With the 2014 NFL Draft starting Thursday, there's no better time to update you on the prospects of former Badgers having their names called over the weekend. We start our Monday action with Andrew's piece on offensive guard Ryan Groy. I thought the Middleton, Wis, native was going to follow in the footsteps of past high-round UW offensive linemen, but he still had a serviceable final year in Madison. As Andrew points out, Groy is largely considered a late-round pick, but there's no shame in serving as a utility offensive lineman at the next level.
Jacob Pedersen is another guy who flew under the radar during his senior season with preseason lofty expectations. Despite this, the tight end still produced a career-high receiving output with 551 yards. He needs to add weight to his slender 241-pound stature, but Pedersen has the talent to succeed in the NFL and the versatility as a receiving option to go along with it, as Andrew documents.
Sports Illustrated's Don Banks identifies some potential prospects who could land as undrafted free agents and former UW defensive lineman Beau Allen is among them. While I don't necessary agree with Banks' draft predicted placement of Allen, there isn't a doubt he will make an NFL roster. One of the biggest reasons behind this lies in the fact he possesses the fine skill of stopping the run, and there are certainly teams that need this.
NFL Draft analyst Tony Pauline spoke with Fox Sports Wisconsin's Dave Heller and broke down Wisconsin's NFL prospects. As opposed to other mock drafts elsewhere around the world wide web, he slated Jared Abbrederis as a fifth-round pick, duly noting his lack of the desirable measurables, while also predicting Chris Borland will go in the third round. Elsewhere, he is particularly high on Dezmen Southward, Allen, and Groy.
Head coach Gary Andersen and his staff secured the team's fourth commitment for the class of 2015 in Seymour offensive lineman Jon Dietzen. According to 247 Sports, Dietzen is listed as the 2015 No.1 in-state prospect and the nation's 31st-best offensive tackle. Ben Strickland was the lead recruiter for Dietzen, and his commitment bumped up Strickland's Big Ten recruiting rank to No. 24 in the conference.
Nick breaks down the season had by Sam Dekker while Neal breaks down Frank Kaminsky's. Additionally, they look ahead to both of these players' 2014-15 productivity and possibility of increasing their NBA Draft stock. It's going to be fun, boys and girls. It's going to be really, really fun.
As mentioned in Friday's Badger Bits, Director of Basketball Operations Luke Wainwright has left his role with the men's basketball program. He spoke with the Wisconsin State Journal's Jim Polzin and revealed the underlying reason for his departure: a passion for coaching.
With the College Football Playoff Committee announcing its intended days of meeting and protocol for revealing rankings recently, UW athletic director Barry Alvarez will be a busy man this fall. Alvarez outlined several important tidbits surrounding the specific roles for each member of the committee, the criteria they will hold for the four qualified teams and much more with Wisconsin State Journal's Andy Baggot.
When naysayers were directing their pre-draft attention toward Russell Wilson in anticipation of the 2011 NFL Draft, Alvarez was one of the few to calm those down who could not see past Wilson's non-ideal size as an NFL quarterback. Alvarez is at it again in standing up for former Badgers, as he disregards the notion of Borland's ailing shoulder hurting his draft stock.
"If you're interested in him, you leak that...so that he maybe slips in somebody else's eyes. But these other guys, they've studied it. They know that shoulder inside and out. If they're interested, they know that shoulder is good."
Jake and Scott talk this week's NFL Draft and where former Badgers will be drafted with CheeseheadTV's Brian Carriveau. They also discuss the prospect of the Brewers keeping up their hot start.
Freshman Sara Novak clinched the Big Ten tournament's No. 4 seed for Yvette Healy's squad with her game-winning home run against Michigan in a 6-5 victory.
Former UW skater and Anaheim Ducks prospect Nic Kerdiles threw out the first pitch for the Triple-A Norfolk Tides on Saturday night. Kerdiles is current playing with the Norfolk Admirals, and had a goal in the team's 3-2 series-clinching win to secure a spot in the AHL's Eastern Conference semifinals.
Eric LeGrand talks his recovery, the 2014 NFL Draft and his graduation from Rutgers with SB Nation's Dan Rubenstein.
Video of the Day
The should-have-been star of "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air," Ryan Evans will vastly be remembered in Madison for his perfected flat top and jump-shot free throw. The swing man might not have been the fastest guy on the court, but he could rebound the basketball at will for Bo Ryan. There's no better way to cheer up your Monday than with a three-point play followed by a jump-shot chuck from the charity stripe against the Cornhuskers.