During the summer doldrums of sports news, many college football fans are starved for news and information regarding their favorite teams.
With that in mind, we at B5Q have decided to take a more detailed look at each walk-on contributor and scholarship player on the Wisconsin Badgers football roster for 2020 in a running feature, our 2020 returnee profiles.
Each weekday we will breakdown one player on the football roster to look back at their recruiting process, their career as a Badger to this juncture and lastly preview their potential contribution to the team in 2020 and beyond.
Today we turn our attention back to the secondary, and John Torchio.
Name: John Torchio
2020 eligibility: redshirt sophomore
Recruiting info out of HS: 247Sports 3-star, No. 142 athlete, Moraga, Calif.
2018 recruitment: Despite scholarship opportunities on the table at multiple FBS programs, John Torchio chose to bet on himself and walk-on at Wisconsin late in the recruiting process.
A former state title winning high school quarterback, Torchio had scholarship offers from in-state Cal, Air Force, Army, Rice, San Jose State and multiple Ivy League schools. After taking an official visit to nearby Cal in January of 2018, Torchio surprised many by opting to walk-on across the country with the Badgers a month later.
Career statistics: eight games played, one start, three tackles, one interception, three pass breakups.
2019 statistics: eight games played, one start, three tackles, one interception, two pass breakups.
Player overview: A 6-foot-1, 205 pound safety, Torchio has good size and athleticism for the position. After a redshirt year in 2018 he saw extended playing time during his second season on campus, including one start.
After the ejections of Eric Burrell and Reggie Pearson against Michigan, the California product played the better part of the second half and came away with an interception. He proceeded to start the first half of the Northwestern game while the normal starting duo of Burrell and Pearson sat due to their targeting penalties from the week prior.
Overall Torchio played well in the eight games he saw the field, and appears to be a walk-on contributor that could see greater usage down the road.
Best case scenario for 2020: With so much returning talent ahead of him at the safety position, Torchio might not surpass a lot of the statistics he accrued in 2019, but he should still see the field for the Badgers. In an ideal world Torchio sees more time on multiple special team units in 2020, and continues to play well when called upon. With Madison Cone, Burrell, and Collin Wilder all slated to graduate after the season Torchio could parlay another strong season as a reserve into a spot in the two-deep as a junior in 2021.
Likely role on team in 2020: In the past few recruiting cycles Wisconsin has not been very active within safety recruiting despite three seniors at the position this year. A big reason for that has been the emergence of Torchio who has gained the confidence of his teammates and the staff. While he will probably not be in the two-deep at safety in 2020, he is definitely a talented player to monitor in the coming seasons.