After the Wisconsin Badgers closed their scholarships for class of 2016 by gaining commitments from IMG Academy's D'Mitrik Trice and Aleem Ford on Saturday, Sunday gave the Badgers an additional prospect in Oak Park (Fenwick), Ill., swingman Michael Ballard, when he announced on Twitter that he was joining the basketball program.
The 6'5, 195-pound guard/forward was an integral piece for the Friars as they went 28-3 this season, averaging 10.3 points per game and hitting 39 percent of his shots from beyond the arc. The senior sharpshooting was even a bit of a down year for Ballard, as he hit 46 percent from beyond the arc as a junior. As you look for at least one marketable skill in a walk-on, Ballard definitely can bring that on-court value.
Ballard did receive Division I looks from the cream of the academic crop, as going into his senior season he got looks from Brown and Yale, among others.
Ballard also discussed his PWO status with BadgerBlitz.com.
"I have always been a Wisconsin fan and my high school coach mentioned how he thought walking on at Wisconsin would be great for me," Ballard told BadgerBlitz.com. "He was in contact with coach Howard (Moore) and after talking with him, he came out to some of our games this year to watch.
"Coach Howard said Wisconsin would like to have me as a walk-on, and a couple months after that I made my commitment."
Thrilled to announce I'll be continuing my athletic/academic career at the University of Wisconsin-Madison ⚪️ ⚪️ pic.twitter.com/iwjyOvNf6z— Michael Ballard (@mballard_22) April 25, 2016