For the most part, the decisions are made. Just shy of 30 high school players on Wednesday are expected to sign letters of intent to play football at Wisconsin beginning in 2014, and once the pen touches the paper, all that's left is the fax to UW's coaches. Yes, there still isn't a better way to execute this process, even in 2014.
For the Badgers, the decisions of two prospects will highlight the day and potentially transform Gary Andersen's first full recruiting class at Wisconsin from good-but-disappointing-late to solid, with everything trending upward for the short- and long-term future.
Four-star, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., cornerback Chris Lammons is the headliner, having decommitted from Florida in January and narrowed his choices to Wisconsin and South Carolina. Crystal ballers at 247 Sports have Lammons headed to the Gamecocks by a 91 to 7 percent margin, though if you're to believe the various recruiting services out there, his people really, really like Wisconsin. Remember, for "high-profile" decisions like this, the great majority of stakeholders are quite often left in the dark until signing day.
The second recruit the Badgers are waiting on is three-star, New Smyrna Beach, Fla., safety D'Cota Dixon. Dixon's widely expected to pick Wisconsin over Michigan State, and doing so would give the Badgers their third safety of the class.
The remaining recruit to watch is a verbal the Badgers are expected to lose. Three-star Memphis athlete Cornelius Sturghill committed to UW in late January, though Louisville has come knocking with an offer to play offense, unlike Wisconsin's. Several reports suggest the Badgers will indeed lose Sturghill on Wednesday.
The momentum gathered by Andersen' staff for much of the recruiting cycle faded late considering the loss of three defensive players in Rohan Blackwood, Joe Keels and Craig Evans, as well as narrow misses on a few high-profile recruits, including Joe Mixon and Jamil Kamara. But this class is big, 26 prospects deep with seven early enrollees entering Wednesday.
Andersen and co., assuredly wanted more, as did most Badgers fans. The state of Wisconsin football, though, is at the very least stable, and depending on the status of a few potential "sleepers" (looking at you, Dominic Cizauskas, Jacob Maxwell and T.J. Edwards), this class could surprise many with its depth.
Approximate decision times:
All times CT
7-10 a.m.: LOIs faxed in
8 a.m.: D'Cota Dixon
8:30 a.m.: Cornelius Sturghill
Noon: Chris Lammons
Gary Andersen media appearances:
Noon: Taped interview on Big Ten Network
1:15 p.m.: CBSSports.com's Signing Day Special
1:30 p.m.: Sirius/XM Radio with Bill King
1:45 p.m.: ESPNU (Phone interview)
2 p.m.: Press conference in Madison (assistant coaches to follow)
3 p.m.: ESPN.com (Phone interview)
How to watch NSD:
ESPNU: Probably the central channel of the day for recruitniks, ESPNU will begin its signing day coverage at 7 a.m. CT and run it through 6 p.m. The network will air multiple announcements from top prospects, and naturally break down everything, probably ad nauseam. But hey, you probably asked for it.
Big Ten Network: The "Big Ten Football Report" airs at 3 p.m. and will have conference-related updates and analysis.
CBS Sports Network: CBSSN will air the first of its two programs Wednesday at 9 a.m., followed by the second at 2 p.m. Both will run two hours and feature live announcements and commentary.
Fox Sports One: FS1's coverage will begin at 2:30 p.m. and last for just 30 minutes. No announcements are expected.
Chris Lammons: South Carolina
D'Cota Dixon: Wisconsin
Cornelius Sturghill: Louisville
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