This is it: the first big recruiting weekend for the first full season of the Paul Chryst era.
You're going to see plenty of prospects coming and at least one potential commit coming from the visitors list, but first we're going to discuss the new offers. While these might not be the 'star' quality of the visitors, these are unforgettable names.
ATH Malik Harrison
6'3, 205 lbs.
Columbus, OH (Walnut Ridge)
Blessed to receive my 9th offer from Wisconsin ⚪️— Leek (@Leek_8) April 21, 2015
As it stands, the offer list is winnable (Illinois, Kentucky and Pittsburgh are his other best offers) for the three-star prospect. The Badgers have been able to get good players out of Walnut Ridge like Austin Traylor and Rob Wheelwright, and the 6'3 Harrison would definitely be a quality pick-up.
WR Kofi Boateng
6'1, 177 lbs.
Arlington, Tex. (Lamar)
Whoever gets the commit in the three-star Boateng sweepstakes looks like they're going to get a sleeper. The dude has some real strong hands. The offer sheet for Boateng is real interesting. Arizona State, Iowa, Kansas State, Minnesota, North Carolina, Ole Miss and Washington already offered, but there is one thing that will likely give an enterprising team a window to get a commitment: his Hudl profile shows a SPARQ-verified 4.67 40-time.
Does he get to top speed quickly? Absolutely, but it's a speed that won't likely get that next tier of offers without a big senior year. Can he do it? Absolutely. For schools that don't offer, their loss might be the Badgers' gain.
CB Obi Eboh
6'1.5, 185 lbs.
Southlake, Texas (Southlake Carroll)
Just received an offer from the University of Wisconsin! #GoBadgers— Obi Eboh (@Obi_Eboh3) April 22, 2015
Eboh is the tailor-made tall, physical cornerback. He bumps, he runs, he hits hard. He might be a little higher-upside at safety than cornerback, but that doesn't mean he's not going to be a player. He's got a pretty strong offer list (Arizona State, Duke, Iowa, Mississippi State, Missouri, Nebraska, Ole Miss and Washington are his best non-Wisconsin offers). If the Badgers charge, they can make a move here. A SPARQ-verified 4.57 40-yard dash time leaves a window for them.
WR Neru N'Shaka
5'10, 180 lbs.
One of the few names better than Jango Glackin has a highlight reel of pure, badass, American speed. It's also why the Badgers made an offer to the Virginia commit. Yes, the Badgers have made a move on a Chris Beatty prospect, if you're looking for some non-"his name is Neru N'Shaka" reason to root for the Badgers to get the win. He calls himself 75 percent committed to Virginia and with their offer, the Badgers might open that window further.
Between the not-so-historical value Badgers fans have given the spring game and a sub-50 degrees and rainy forecast where the wind might threaten 20 miles per hour, Saturday is not going to be peak Camp Randall. That said, there's a big list of visitors coming for the weekend.
OT Ben Bredeson: 247Sports noted the top Wisconsin target would attend Saturday's glorified scrimmage ($). The worry is Bredeson's wanting to make a decision in the fall potentially leading to him using his five official visits elsewhere. Why? Because this spring game visit makes six unofficial visits for this top-30 prospect from Hartland, Wis. He knows a lot about Wisconsin. I'm not going to say this is a disaster and the end and oh my god everybody jump off a cliff, but truth be told, I'm not going to hold my breath for a commitment on Saturday.
OT Cole Van Lanen: Now the Green Bay, Wis., four-star offensive line prospect is looking like he might be ready to make a call for the Badgers. For one, he made an unofficial visit last week (and is coming back Saturday). For two, other Wisconsin players are making some polite pressuring overtures to Van Lanen.
It's time for @colevanlanen5 to commit to UDUB— Alec Ingold (@ingynation) April 22, 2015
Not to say that Twitter stalking is accurate. He's still getting offers from the cream of the Big Ten conference -- but that said, if Van Lanen wasn't at the very least giving the Badgers due dilligence, he wouldn't be favoriting these tweets. The Badgers lead here, and there's a real good chance for the Badgers to make this a close.
OT Joshua Lugg: It's early in the recruitment process for the 2017 four-star offensive tackle from Wexford, Pa., but it's safe to say that on the strength of Chryst's staff offering twice, Lugg is absolutely a top target. Lugg left on Thursday for this unofficial visit. My gut isn't saying put him on commit alert, but the Badgers can make a big move here.
G Kayden Lyles: The Lyles brothers, both Kare' and Kayden, are coming back for the spring game.
Can't wait to be back up in Madison for the spring game Saturday! #OnWisconsin ⚪️— Karé Lyles (@klyles9) April 22, 2015
Obviously, it goes without saying that this is going to help because Kare' is a firm commitment and will be a good ambassador for the weekend. As for his four-star, 2017 prospect brother, the familial bond definitely has given the Badgers a new lease in the recruiting battle. I'm not going to call this a commit alert either, but this will definitely help the Badgers' chances for the offensive lineman.
WR AJ Taylor: The four-star wide receiver recruit out of Kansas City coming back to Madison is always a heck of a deal. I mean, we're still in the "prospect has to pay his own way to visit" stage of the process and it's not exactly a hop, skip and a jump to get from the Show Me State to Madison. Again, it's still early in the process for me to say, "AJ Taylor will commit to the Badgers and I will stake my reputation on it," but you remember that part where I said the Badgers might be leading after the offer was sent to Taylor? The interest is most definitely mutual.
OT Sam Heckel: While the Badgers have been making overtures to offensive line prospects in Virginia, Sam Heckel's becoming the toast of the Ivy League. The three-star Waukesha, Wis., prospect is coming to Madison to do the unofficial visit thing again. It's one of those things where if the Badgers offer, he would probably commit. Then again, the Badgers are looking for three offensive line prospects, and they're in good spots for more highly regarded players.
ILB Brayden Stringer: Now here's an interesting case. Stringer is a quality inside linebacker prospect from Cypress, Texas, and he's coming a long way to get here. He's definitely interested, but Texas Tech has offered and Texas A&M is sniffing around. That might cause hesitation.
Then, there's the news the Glackin family is going to be in Madison next weekend. All the momentum is going the Badgers' way for the Lebanon, Ohio (IMG Academy), linebacker, and add in the fact that the momentum is coming for rising Carmel, Ind., three-star linebacker Noah Burks, linebacker spots could fill up quickly. Stringer might have to commit quickly to reserve a spot.
So while it's not "all good" on the recruiting front, you could see the Badgers getting a commit or two from this weekend. Also, there are some really cool names being offered. The class of 2016 is going to be deeper, and potentially more star-filled than it is today.
We can build on this.