Should Wisconsin pursue Spencer Rattler in the transfer portal?

Spencer Rattler came out of high school as the highest-rated quarterback in the 2019 recruiting class, according to 247Sports. He chose to play at Oklahoma for Lincoln Riley, who had two previous quarterbacks, Baker Mayfield and Kyler Murray, go on to be the first overall pick in the 2018 and 2019 NFL Drafts, respectively.

Rattler looked like he was well on his way to being a high draft pick as well. After sitting behind Jalen Hurts for a year, he become the starting QB for Oklahoma in 2020. As a redshirt freshman, Rattler completed 68% of his passes for 3,031 yards, 28 touchdowns, and seven interceptions.

Coming into the 2021 season, Rattler was projected to be a top-10 pick in next year’s draft.

Things changed pretty quickly.

Rattler struggled early and was eventually benched during the Red River Rivalry Game with Texas. Oklahoma was down big when he was benched. Freshmen quarterback Caleb Williams came in and brought the Sooners all the way back, defeating Texas, 55-48.

Spencer Rattler lost his job and his NFL Daft stock was plummeting. So a transfer was always something that seemed likely. Lincoln Riley took the USC job, but I don’t necessarily think that Rattler is transferring because of that. I think this was probably coming either way.

So now that Rattler is in the portal, that begs the question: should the Wisconsin football team attempt to bring him to Madison?

There have already been reports that the Badgers could be looking to bring someone in to maybe give Mertz some competition at the position, but the names attached to those rumors were all players who had just one year left of eligibility that Mertz could have a shot to beat out. Now Spencer Rattler would probably be a one-year thing as well and would likely be the starter if he did come to Madison. I’m guessing a guy like Rattler would like assurances that he would be the starter next season rather than transfer somewhere and be a backup.

But I can think of another time the Badgers got a quarterback via transfer that was in Madison for a year before moving on and things worked out pretty well. Now I don’t think Rattler is going to be as good as Russell Wilson. Very few are. But Spencer Rattler is a gifted passer who doesn’t lack confidence, something some people think is a problem with Graham Mertz.

Some people may be turned off by Rattler’s overall attitude, especially with how he carried himself in Netlix’s high school docuseries ‘QB1,’ where Rattler was one of the quarterbacks being covered. He was cocky and would rather blame the receiver than take any blame himself. He was also deemed ineligible during his senior season for a district code of conduct violation. There are plenty of rumors out there about what he may or may not have done, but none of them have ever been confirmed.

So with all of that in mind, is Spencer Rattler a player Wisconsin coaches or fans would like to see in Madison? He has shown that he can be one of the best quarterbacks in the country. That’s undeniable. But there seems to be some baggage that comes with the player. I’m not so sure that’s the kind of player the Badgers are looking to lead their team,

On the flip side, is Wisconsin a place Rattler will want to come? Do the Badgers employ an offense that would make him appealing to the NFL? He will still probably be a draft pick after the 2022 season. A top-10 pick? Maybe? But he’d have a long way to go to get back there. I’m not sure the Badgers offense or even the climate is attractive to a kid from Arizona.

I think the Badgers will probably do their due diligence and check in, but I doubt there’s any real interest between the two parties on either side.