The Wisconsin Badgers announced on Wednesday that three recruits in the 2023 class have officially signed their national letter of intent: three-star guard John Blackwell, three-star forward Nolan Winter, and four-star forward Gus Yalden.
Speaking on Blackwell, head coach Greg Gard marveled about his defensive intensity, which will come in handy at his 6’4, 185-pound frame.
“We’re always focused on the present, but it’s always a great day for the future [as] our three signees all signed their national letter of intent this morning. [First off, there’s] John Blackwell out of Detroit. Excited about him. [He’s a] combo wing-guard who knows how to play. Obviously comes from very good bloodlines with his dad playing back in the day at Illinois. John can score [and has] terrific defensive instincts. Really liked his potential and I’m excited.”
John Blackwell is a Badger! ✍️ ️— Wisconsin Basketball (@BadgerMBB) November 9, 2022
Badger Nation, show love and welcome @_Johnblackwell1 to Wisconsin!
The three-star combo guard from Michigan brings a versatile skillset#OnWisconsin x #NSD22 pic.twitter.com/1kufSCOn8S
Gus Yalden, the highest-rated recruit of the bunch, could be in line to be Wisconsin’s guy for the future at center with his 6’9, 240-pound frame.
Gard praised Yalden’s IQ for his position, comparing him to the likes of other successful big men that Wisconsin has had in the past.
“Gus Yalden, better known as the Gus Bus, [is] a big body that’s really skilled like a lot of the guys we’ve had in the past. High basketball IQ for a big guy. Understands the game. He will continue to get better in terms of being ready for college basketball.”
Next stop for "Gus Bus"... Madison! ✍️— Wisconsin Basketball (@BadgerMBB) November 9, 2022
Badger Nation, help us officially welcome @gusbus2023 to Wisconsin!
The four-star big ranks among the top 100 recruits in the nation#OnWisconsin x #NSD22 pic.twitter.com/3Tf4nvfYfZ
The third recruit, Nolan Winter, comes from Lakeville North high school, which is where both current forward Tyler Wahl and former center Nate Reuvers came from.
Gard hinted at Winter and Yalden being the foundation of the frontcourt in the future, adding some much-needed depth after a guard-centric team in 2022.
“[The third recruit of our class is] Nolan Winter out of Lakeville, Minnesota. Close to 7 feet [and] really skilled. Excited about his potential and what he can do and what he can accomplish. [He’s] just scratching the surface of where he can be as he gets bigger and stronger. That combination of [Winter and Yalden] inside is a big foundation for us for the frontline in years to come.”
With the additions of Blackwell, Winter, and Yalden, Wisconsin has compiled the 33rd-best recruiting class for 2023, according to 247 sports.