Recruiting is the lifeblood of any major college athletics team, but following it closely as a fan can sometimes be difficult and can often be time consuming. We’ll try and condense all the recruiting news you can use into this bi-weekly (or more often since we are in Uncertain Times and there aren’t actual sports going on) post. It’ll include updates on current commits, including stats from their high school games, as well as news on players the Badgers are still pursuing. Let’s get down to business!
- 2021 3-star SF/PF Markus Ilver (Tallin, Estonia), who played last season at Massanutten Military Academy in Woodstock, Va., received an offer from Greg Gard and the Wisconsin Badgers on Thursday, according to Ilver’s Twitter account. Ilver has offers from George Mason, Nebraska, Utah, VCU, Xavier and a whole host of other mid-majors so far.
Blessed to receive an offer from Coach Gard and University of Wisconsin! pic.twitter.com/EkuO0LvWpI— Markus Ilver (@MarkusIlver) July 9, 2020
The native Estonian stands at 6-foot-8 and weighs around 200 pounds and could probably benefit from a year in a college weight lifting program. According to the 247Composite, Ilver is the No. 213 player in the 2021 class, the No. 40 power forward and the No. 6 player in Virginia. I couldn’t find any other information on Ilver transferring to Western Reserve Academy in Cleveland, but Rodger Bohn is a reporter for SLAM Magazine and a contributor at the Cleveland Plain Dealer so perhaps he has some sort of inside information.
6'8 2021 Estonian forward Markus Ilver has been offered by #Wisconsin and #VCU, per sources. Will be playing this upcoming season at @WRA_Hoops (OH) outside of #Cleveland and will immediately become one of best seniors in state. pic.twitter.com/yeXIKGiET2— Rodger Bohn (@rodgerbohn) July 9, 2020
Ilver has some bounce when you watch his highlights (there is a dunk early in the clip below that made me yelp). He also has a quick trigger from three. He’s basically your prototypical modern wing player that can get to the tin and rain threes. His game is quite appealing in that regard and also probably places him closer to the SF side of things than the PF side. He has a quick first step and uses slight pump fakes well to get past his man and get into the lane.
Ilver’s offer list is beatable right now and Wisconsin is one of the top two on his board so one would think the Badgers will be in contention for Ilver until the end. With this offer, as well as the offer to Milwaukee’s James Graham, it looks like the Badgers are ok with a 2021 player who isn’t a true shooting guard to fill out their class. I think that’s a great strategy by Gard and co. as basketball continues to shift to a more positionless game having tall, rangy, athletic wings that can shoot, slash and (hopefully) guard multiple positions is a luxury.