Back through to the days when his parents would cart him to Madison, and take part in the pregame, game and postgame festivities. His love of Wisconsin football has blown much harder into Saturday’s, now.
The junior tight end has followed the mold set before him by many UW tight ends, one in particular. Should the pace continue, there’s no reason to believe he won’t fit right into the same shoes of those TE’s who have graduated into Sunday afternoon football.
Probably more-so at his middle linebacker spot, but just as equally at times on the offensive side of the football, the college junior collected a lot of attention through his prep career. He was a three-sport athlete at Merrill High School before deciding to concentrate on football and follow in his father’s footsteps at Wisconsin.
Dave Arneson played for Wisconsin in the early 1980’s. In 1982, he was part of the Badger team that won the Independence Bowl championship, the first-ever bowl win in Wisconsin history.
Sam is used most generally as a blocking tight end.
Alongside current teammate Jacob Pedersen (Menomonie, Mich.), they’ve developed into one of the best 1-2 offensive punches in the Big Ten, offering up that mix of speed, power and precision that makes UW’s offense click.
He’s collected 5 receptions for 56 yards and a touchdown so far this season. And while his statistics on the offensive side of the football haven’t yet equaled what Arneson is capable of, there is no reason to believe he won’t be a big part of the offense through his tenure at Wisconsin.
BADGERS TE’S IN THE PROS
Lance Kendricks, St. Louis Rams - So far this season, his third full season in the NFL, the Milwaukee King graduate has developed into a very nice compliment for a struggling St. Louis offense. To date in three seasons, he’s collected 23 receptions for 173 yards and three scores.
Travis Beckum, New York Giants - The Oak Creek High School graduate has missed most of this season after having knee surgery. He’s in his fourth season and has three career touchdowns to go along with 26 grabs and 264 yards.
Garrett Graham and Owen Daniels, Houston Texans - Graham played sparingly in his first two seasons, but he has become a more important part of the Texans’ offense in his third year, mainly due to injury problems with Daniels. In his last three games, he has 13 catches and three touchdowns. Daniels, in his seventh season, has been the poster child for Wisconsin tight ends. He has 342 career receptions and 25 touchdowns.