Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Players to Watch; Sam Arneson Ready to Take His Next Step

The spotlight gets enhanced just a little more this weekend for everyone wearing the Cardinal red. But maybe moreso for those guys like tight end Sam Arneson.

With the most recent TE success story, Jacob Pedersen, likely headed to the next level, the void left at one of the most important offensive positions for the Badgers is open for the taking.

Merrill, Wisc., native Sam Arneson has been waiting. Waiting his time to shine as a focal point in coach Gary Andersen’s offense.

While he’s already shown flashes of what he can do, Saturday will be a particularly big day for the big man with plenty of Badgers heritage.

“Sam has done a tremendous job understanding his role,” coach Andersen, said. “The direction that he’s headed, I expect him to be one of the best in the conference, and one of the best you’ll see week-in and week-in in the country. He’s reliable, consitent and competitive and he’s got good hands.”

With a work ethic second to none and the athletic ability to set him apart from his peers, expect big things this season from the 6-4, 260 pound Dairy State product.

Sam’s dad, was a tight end for the Badgers, earning letters in 1983 and 1984.

Now entering his fourth full season with the program, Arneson will be shooting for more than just his fourth varsity letter, but a spot on the All-Big 10 team along with a spot in the heart of Badgers fans, forever.

Arneson’s Career Stats

2013: Earned third letter, playing in 13 games with three starts … finished season with six receptions for 57 yards and two touchdowns … caught a 1-yard touchdown pass vs. South Carolina in Capital One Bowl (Jan. 1) … returned a kickoff for 9 yards vs. Penn State on Nov. 30 … saw action at Minnesota on Nov. 23, vs. Indiana on Nov. 16.vs. BYU on Nov. 9, at Iowa on Nov. 2, at Illinois on Oct. 19, vs. Northwestern on Oct. 12 … had three receptions for 39 yards, both career highs, and a touchdown at Ohio State on Sept. 28 … saw action vs. Purdue on Sept. 21, at Arizona State on Sept. 14 and against Tennessee Tech on Sept. 7 … caught two passes for 17 yards against UMass on Aug. 31

2012: Earned second letter, playing in 13 games withg two starts … made one catch for 9 yards against Stanford in the Rose Bowl on Jan. 1 … caught a 3-yard touchdown pass in the Big Ten Championship Game against Nebraska on Dec. 1 … started at tight end at Penn State on Nov. 24, against Ohio State on Nov. 17 … caught first career touchdown at Indiana on Nov. 10 … saw action against Michigan State on Oct. 27, vs. Minnesota on Oct. 20 and at Purdue on Oct. 13 … caught first career pass for five yards against Illinois on Oct. 6 … saw time at Nebraska on Sept. 29, against UTEP on Sept. 22 and Utah State on Sept. 15 … played against Northern Iowa on Sept. 1.

2011: One of three true freshmen to earn a letter … played in 10 of 14 games as blocking TE … did not play in Big Ten Championship Game or against Minnesota, Illinois, UNLV

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Tags: 2014 Spring Game Gary Andersen Sam Arneson Wisconsin Badgers Football

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