Offensive Player of the Year
Tight End – Jake Ferguson
Tight ends have been a big part of the Wisconsin football offense for a long time. They always seem to be the quarterback’s security blanket. Travis Beckum, Owen Daniels, Lance Kendricks, and more have always been successful as a favorite target for their quarterbacks. I don’t expect this year to be any different. With Kyle Penniston transferring, Ferguson is the guy this year without a question.
Ferguson really came on last year as a redshirt freshman. He caught 36 balls for 456 yards and 4 touchdowns. In a run-heavy Wisconsin offense that features Jonathon Taylor, that is a very successful year for anyone in their first year of playing. He will look to build on that season with an even more successful season.
Yes, the Badgers also have a solid receiving corps with Danny Davis, A.J. Taylor, Kendric Pryor, and Aron Cruickshank, but I think Ferguson will make the bigger impact on this offense. He finds ways to get open in big spots and will likely be the target when the offense needs a big play. However, with his success from last season, he can’t come on and surprise anyone. Defenses will be keying on him and he will be a point of emphasis for opposing teams.
The big question for him is his blocking ability. Last season, Luke Benzschawel was more of the blocking tight end, and Ferguson was the receiving tight end. If Ferguson can become a better blocker and not just be a one-dimensional ballplayer, then he will be even more successful.
Other candidates: Danny Davis, A.J. Taylor, Jack Coan