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National Signing Day 2017: OLB Andrew Van Ginkel begins Wisconsin career as early enrollee

A well-traveled defender comes to the Badgers with a chance to contribute early on.

Andrew Van Ginkel

Class of 2017 OLB Andrew Van Ginkel

Class Position Ht Wt (lbs) School Composite Rank
Class Position Ht Wt (lbs) School Composite Rank
2017 OLB 6-4 240 Iowa Western C.C. Three-star, No. 2 WDE

Andrew Van Ginkel, who has a surname ripe for fun nicknames, will be joining the Wisconsin Badgers as an early enrollee for 2017.

The well-traveled Van Ginkel comes to Madison via Iowa Western Community College, after a stop in 2015 at South Dakota, and played his high school ball in Rock Valley, Iowa. He has two years remaining of eligibility and could potentially contribute right away for the Badgers. There are reports of his 40 time that will leave you salivating to see him lined up on the outside in T.J. Watt/Vince Biegel’s old position.

He was one of seven Badgers to enter the program as a midyear enrollee.


247Sports (composite): Three stars; Grade: 0.8777; No. 24 JUCO; No. 2 WDE; No. 1 Iowa JUCO

247Sports: Three stars; Grade: 89; No. 20 JUCO; No. 2 WDE; No. 1 Iowa JUCO

ESPN: Four stars; Grade: 80; No. 6 weak-side defensive end; No. 35 ESPN JC50

Rivals: Four stars; No. 12 JUCO

Scout: Three stars; No. 36 JUCO

Verbally committed Nov. 1, 2016; Signed NLI and enrolled Jan. 11, 2017

Van Ginkel was Wisconsin's 15th commitment for 2017.

While at South Dakota, Van Ginkel finished third in the voting for FCS National Freshman of the Year and started all 11 games. He recorded 56 tackles, 18 for a loss, and sacked the quarterback nine times. He also forced two fumbles, recovered three others and blocked a field goal.

In his one year at Iowa Western, Van Ginkel battled through a couple of injuries to collect 50 tackles (18 solo), 3.5 sacks, one interception and one fumble recovery.

In high school, he mostly played defensive back and quarterback his senior year, recording 162 tackles, six picks and six fumble recoveries. His senior-year offensive stats showed him amassing nearly 3,000 yards of total offense for the Boyden-Hill/Rock Valley Nighthawks.

B5Q’s Andrew Rosin wrote in his article about Van Ginkel committing:

The Iowa Western official athletic website and all three major recruiting websites list him as a defensive end, though’s Jon McNamara reported the former South Dakota product is expected to play outside linebacker for the Badgers.

Van Ginkel held offers from Louisville, Iowa, Nebraska, Iowa State, Kansas State, Pitt, West Virginia and Minnesota, among others. Even Alabama deigned to come north and take a look, although the Crimson Tide didn’t end up offering.


High school: First-team All-State defensive back (!!!) in Iowa

FCS: 2015 Missouri Valley Conference Freshman of the Year; first-team All-MVFC; named to MVFC all-Newcomer Team; in 2014, his redshirt year, he was twice named Defensive Scout Team Player of the Week

Video highlights

Bio (courtesy

At Iowa Western
2016: Played in 11 games … logged 50 tackles, including 13.0 TFLs and 3.5 sacks … also recorded an interception and a fumble recovery

At South Dakota
2015: Started all 11 games at defensive end … first-team All-Missouri Valley Football Conference … finished third in voting for STATS FCS National Freshman of the Year, highest among defensive players … Missouri Valley Football Conference Freshman of the Year ... named to MVFC All-Newcomer team … led conference and ranked 10th nationally at 1.7 tackles for loss per game … finished season with 18.5 TFLs and 9.0 sacks ... recorded 56 total tackles, 3 fumble recoveries, 2 forced fumbles and 2 pass breakups

2014: Redshirt season … two-time defensive scout team player of the week

High School: First-team all-state selection at defensive back as a senior … selected for Iowa Shrine Bowl all-star game … finished career for Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley with 176 total tackles, 21.5 TFLs, 10 interceptions and 10 fumble recoveries … team went 32-4 during his three varsity seasons … recorded 95 tackles, including 14.5 for loss, as a senior … also played quarterback as a senior, throwing for 1,466 yards and 17 touchdowns while also rushing for 1,413 yards and 15 TDs ... five-time state qualifier in track, including bids in long jump and 4x100 and 4x200 relays as a senior … also lettered in basketball … coach was Cory Brandt

Personal: Parents are Henry and Karen Van Ginkel … brother, Kyle, plays linebacker at Northwestern (Iowa) College … brother, Nate, played football at Northwestern (Iowa) College from 2010-13