Madison, from Brat Fest to Mallards games to the weekly farmers' market on the Capitol square. But Camp Randall Stadium and the Kohl Center sit dormant this season, eagerly awaiting an exciting fall.

Here is what's making headlines in Badgerland:

Perhaps our fans in the Kohler area made it out to the rainy Badger Day hosted in Wisconsin's foremost golf destination?

The university announced departing safety Chris Maragos has earned yet another honor from the Big Ten Conference. He's one of UW's two 2010 Outstanding Sportsmanship Award winners.

As expected, former head coach and current Wisconsin athletic director Barry Alvarez is an inductee in the College Football Hall of Fame's Class of 2010.

This is the time of year when college football junkies enjoy reading preview magazines forecasting the upcoming season almost as much as watching the NBA and Stanley Cup Finals. Phil Steele is high on the Badgers, and you can read about where some Wisconsin players place on his All-America and All-Big Ten teams here.

Also as predicted, junior defenseman Brendan Smith of the Badger men's hockey team will leave UW for the Detroit Red Wings. Smith was a finalist for the Hobey Baker Award, which ultimately went to Wisconsin's Blake Geoffrion. The 2009-10 Frozen Four squad will have some major holes to fill this season.

College Football News likes Wisconsin's offense entering the 2010 season, especially John Clay, Lance Kendricks and Philip Welch.

Mike Lucas sizes up Mike Eaves' newest assistant, Bill Butters, who has played and coached for... Minnesota?

Badger Heisman Trophy winner Ron Dayne apparently lost a *lot* of his college football memorabilia in a burglary.

Former Badger hoops star Clayton Hanson is returning to his hometown to run a basketball skills camp, writes Rob Schultz.

The football team's latest recruit, Eric Steffes of Fond du Lac, likes the way the Badgers are stockpiling tight ends in their 2011 class, writes Tom Mulhern.

Adam Rittenberg thinks even though running back John Clay is the Badgers' best player, the health of Scott Tolzien is more vital to the team's success in 2010.

-Jake Harris

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