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B5Q Blogopean Union: the early signing period brought many new Badgers into the fold

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Basketball, hockey, wrestling, volleyball, softball, oh my! Recruiting updates from many of these sports and more!

NCAA Football: Utah State at Wisconsin Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning! This is going to be a daily(ish) post that discusses the goings on of the rest of the Big Ten Conference, and the country as needed. Much like the European Union, the Big Ten is a loosely confederated group of entities that sometimes have the same goals (like free movement of people between countries or not winning national titles in football or basketball) and sometimes accept new members that they later regret (Estonia or Rutgers).

We hope that you will use this post to comment on things happening around the conference and also as a sort of daily open thread to discuss breaking news or argue about Spotted Cow (which we NO LONGER DO).

  • Seniors Grace Bowlby and Brette Pettet will serve as Wisconsin women’s hockey team co-captains for the 2020-21 season and senior Caitlin Schneider and junior Britta Curl are set to serve as alternate captains.

“This is a unique year,” head coach Mark Johnson said. “Compared to any other year within our program, this is going to be the most challenging year and our leadership group is going to be crucial. They are going to be relied on very heavily to keep people’s emotions, energy and spirit at a high level. I’m excited with who our team has chosen.”

  • The Wisconsin men’s basketball annual Red & White Scrimmage will be virtual this year with a free live stream this Saturday at 4:30 p.m. (CT). This year’s Red & White Scrimmage live stream will also be simulcast for free on YouTube at youtube.com/wisconsinbadgers and on Facebook.com/WisconsinBadgers.

Tune in on the “Badgers Live” interactive platform which will feature trivia, predictive games, fan polls and more. The fan to earn the most points playing along on Badgers Live will win a free autographed ball from head coach Greg Gard. The platform will feature live commentary from Matt Lepay and Mike Lucas, interviews with members of the team and more. It’s free and easy to participate, just visit UWBadgers.com/Live to play along!

  • ICYMI on Wednesday, UW announced that Wisconsin men’s and women’s basketball and men’s and women’s hockey home games will be played this season without fans in the stands for an indefinite period of time.
  • Greg Gard mentioned on his Zoom availability Wednesday evening that he wasn’t sure if the men’s Big Ten schedule would be out this week, but the women’s just might!
  • We will have separate stories on the volleyball and women’s basketball recruiting classes in the coming days, but here is some info on early signing day for the other Wisconsin sports.
  • As I’ve admitted on many occasions around here, I don’t know much about college wrestling. There are a couple of things I do know however, and one of them is that getting the No. 1 kid in the country is good.

Just read this, emphasis mine: “The son of Tim and Anika Amos, he is a three-time West Virginia state champion, who did not surrender a takedown, near fall or reversal during his career for Parkersburg South High School. The top-ranked wrestler in the country at 220 pounds and the top-ranked wrestler pound-for-pound, Amos will join the Badgers this fall.

Amos, who did not wrestle because of injury as a freshman, set school records for wins in an undefeated season, recording 48 victories twice; most wins in three seasons with 142; highest winning percentage with 100 percent; and most consecutive wins with 142. He was named Outstanding Wrestler at the state tournament twice and is a two-time recipient of the Dutton Award, presented to West Virginia’s Outstanding Wrestler for all classes. He also received the Hercules Award, presented for the most pins in the least amount of time.”

Also, the Badgers signed two kids from New Jersey (a wrestling hotbed) and one from Indiana (a state that I know nothing about in terms of high school wrestling).

  • The softball team signed five new players to the squad on Wednesday: Ellie Hubbard, Brooke Kuffel, Grace O’Brien, Kate Linkletter and Larissa Ortiz.

Linkletter is the crown jewel of the class. She ranks among On-Deck Softball (four-star), No. 15 in Fast Pitch Network’s Best Third Basemen in the country, and Extra Inning Softball’s Top 100 Recruits both in 2019 (No. 91) and 2020 (No.90).

  • I won’t even try to discuss the men’s hockey recruiting situation as Todd Milewski at the Wisconsin State Journal is all over it.
  • Things are going great for college basketball already. Gard mentioned this game being postponed while talking to the media about the challenges of setting up a non-conference schedule this year.
  • Here’s the Big Ten women’s preseason poll from the coaches and the media. The Badgers should be better this year but they are still a couple of years away from breaking into the upper echelon of the conference.

“This is a poorly coached, undisciplined football team that seems like it is having trouble coming to grips with that. There are so many small-detail things they fail to execute at a basic level. That is entirely on the man at the top of the pyramid.”

There is some serious angst in Ann Arbor and if Jim Harbaugh and the boys suffer a third straight loss (two of which were at home) the wheels might come off completely.