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Wisconsin football recruiting: QB Austin Kafentzis enrolls early with Badgers

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The first verbal commit to the Class of 2015 for Wisconsin brings to Madison a record-setting prep career and a lot of potential in Paul Chryst's pro-style offense.

UW Athletic Communications
Class Position Height Weight
2015 QB 6'1 200 lbs.
School Composite Ranking
Sandy, Utah (Jordan) 3-star recruit3-star recruit3-star recruit No. 16 DUAL QB

What more needs to be said about Sandy, Utah (Jordan) quarterback Austin Kafentzis? A four-year starter at quarterback for the Beetdiggers, he led Sandy to a state championship his sophomore season. After that, he only went out to tie or shatter 13 Utah state prep records, including including total passing yards (13,079), total career touchdown passes (115), career rushing yards (6,942) and career rushing touchdowns (103).

Now, as enrolls early at the university, he's part of a class that's heavily hyped by the Wisconsin fan base. As he noted in our October article about his preparation during his senior high school season"Why wait the extra four months when you can go up there and start your dream early and start working hard as soon as you step on campus?"

Rankings

Rivals:  5.6

Scout:  (No. 54 QB)

ESPN 80 (No. 12 Dual-threat QB)

247: 89 (No. 16 Dual-threat QB)

Austin Kafentzis

Credit: Kim Babka

Verbally committed on June 18, 2013

He committed early on in his recruitment to Wisconsin in June 2013, but received known offers from BYU, Utah and Utah State, though according to some reports there may have been other, more high-profile programs going after him. When he first verbally pledged to the Badgers, he was the second Utah commit for former head coach Gary Andersen. Former Wisconsin assistants Andy Ludwig and Chad Kauha'aha'a are credited with bringing in the three-star quarterback, who's primarily run a spread-based offense in Utah.....

.....which made things interesting after Andersen left town abruptly to head to Oregon State. Rumors swirled whether Kafentzis would de-commit and look to Corvallis or another program. However, after a phone conversation with new head coach Paul Chryst, Kafentzis reaffirmed his Wisconsin pledge live on Milwaukee radio station 1250 WSSP in late December:

Kafentzis noted he didn't want Chryst to feel like he 'inherited" a commit but needed reassurance he was wanted at Wisconsin. The 6'0, 205-pound quarterback wanted to continue to play the position he's set many Utah state prep records at, and he feels like he can work in any offense -- spread or pro-style. He also studied highlights of former Wisconsin quarterback Russell Wilson during the 2011 season to see Chryst's offense in motion. Kafentzis plans to be in Madison on Jan. 12 to begin spring conditioning and his first semester at Wisconsin.

"I'm just going work my tail off, study the playbook," Kafentzis said. "Do whatever I need to do, go in there with the work ethic, show up on campus and get to know coaches more, and just listen to everything they have to say."

Highlights

Statistics (via MaxPreps.com)

Senior: 56.1 completion percentage, 3,862 yards, 40 touchdown passes; 1,842 yards rushing, 25 rushing touchdowns

Junior: 50.1 completion percentage, 3,011 yards, 20 touchdown passes; 1,839 yards rushing, 30 rushing touchdowns

Sophomore: 63.9 completion percentage, 3,018 yards, 32 touchdown passes; 1,884 yards rushing, 26 rushing touchdowns

Freshman: 57.9 completion percentage, 3,188 yards, 23 touchdown passes; 1,337 yards rushing, 22 rushing touchdowns