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National Signing Day 2015: RB Jordan Stevenson signs with Wisconsin

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Dallas (South Oak Cliff) running back Jordan Stevenson joins one of the most talented Wisconsin backfield classes in recent memory.

Class Position Height Weight
2015 RB 5'8 185 lbs.
School Composite Ranking
Dallas, TX (South Oak Cliff) 3-star recruit3-star recruit3-star recruit3-star recruit No. 17 RB

Despite late interest from Oklahoma State, Dallas (South Oak Cliff) running back Jordan Stevenson is officially a Wisconsin Badgers running back. The 5'8, 185-pound running back comes to Wisconsin as a former Texas recruit, and the highest-rated player in UW's class. Interestingly enough, he committed to UW shortly after Gary Andersen left and before Paul Chryst had been hired.

As a speedier back who's on the smaller end, Stevenson could provide an excellent change of pace behind Corey Clement in Wisconsin's backfield next year. The Badger are also bringing in three-star Birmingham, Ala. (Hoover), running back Bradrick Shaw, who's more of a bruising runner. However the position group shakes out, it should be deep and full of prominsing young talent.

Rankings

Rivals: 3-star recruit3-star recruit3-star recruit3-star recruit; RB: No. 27; Texas: No. 30

Scout: 3-star recruit3-star recruit3-star recruit3-star recruit; Rank: No. 84; RB: No. 12; Regional RB: No. 4; Texas RB: No. 4

ESPN: 3-star recruit3-star recruit3-star recruit3-star recruit; Grade: 80; RB: No. 32; Regional: No. 59; Texas: No. 48

247: 3-star recruit3-star recruit3-star recruit3-star recruit; Grade: 91; RB: No. 17; Texas: No. 30

Verbally committed Dec. 11, 2014

As Texas continued to recruit other running backs, talk of Stevenson decommitting intensified. Finally, he pulled the trigger and ended up with Wisconsin shortly thereafter.

Stevenson also held offers from Alabama, Arkansas, Louisville, Ohio State, SMU, UCLA, Utah State and others before committing to Texas in October 2013.

SB Nation recruiting expert Wescott Eberts has the following scouting report on Stevenson:

In an extremely talented group of Texas running backs for the 2015 class, Stevenson may be the fastest -- he ran a laser-time 4.37 40 at the Dallas NFTC in 2013, a number that matched Alabama cornerback signee Tony Brown, an elite track athlete.

Stevenson followed up that impressive testing performance by taking advantage of his move from Dallas Skyline to South Oak Cliff, building on a modest sophomore season that saw him gain almost 900 yards on fewer than 100 carries by gaining nearly 2,000 yards on 216 carries and scoring 18 touchdowns as a junior. As a senior he was even more productive, gaining more than 2,500 yards and 31 touchdowns.

And though he's considered a pure running back despite standing shorter than 5'9, Stevenson also added 18 receptions for 348 yards and two more touchdowns as a junior.

On film, Stephenson has visible acceleration from a standstill and a low center of gravity aided by his height and willingness to get behind his pads. As a result, there's not much surface area to tackle him -- he doesn't project as a power back in college, but he should prove difficult to bring down for those reasons.

And despite the fact that he has elite elusiveness because of his stop-start ability, lateral jump cut ability and a spin move that may not translate to college, Stevenson is willing to press to hole hard when available and not waste any time moving laterally because he understands that his speed makes him nearly impossible to catch in the open field.

When a defender does have enough of an angle to catch Stevenson, he has the ability to fake the inside move to produce space down the sideline, a critical skill for a running back to turn long gains into touchdowns. He can do the same thing with his hesitation move.

So while Stevenson doesn't have the ideal build to break tackles at the next level, his speed and elusiveness should give him the opportunity to make some big plays.

Video highlights

Statistics

Rushing

Senior: 258 carries, 2,530 yards (9.8 YPC, 180.7 per game), 64-yard long, 12 hundred-yard rushing games, 28 TD

Junior: 217 carries, 2,020 yards (9.3 YPC, 155.4 per game), 60-yard long, 17 TD

Receiving

Senior: 13 rec, 134 yards (10.3 YPC, 9.6 per game), 2 TD

Junior: 16 rec, 307 yards (19.2 YPC, 23.6 per game), 2 TD