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Early Signing Day: 2022 OT Joe Brunner signs his letter of intent

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The top in-state prospect signs with the Badgers.

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2022 Offensive Tackle Joe Brunner

Position Height Weight School 247 Composite Ranking
Position Height Weight School 247 Composite Ranking
Offensive tackle 6-foot-5 265 pounds Whitefish Bay (Wis.) High School 4-star; No. 8 OT

The Badgers have a lost a couple of the top in-state recruits in the 2022 class (Billy Schrauth to Notre Dame and Jerry Cross to Penn State), but rest assured, the best offensive lineman in the state is staying home.

Brunner, whose older brother plays defensive end for the Badgers, is an imposing figure at offensive tackle for Whitefish Bay High School. Listed by recruiting sites at either 6-foot-6 or 6-foot-7 and north of 300 pounds, Brunner’s size and nastiness is evident on his film. While his acclimation to run blocking will be expedited due to his physicality, his ability to push for early playing time will be dictated by his ability to pick up pass protection schemes and technique.

Brunner, who was an All-State performer on both the offensive and defensive lines as a senior, will stay on the offensive side for Wisconsin. However, it’s yet to be seen whether he stays at tackle, or kicks inside to guard for the Badgers.

The influx of highly rated recruits over the past couple of seasons has created some major competition at tackle; offensive line coach Joe Rudolph has always preached “getting your best five on the field”, so his potential flexibility will pay dividends for his potential playing time early.

Rankings

247 Composite: 4 stars; grade: .9682; No. 75 player in the nation; No. 8 OT; No. 1 WI

247 Sports: 4 stars; grade: 94; No. 131 overall; No. 14 OT; No. 1 WI

Rivals: 4 stars; 5.9 rating; No. 72 player in the nation; No. 9 Offensive Tackle; No. 1 WI

ESPN: 4 stars; Grade: 86; No. 7 Offensive Tackle; No. 7 Regional; No. 1 WI

Verbally committed on June 29, 2021

Brunner had nearly 20 offers to choose from including Ohio State and Notre Dame, who were most likely the other two schools in his top-three. Florida State, Iowa, LSU, Michigan, Nebraska, Oregon, Penn State, Tennessee and others also offered Brunner a spot on their team.

Player bio (courtesy of UW Athletic Department)

  • Four–star recruit by Rivals, 247Sports and ESPN
  • Named first–team all–state by WFCA on both offensive and defensive line as a senior
  • Won the Joe Thomas Award as the top OL in Wisconsin as a senior
  • First–team all–state selection by WFCA as a junior
  • Three–time first–team all–conference selection
  • Brother, Tommy, is a defensive end for the Badgers