Oh man, Wisconsin has a chance at something big this weekend. Camps will be held Friday and Sunday, and some sources say the Badgers will get to at least 10 commitments by Monday.
There are some big names coming this weekend, too. News is coming, and here's our (best as we can) guide to it all. Below are the committed and unoffered recruits that are expected to visit Madison this weekend. Friday morning, we'll break down the offered prospects the Badgers have been chasing and their chances at landing them.
The Badgers will have five of their nine committed prospects on-site for visits: quarterback Austin Kafentzis, offensive tackles David Moorman and Jon Dietzen, tight end (and noted recruiting coordinator Kyle Penniston) and defensive lineman David Pfaff.
Now, before we continue, there's one nuance that needs further exploration. There are going to be players that come and participate in the camp proceedings. Most of these players are ones you'd expect; they're looking for the scholarships and hoping to get on the Badgers' radar.
But there are those who won't. Michael Weber's already a high-value target. He doesn't need to see what exactly he can do against an Alvin Burris Jr., to get his place at the table. Not to throw any shade at the Brian Coles and Webers of the world. They're in a place where they can just see a lovely city and have coaches tell them they're great and wouldn't they look great in Badger red and white?
Either way, there are plenty of recruits coming to Madison. The hyped and unhyped, the prospects to close and the prospects looking for an open window to get that offer. This weekend there will be teeming masses. It's going to be interesting.
QB James Morgan (Ashwaubenon, Wis.): He's still a four-star quarterback, but he went to Minnesota's camp last weekend and left offerless. He's impressed in every passing camp he's been at, but he's still without an offer from a former AQ school. He also isn't the perfect system fit for the Badgers' offense.
QB Mikale Washington (Detroit): I know that he's graded out as a Pro-style quarterback, but Mikale isn't a quarterback that is lead-footed. He models himself after Marcus Mariota and it shows in his highlight reel. Washington's come east to find potential fame and fortune, transferring from Morse High School in San Diego. He has no offers, but the 2016 prospect has interest from both the Michigan schools. Don't be surprised if he gets his first offer this weekend.
RB Markell Jones (Columbus, Ind.): It's a deep year at running back for the Badgers' board. When a back like Mikell Lands-Davis is running fourth, you're looking at a position where it might be difficult to land an offer. Jones, like Nasir Bonner, is a back who seems to have lost that fourth star in transit to his senior season. That being said, he was dominant last season (10.71 yards per carry) and his Hudl profile shows a back who could open eyes.
RB Jamari Manuel (Madison, Wis.): There's one fact you need to know when you look at Manuel's Hudl profile: he's quick and can make you pay if he gets to the second level. On the flip side, he doesn't have the power game locked down, but here's the thing: Manuel goes to Madison East. The last time the Purgolders won a game? Sept. 23, 2011.
RB Matthew Falcon (Southfield, Mich.): To say Falcon is touted is an understatement; he already has an offer from Ohio State in his quiver. You can safely assume that the Badgers wouldn't be alone if they offer him as well. If Falcon didn't tear his ACL in a preseason camp last season, the Badgers would've probably already offered him. Before the injury, he had a sub-4.5-second 40-time (so basically like 4.48). With good health, Matt Falcon, man of action, is going to have all sorts of memes of joy in his future. Kids, ask your dads about "Die Hard".
RB Toren Young (Monona Grove, Wis.): This 2016 prospect is a good one-cut runner and has the vision and agility to do good work on the seam. He currently doesn't have an offer, but If he camps well this weekend, it could open up his recruiting.
WR C.J. Johnson (Bellvue, Neb.): Johnson's 6'2 and has a 40-yard dash hand-timed in the low 4.4s. He has some good mid-major offers from Ohio, Western Michigan, and Wyoming, and he went through Nebraska's last camp and came out offerless. A good camp in Madison could change everything.
