National Signing Day’s early signing period is finally upon us, and for those of you that follow recruiting religiously like we do here at B5Q, this day is like an early Christmas present for the Wisconsin Badgers. Lots of excitement surrounds each program as players from all over the country make their decision on where they will spend their next three-to-four years. While excitement always runs high, this year has been especially high for Wisconsin as many are calling the 2019 class one of the program’s best ever.
Head coach Paul Chryst discussed this year’s signees with the Big Ten Network this morning. Here are some of the highlights.
When discussing the 2019 class, the immediate eyes go to Logan Brown. The five-star offensive tackle has been a Wisconsin commit since November of 2017. Brown is the highest rated prospect to join the Badgers since Josh Ogelsby. When Chryst was asked about the highly-coveted lineman, he pointed out the recruiting process and who he is as a player:
“I think that always starts this process but what’s got us excited about Logan is who he is. We’ve been fortunate. We got to know Logan early, and he committed a couple of years ago* and so you appreciate that. I think our class had that. We had a number of really early committed kids and then a nice balance. We had some that were this year kind of in the fall and a couple near the end, but Logan’s a heck of a player. Better than that though, he’s an unbelievable person and [we] couldn’t be more excited”.
*note: Brown committed last November after the win against Michigan
It’s a New beginning ⚪️ #WEW1LL9 pic.twitter.com/qdV9jK2BcZ— Logan Brown (@loganbrown53) December 19, 2018
BTN’s Mike Hall noted the fact that many of the 2019 recruits were out-of-state kids. In fact, the six top-rated players of this year’s class are from outside the Badger State. When asked what this says about the Wisconsin football program as a whole, Chryst reiterated that these recruits picked Wisconsin for all the right reasons:
“I think in all this recruiting, it comes down to a fit. We certainly are excited and feel that all the kids that signed today are a great fit here, and likewise, they think that Wisconsin is the best fit for them. So that’s what makes this class feel so good is that it’s guys that have been really thorough in the recruiting process and yet I think that came together. Already it’s a close class. A number of them have done a good job of just staying in touch with each other, so we’re excited about this class for a number of reasons.”
When talking about fit, you have to talk about four-star quarterback Graham Mertz, who despite many blue blood programs pursuing, stuck with Wisconsin and signed earlier this morning. When asked about how Mertz fit into Wisconsin, Chryst responded:
“We think that Graham does a ton of things that can fit right into what we’re doing, and possibly add a little bit more to it. I was talking about how this class is connected. Graham kind shows a lot of the qualities of a really good quarterback and that he is the leader of this class in many ways. Certainly a great personality and the other committed kids have gotten to know him and he’s obviously very talented. Love the way that he throws. He can throw every type of ball, but I think who he is, is again why we’re really thrilled to have Graham join us.”
Graham Mertz— Wisconsin Football (@BadgerFootball) December 19, 2018
Overland Park, KS
Check out the film on Graham#NSD19 // #OnWisconsin pic.twitter.com/B0rvuRySod
Chryst then talked about the linebackers group. When asked about the linebackers Wisconsin was bringing in, Chryst noted that this was a good group that fits what they were doing defensively. “Were excited about that group.” Chryst added.
“It’s a group that’s active and also a group that really can play really a number of different linebacker spots. Maema as you watch his tape, he’s an inside ‘backer that flies around. Spencer Lytle and Skyler [Meyers] we are fired up about them. And we do think that they have become a great fit for our defense. Can help on special teams, and so we’re excited about that group.”
It’s clear that overall, the defining word for Chryst is excitement. On paper this is the best class he has had yet, and there are many players that could be a huge impact for the Badgers in the near future. It is a close-knit class that could be just what Wisconsin Football needed to take the next step in the growth as a program. The next step will be putting up on the field, but for now a high amount of excitement is justified for the class of 2019.