While the Wisconsin Badgers are more or less finished with the 2017 recruiting class, they’re still tying up some loose ends in filling out their roster with the best players inside state borders.
This includes offensive lineman Blake Smithback, who decommitted from FCS program South Dakota State in favor of Wisconsin’s walk-on offer. He announced his decision on Friday via Twitter.
Smithback, who is listed at 6’3, 280 pounds on his Hudl account, is a typical mauler in the run game. Playing left tackle at Waunakee and blocking for Javian Dayne, the son of former Heisman winner Ron Dayne, he absolutely moves people in the run game and almost always finishes his block with his opponent pinned to the ground by their chest.
On Wisconsin! pic.twitter.com/1RWHUrPTAI— Blake Smithback (@blakesmithback) January 20, 2017
While Waunakee features a smash-mouth run game, it would occasionally pull Smithback, who showed nice agility and the ability to traverse the open field and latch onto linebackers at the second level. He shows the athleticism necessary to be proficient in pass protection, although Waunakee doesn’t pass a whole lot.
The lineman earned first-team Badger North conference and WFCA first-team all-state honors (second-team AP).
Smithback is the 11th known player to accept a walk-on offer from Wisconsin. He joins quarterback Danny Vanden Boom, running back Hunter Johnson, wide receiver/defensive back Sam DeLany, tight end/linebacker Ethan Cesarz, offensive lineman Josh Seltzner, offensive lineman Matt Henningsen, defensive lineman Michael Balistreri, linebacker Coy Wanner, linebacker Jake Collinsworth and kicker Collin Larsh.
Read more about Smithback’s commitment from BadgerBlitz.com’s Jon McNamara.