With all the buzz about the class of 2019 for the Wisconsin Badgers, there has also been recent activity regarding another staple of the football program—its walk-on tradition.
In the past week, at least four players from inside the state of Wisconsin have announced that they have received preferred walk-on opportunities from the UW coaching staff. They could join Jim Leonhard, Joe Schobert, Jared Abbrederis and other former Badger walk-ons. Among them are a few recruits from well-known schools inside the state with a precedent already set of players coming to play football at UW.
Living just a stone’s throw from Madison in Waunakee, Ryan was part of a team that captured the WIAA Division 2 state championship last year. According to WisSports.net, he recorded 69 tackles, 26 for loss, and 16 sacks.
Rivals notes Ryan holds 14 offers, including from MAC programs Ball State, Buffalo, Eastern Michigan, and Northern Illinois.
Other prominent former Waunakee standouts who came to Wisconsin include Leo Musso, Derek Straus, Austin Maly, Tyler Mais, Jack Russell, Blake Smithback, and 2018 signee Nate Carter.
As noted by BadgerBlitz.com’s Jon McNamara, the Sussex, Wis. (Hamilton) prospect missed most of his junior year. According to WisSports.Net, Kollath rushed for 140 yards with four touchdowns while catching eight passes for 87 yards.
At the WFCA Combine earlier this year, however, Kollath impressed. With measurables of 6’2 and over 227 pounds, he ran a 4.50-second 40-yard dash, 7.36-second L-drill, and 4.34-second shuttle run. He also bench-pressed 185 pounds 17 times. In McNamara’s article, it is noted he ran a 4.45-second 40 at Wisconsin’s camp earlier this month.
Blessed to receive a PWO from the University of Wisconsin Madison! pic.twitter.com/odBGSQUd4v— Jackson Kollath (@KollathJackson) June 22, 2018
The name Southern Door might sound familiar to some Badgers fans. That’s because the high school in northeastern Wisconsin has churned out former Badgers like Bob Adamov and Al and Ben Johnson. Adamov was a former walk-on who turned into a team captain on the 1998 Wisconsin squad that won the first of two consecutive Rose Bowls.
LeCaptain visited Wisconsin in the spring and camped at UW earlier this month. He also recently camped at South Dakota State. Rivals reports offers from South Dakota, East-Central University (where Al Johnson is currently head coach), and Minnesota-Duluth.
According to WisSports.net, LeCaptain rushed for 1,176 yards on 4.9 yards per carry with 17 touchdowns while adding 23 receptions for 265 yards and four receiving scores during his junior year. Defensively, the athlete recorded 62 tackles, six for loss, with two sacks.