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Recruiting

Written by Joe Lewis | 24 August 2016

It is always hard to immediately judge a recruiting class, but by the standards of 2014 the first full class of the Gary Anderson era appeared to be all set to be one of the best ever in Wisconsin Badgers history.

UW finished as the No. 33 ranked class in the country and the No. 5 class in the Big Ten in large part thanks to landing big prospects like Jaden Gault, D.J. Gillins and George Panos. There was even a foray in to the state of Georgia and it appeared momentum was on the side of things changing for the Badgers on the recruiting trail.

But, all of those stories and hopes seem to have been misguided as we enter the third season past this class coming to Wisconsin.

Some of the class is already gone, with the leader of the group, Jaden Gault never playing a down in the Cardinal and White thanks to severe depression issues that forced him off the field (we hear he's tearing up the golf courses around Wisconsin these days as well as attending school at UW).

Quarterback D.J. Gillins was expected to be the transitional quarterback to Andersen's desired dual-threat look. Instead, Anderson left and Gillins' skill set wasn't exactly needed in Paul Chryst's return to a pro-style offense.

He has since landed at Pearl River Community College in the hopes of returning to FBS football next season.

Those highly-hyped Georgia boys...not so highly thought of today, and it's being reflected in the current online college football odds.

Krenwick Sanders? Couldn't even make the 105 of the 2016 roster and has announced his plans to transfer.

Jeremey Patterson? Struggling to make the two-deep three years in to his career at UW and was passed over by a freshman last season on the depth chart and it may be happening again with Garrett Rand in 2016.

Hell, three players never even made it on to campus for a single fall as 4-star athlete Darien Watkins struggled with some issues off the field, Chris Jones couldn't make it academically and has transferred twice since. There was also fullback Ula Tolutau, who went on a Morman mission and was not part of the Badgers plans once Chryst got to UW.

In total, this group has seen five players transfer and another player never make it to UW thanks to a conviction on sexual assault chargers (Dominic Cizauskas) in addition to those who never made it on campus at all or never played in a game.

But, it is further down the 2014 class where you really begin to see the talent evaluation of Andersen and staff paying off.

UW has benefited from the likes of T.J. Edwards, Micah Kapoi, Jacob Maxwell, Michael Deiter and Beau Benzschawel on the offensive line. This class also includes key defensive contributors like Derrick Tindal (starting cornerback in 2016), D'Cota Dixon (likely starting safety), Connor Sheehy (starting defensive end) and Billy Hirschfeld.

But, injuries have also taken its toll on this class, with George Panos continuously hurt and unable to get in to the rotation because of it.

Classes are often judged by the top talent production, as much as contributions from those at the bottom of the rankings. In that respect, the Badgers struck out big time as just two of the top six ranked players are even contributors to this team.

Those players, Sheehy and running back Taiwan Deal could be key pieces to UW's puzzle in 2016, but will likely be anchors in 2017 and beyond.

Even kicker Rafael Gaglianone appears to have been a good pick up, as he was one of the better kickers as a freshman and after struggling in 2015 has rededicated himself to sliming down and hitting balls between the uprights on a consistent basis once again.

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Written by Shea Harris | 07 March 2011

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Written by Shea Harris | 02 March 2011

SOPHOMORE highlights of 2012 Texas commit Cayleb Jones. I'll be posting highlight videos of commitments from time to time. Enjoy.

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Written by Shea Harris | 28 February 2011

caylebjonesAustin High's Cayleb Jones (#4).Another junior day in the can, another round of commitments for the Texas Longhorns. Let’s take a look at the five new commits (Bryson Echols committed on Friday before the junior day, you can read about it here).

Cayleb Jones

The biggest name in the new group of commitments is Austin High wideout Cayleb Jones, a wide receiver who was among the most coveted at his position in the nation. The 6’3” 198 pounder has dominated Central Texas competition and can do it all. The only thing he seems to lack at this point is top end speed, but his hands and body control when going up to snatch a ball out of the air are unparalleled.

Peter Jinkens

In linebacker Peter Jinkens the Longhorns now have commitments from the top two recruits from Dallas Skyline. At 6’1,” 208, Jinkens is an excellent athlete with a lot of upside. He looks raw at this point at linebacker (he’s been very good at running back as well) but all the tools are there to be a great one. no comments

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Written by Shea Harris | 26 February 2011

BRYSONECHOLS_150_9_14

DeSoto Cornerback Bryson Echols committed to Texas on Friday evening, giving them eight total commitments going into tomorrow’s second junior day. Echols visited Austin a day early, and while head coach Mack Brown extended him an offer, he didn’t commit on the spot. He instead decided to talk things over with his family before committing.

The discussion was obviously a short one as he made his pledge several hours later.

The 5-10, 175-pound Echols is one of the state's few top cornerback prospects that plays mainly on the defensive side of the ball in high school, which means he may be able to make a quicker transition to college ball than some. Echols flashed some serious playmaking ability as a junior with five interceptions, returning two for touchdowns, and blocking two kicks. no comments

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