WR Chase Scharnek (Waukesha, Wis.): A tall kid (6'3) with good hands, decent athleticism and a home city that starts with 'W' and ends in 'a'? Oh man, he's totally going to be Jared Abbrederis. Maybe not, but his Hudl profile shows he has some polish to his game.
WR Josh Sromovsky (Oregon, Wis.): Here's another tall receiver (6'3) with Wisconsin-level sprinter speed. Sromovsky's tie to Abbrederis is that he's got skills on the jet sweep. He runs that with power. It's definitely a neat thing he can do, though he is currently offerless.
TE Richard Burney (Chesapeake, Va.): Don't be surprised if Burney gets an offer at some point this year. With Liam McCullough committing to Ohio University-Columbus, there are two words that could get Burney in the race: long snapper. Outside of his ability there, you have a prospect with a good athletic frame (6'5, 235 pounds, 4.69-second 40) and some positional versatility (he can also slot as an outside linebacker).
TE Luke Roberts (Rhinelander, Wis.): If you're looking for something that could be somebody in the 2016, Roberts has potential. He's not there yet, but you can see him growing into something as he adds to his 6'3 frame. He's a good blocker, and sitting in zones and catching passes can be improved upon. But he needs a good camp to show that it isn't just being better than the remnants of a country music festival.
OT Vincent Hughes (Franklin, Wis.): If the Badgers offer, Hughes would likely take about five minutes to commit. He has a good skill set to him and has that tall, lanky frame -- 6'6, 255 pounds -- that can add weight to it with little loss of athleticism. He's also a fairly solid run-blocker at this point.
OT Ian Dretzka (Kettle Moraine, Wis.): Mike told you some about him on Monday. Dretzka has a good frame at 6'5, 285 pounds, with good power to his game. His listed 40-time (5.80) must improve if he's going to get offers on the FBS level.
OT Jordan Steckler (Two Rivers, Wis.): He's a prospect who already has multiple FCS offers and the Air Force. Like most Wisconsin offensive line prospects, he has good size (6'5, 290 pounds) and the power to go with it. He can play guard and get to the second level. Gut feeling is that the Badgers could find their way to get him an offer even if they don't offer him at camp.
OT Blake Camper (Virginia Beach, Va.): Here's a potential future left tackle from the talent-rich state of Virginia. Camper is 6'7, 280 pounds, with a good bit of agility to pull and go reach the second level along with his pancaking power. He already has offers from Louisville, Northwestern, Miami, Rutgers, and Virginia, and 247 Sports says that a camp offer could lead to a camp commit.
OG Nolan Kern (Eau Claire, Wis.): This prospect from Regis is already north of 300 pounds and his highlight reel shows he has good power to his game. It also shows that the offensive line had some really tight splits. It leaves a question of his ability to play outside of an elevator. Kern might be able to get a foothold with a positive response.
OG Nathan Veloz (Oak Creek, Wis.): No one's offered, but Veloz has had some interesting schools hovering around him: Iowa, Michigan State, Nebraska, and Oregon, to name a few. He's kept a decent 40-time (5.10 seconds) even coming in at 310 pounds, and he could get the offers started with a big weekend.
OG Jake Heinrich (Urbandale, Iowa): This 2016 prospect already squats 550 pounds. Yes, that's good, and it shows in his Hudl profile. Sure, his 40-time is slow, but he has that leg drive to blow people off the ball in short-area space. Iowa State is his only current offer, but it won't be the last he gets.
OG Sam Schlueter (Mayer, Minn.): You know that whole part about trying to explain a lanky offensive line prospect that can add weight without losing much athleticism and not repeating yourself in it? It's a difficult wicket to crack. Schlueter's 6'6, 255 pounds. He currently doesn't have an offer to his name, but with a good camp, someone's bound to look closer at this 2016 prospect.
