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Wisconsin football recruiting: 4-star offensive lineman Joe Brunner commits to UW

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UW stays on their red-hot roll in June as they snap up the top prospect in the state for 2022.

@BadgerFootball; UW Athletics Communications

The Badgers keep their recruiting hot streak rolling after four-star, in-state offensive lineman Joe Brunner announced his commitment to Wisconsin on Tuesday afternoon. The 6-foot-6, 300-pound offensive lineman from Whitefish Bay is the number one ranked recruit in the state, the No. 55 ranked overall in the country according to 247Sports and the seventh best offensive tackle prospect.

Brunner’s other finalists were apparently Notre Dame and Ohio State. He also holds offers from most other college football powerhouses like LSU, Florida State, Miami (Fla.), Michigan, Oregon, Penn State, Iowa and Tennessee.

Although all the other big fish began circling in his recruitment, Brunner was always considered a Wisconsin lean by most leading recruiting experts.

Brunner is the ninth recruit who committed to Wisconsin, and is the eighth this month in what might go down in recent history as one of UW’s hottest recruiting streak ever. The All-American Bowl prospect visited the campus the first weekend of June — pretty much as soon as the dead period ended and recruits were allowed back on campus — and was joined by a huge list of other prospects including fellow in-state 4-star recruits Carson Hinzman, Isaac Hamm and Billy Schrauth.

Those three may be the next prospects to keep an eye out on for committing to Wisconsin. Hinzman and Hamm were also long-time leans to pick the Badgers. Schrauth was thought to be heading to Notre Dame for most of his recruitment, but most of the recent buzz since that June visit has been pointing towards the Badgers.

Brunner — as his rankings would suggest — is a beast of an offensive lineman and his tape shows him mostly just mauling defenders. That’s exactly the type of guy Wisconsin is known for.

247Sports’ national recruiting analyst Allen Trieu — who is much better at reading film than I — had this to say in his scouting report from May 2021:

“Tough, rugged offensive lineman who finishes his blocks. Gets off the ball well at his size and also shows some twitch. Runs well and gets downfield to make blocks easily. Plays with good balance and keeps his feet when drive blocking. We do not currently have verified height and length on him, but looks like a right tackle at the moment. Run blocking is more his forte right now. Will need additional reps and technical polishing in pass protection. Also has years of basketball experience. The way he plays and his lineman mentality should make him a safe bet to be a successful college lineman who can be a multi-year starter.”

Sounds pretty good to me! His prediction of a potential second day draft prospect is cool too, but that’s also much further down the line.

Either way, his commitment adds a huge piece to Wisconsin and could make more dominoes fall, as there is that buzz more of the in-state kids are looking to commit around the same time. *insert big eye emojis*