Sometimes there are dark days in recruiting. Sometimes the five-star center spurns your company for the exclusive company of others.
But that's not why I'm here. This is already being discussed. I'm a little afraid to see what's going on in the comments, but I'm here for another reason.
And the news is good. Mostly good, but for all the agita in regards to just how exactly Paul Chryst is going to recruit. I mean, the Badgers were clearly just going to stay in Wisconsin and only go after recruits that John Settle can get. CLEARLY. But here's the thing: The Badgers are going off and making moves. Sure, there's some seeming weirdness. Still, the Badgers are in good shape to get in the race for some good four-star prospects.
OLB Tyrone Hopper
6'4, 210 lbs.
Roswell, GA (Roswell)
So I called Hopper a sort of Nate Howard-level prospect, and what I say still stands. Hopper's a lanky (6'4, 210 pounds) three-star prospect out of Roswell, Ga., who has quality athleticism and is a tremendous threat on the blitz off the corner. Hopper has some pretty interesting offers to his name (North Carolina, Virginia Tech and Tennessee), and as you can see in his Hudl profile, he definitely has a chance to be a fast riser. That said, the Badgers are definitely in the race after Thursday's offer.
CB Sir Patrick Scott
6'1, 175 lbs.
Upper Marlboro, MD (Riverdale Baptist School)
Literally on name alone, this offer delights me. But the question then comes, can the knight from the house of coverage be a successful cornerback? His Hudl profile has a reported 4.64 40-time -- I mean, give the young man his proper due for not trying to call it a 4.51. While it's not a preclusion from success at higher levels than Big Ten football, it also explains why he would list Wake Forest as a favorite with offers from Iowa, Kentucky, Michigan State and Wisconsin.
If you look at his Hudl profile, you see that if the speed becomes a problem at cornerback, he does have enough physical talent to slot in at another position.
S/RB Craig Watts
6'0, 180 lbs.
St. Petersburg, Fla. (Gibbs)
This four-star safety out of St. Petersburg, Fla., already had offers from Alabama, Florida, Notre Dame, Michigan, Missouri and Ohio State before the Badgers offered him last Tuesday. Clearly, Watts is a good prospect, but you can probably avoid using any mental energy in hoping he comes here. It'd be cool if he did, but the Badgers have a lot of ground to cover.
ILB Brayden Stringer
6'2, 197 lbs.
Cypress, Texas (Cypress Ranch)
If you're looking for a prospect that could turn into the sort of linebacker sleeper the Badgers have been so good at finding in recent seasons, this currently unranked Cypress, Texas, linebacker might be the one. Wisconsin is his lone offer, and as he's currently listed as someone who's sub-200 pounds (6'2, 197 lbs.), you can see how he might have stood offerless.
Here's the thing: Stringer was a tackling machine as a junior. He averaged just over ten tackles a game, and if Stringer can hit like this before going into a college weight room, he's real interesting.
ILB Tristian Pipp: Lost in all that with Diamond Stone is the three-star in-state from Greendale, a prospect who named the Badgers a favorite on Tuesday before making a commitment to Western Michigan on Friday. Not Michigan State, not that dastardly land of Harbaugh. The P.J. Fleck, boat-rowing Western Michigan. I know what you're saying: this is the end and everybody panic! Don't. This was written decades ago.
Why? The Badgers don't have baseball. Pipp is good at baseball, and before Wisconsin became not a joke at college sports, the baseball program was on its last legs. To save money, Wisconsin cut baseball. As such, Western Michigan baseball coach Billy Gernon deserves credit for this one.
DE Josh King: The same weekend the Badgers had Pipp call them a leader also had a highly hyped prospect visit in King, a four-star defensive end out of Darien, Ill. King is a ready-made defensive end prospect coming into his senior year at 6'6, 250 pounds, and he has the athleticism that suggests he'll find success wherever he lands.
Will the Badgers find their way into the race? Maybe. King's top five is basically Iowa and the best of the Midwest. There won't be a "going to Vegas and wager on it" chance, but there's a chance.
OLB Tuf Borland: The four-star linebacker prospect from Bolingbrook, Ill., made a visit to Wisconsin on Friday and watched a Saturday practice. It still looks good for the Badgers as the process stands, though we're not at a point where we can consider there to be a commit alert. The plan is that Borland's going to visit Ohio State in April, with a decision coming in May or June ($). Right now, even the Ohio State recruiting experts think he'll be a Badger. But with OSU havin last ups, it's not home yet.
DE/OLB Marvin Terry: The Badgers might not be done at South Oak Cliff in Dallas. It went unnoticed, but when the Badgers offered X'Zavien Ausborne, they didn't offer him alone. At that point, Marvin Terry was a cornerback, but he grew into a defensive end/linebacker hybrid during his sophomore year. Long story short, it took. Terry used that speed to become someone special and a general presence in opponents' backfield.
I know what you're saying: he's a four-star prospect, is he interested in Wisconsin? Yes, and it doesn't look like it's cursory. either. Sure, he's got an offer from Oklahoma and high interest in Baylor. But between already having Jordan Stevenson on campus and a defense that would allow Terry to attack off the corner on a consistent basis and probably quickly, the Badgers have a real shot here.
RB Antonio Williams: Friday Night Football magazine is having a cover contest and Wisconsin's own North Stanly, N.C. commitment is in the race. In fact, as I type this, he's currently leading with two days to go, but he's not out of the woods. Cade Carney out of Mocksville, N.C., is in to usurp the cover. This is a fan voting process, and if you haven't voted, vote here. We can have a recruit so talented that he makes the cover of a preview magazine. That would have seemed unheard of two years ago.