Apr 3, 2015; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Wisconsin Badgers head coach Bo Ryan during practice for the 2015 NCAA Men
On Monday, May 11th, Andy van Vliet, a 2015 power forward, committed to Wisconsin. He committed to the Badgers over Washington State, Oregon State, and St. Mary’s. His commitment gave the Wisconsin Badgers a total of five commits for this recruiting cycle. It also solidified this group as one of the top recruiting classes of the Bo Ryan era.
Joining van Vliet in cardinal and white next season will be Brevin Pritzl, Alex Illikainen, Khalil Iverson, and Charlie Thomas (finally, an easy name to spell).
They are the 45th best class in the nation according to 247 Sports, but when have those sites ever been right about a Wisconsin team? This group has a lot of talent and potential, and could be the class to help lead Wisconsin to a National Championship.
Yes, I am that high on this incoming class.
While many recruiting databases wouldn’t rank this class as anything but decent, I think Bo Ryan will do wonders with this group. While there is no blue chipper like Diamond Stone or Sam Dekker in this class, Bo found five guys that have tremendous talent and fit into the system like a jigsaw puzzle. I have a feeling this is going to be another case where analysts underrate Badger recruits, just to apologize and feel silly four years later. Remember Frank Kaminsky?
This freshmen class will have the task of replacing the five departing Badgers, Josh Gasser, Duje Dukan, Traevon Jackson, Sam Dekker, and Frank Kaminsky.
Those five players brought Wisconsin basketball to new heights, and sent Bo Ryan to consecutive final fours, a first in program history. Kaminsky won National Player of the Year. Dekker is a projected lottery pick. Jackson was one of the most clutch players in program history. Gasser was the ultimate glue guy, the Wisconsin version of Captain America. Dukan was a weapon off the bench. Replacing their success and talent won’t be easy. But if any class can do it, it’s this one.
In this slide show, you will see each new recruit’s short term and long-term outlook, their strengths and weaknesses, and a comparison to other players.
Next: Brevin Pritzl