DE Adam Holtorf (Seward, Neb.): Holton's one of those prospects who has an intriguing BCS offer to his name, but outside of Kansas State, he's flying under the radar. As a defender, he bull rushes with power and holds up at the point of attack. He's got that lanky frame I keep harping on, too (6'5, 255 pounds). Holtorf might not be the purest athlete, but he's a big, strong farm kid that can grow into a road grader.
DE Nate Howard (Saint Louis, Mo.): Howard could be a top sleeper end prospect at 6'5, 220 pounds. Wisconsin's really the only school with reported interest in him, but that doesn't matter -- you can draw your own conclusions from his Hudl tape.
DE Andrew Ruzek (Stevens Point, Wis.): Yes, here's another kid with a good frame (6'6, 240 pounds). It's as if I am at a house and trying to avoid saying mean things about their wiener kids over here. Anyway, Ruzek hand-fights pretty well and brings disruptive tendencies to the pass rush. If the Badgers offer, he's another "spend time in the weight room" kind of guy.
OLB Corde O'Neal (Summit Argo, Ill.): I have a tendency to speak in archetypes every now and again when it comes to recruits. It's easy to use as a shorthand and helps the layman understand what I mean quickly. That said, as someone who is a good athlete who plays both ways, but is a willing and aggressive tackler, O'Neal could develop into this season's T.J. Edwards. He's got a Northern Illinois offer already to his name.
OLB Ethan Tucky (Delaware, Ohio): If Tucky escapes this weekend without an offer, something's likely going to have to go wrong for the 2016 prospect. He has sprinter speed (a listed 100-meter sprint in the 10.9 range) and his 40 time is somewhere between 4.5 and 4.6 seconds. He also had 18.5 tackles for loss and 20 quarterback hurries as a sophomore. It's a two-horse race between Ohio State and Notre Dame, but an early offer could wedge Wisconsin in.
ILB Noah Lazaro (Lincoln, Neb.): There's a definite chance Lazaro comes in and steals an offer here. He seems like he runs something closer to a mid-to-high 4.6-second 40-time than what's listed on his 247 profile. His Hudl profile shows someone who runs sideline-to-sideline and when he gets a shot going downhill, good things happen. He had 136 tackles last season, makes plays and is a solid athlete. A good camp could mean big things.
ILB Jake Whalen (Wausau, Wis.): Of course the home-state kid isn't going to just decide to play for the preferred walk-on spot. He's not as agile as Lazaro is, but he does have that wrestling toughness to him. He'll hand-fight and win against blockers and stand his ground if he's the point of attack. Whalen isn't fighting for one scholarship; after all, there are going to be nine scholarship linebacker's in next year's 3-4 defense if the Badgers lose on everybody. He's not going to get there on accord alone.
ILB Alvin Burris Jr. (Miwaukee, Wis): Burris is one of those classic tweeners: a step too slow to play safety, an inch or two too short play linebacker. But the 2016 prospect does have the ruthless aggression and good linebacker speed that if he can get to 230 pounds and keep his 40-time around 4.70 seconds, there will come a day where the offers will be his. Even if not, I wouldn't put it past him to crack a two-deep as a walk-on.
CB Antonio Shenault (Roselle, Ill.): Shenault fits that Gary Andersen archetype. He's 5'9 and quick, and his Hudl profile shows that he attacks. Iowa State and Minnesota have both already offered, but a good camp and Wisconsin will at the very least put him on the board for future reference.
CB Justin Tranquill (Fort Wayne, Ind.): if you're looking for a good example of what Tranquill could be, you only need to look brotherward. Drue Tranquill got to Notre Dame on the strength of good offers. Justin might well join him in the end, but he has that aggression and quickness that the Badgers like. I'd be surprised if he left Madison without an offer, that's for sure.
S Jaxon Brown (Eau Claire, Wis.): This is the Regis prospect who just might surprise. Brown has a little bit of "intimidating closer" in him; spending your winters playing hockey will do that. He shows good lateral athleticism, and can hit hard when he goes downhill. He only has offers from Fordham and South Dakota State, but he could well be the eye-opener.