It’s the early signing period in college football, which everyone knows can be chaotic. Luckily, the Wisconsin football team was clear of the chaos of National Signing Day. They have signed all 13 recruits that were committed to the team. They are still waiting on a few recruits like Isaac Hamm and Carson Hinzman to make their announcements, but so far everything has gone as expected for the Wisconsin football team.
But just because everything has gone as expected on National Signing Day for the Badgers doesn’t mean everything has gone as expected recruiting-wise. It’s been well-documented on recruiting sites and Twitter that the Badgers are missing out on some of their top targets, which isn’t all that surprising. But what is surprising is that some of those top prospects are from the state of Wisconsin, where the Badgers usually clean house and get the prospects they want.
The loss of Billy Schruath frustrated a lot of Wisconsin football fans because not only is Schrauth a Wisconsin native, but he was an offensive lineman. Now, Carson Hinzman, also an offensive lineman, is down to Wisconsin and Ohio State. A lot of fans are sweating whether he will commit to Wisconsin or follow Schrauth’s path and leave the state.
To add to that, recruiting class rankings are a measuring stick everyone uses to compare classes. But before you start complaining about where Wisconsin is compared to everyone else and particularly in the Big Ten, you need to understand the rankings. 247Sports’ class rankings are a great tool, but can also be misleading.
These rankings combine the average rating of each recruit and add it in with the number of recruits the team gets. So it’s simple, having a smaller recruiting class, like the Badgers, will hurt their overall ranking.
Right now, the Badgers are currently ranked 13th out of the 14 Big Ten teams. They are tied with Iowa for the second-fewest amount of signed players. Only Nebraska, (11 commits) ranks lower than the Badgers in both categories.
But the average rating of each recruit for the Badgers is 87.25, which would put them second in the Big Ten West, behind only Iowa, and 6th overall in the Big Ten, just 0.02 points behind Michigan State, where former recruiting director Saeed Khalif is now employed.
The Badgers also aren’t done. Head coach Paul Chryst still expects to add to this class before it’s all said and done, through recruiting and the transfer portal.
So please, before you start bashing the Badgers because they aren’t ranked as highly as you would like, think about the quality of the class. The Badgers are bringing in some solid recruits on paper and also have a heck of a walk-on class, which either aren’t factored in or barely make a difference on the teams’ class score.
I know it can be frustrating because fans want this program to take the next step and be contenders for the College Football Playoff, but just remember, they’ve had two very highly-ranked recruiting classes each of the past two cycles. They are going to start contributing more and more.
The class this year may not be big and ranked highly on recruiting sites, but it’s important to remember: quality over quantity.