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Monday, May 10, 2010

April Showers Bring May Offers

The past week has been relatively newsworthy for Wisconsin from a recruiting perspective, despite the summer doldrums setting in.

It all started just over a week ago on April 30 when Ben Brust won his second appeal to re-sign within the Big Ten after his release from Iowa. All signs pointed toward Brust choosing either Wisconsin or Northwestern.

While Brust was playing in an academic all-star game out in California, the AAU circuit was heating up in Indiana, where 6'10" supernova Anthony Davis exploded at the Spiece Run 'N Slam tournament. The Chicago Perspectives star promptly received a scholarship offer from Wisconsin that Sunday.

But Davis wasn't the only Illinois big man who caught the coaching staff's eye. Benet Academy center Frank Kaminsky of the Illinois Wolves, another 6'10" senior-to-be, received the same offer following his visit to Madison on Thursday. That move pushed the number of confirmed outstanding scholarship offers from the Badgers for the 2011 class into double-digits, with six of those players hailing from the Land of Lincoln.

Then on Friday night, Brust officially signed on to play for Bo Ryan during his official campus visit with Duje Dukan. Bo will look for Brust to do some of the things Jason Bohannon provided from the shooting guard position for the past four years. All in all, he's a pretty nice late addition to the 2010 class.

The news was not all perfect, however. One of Wisconsin's major Illinois targets, Mycheal Henry, was reportedly coming to Madison today, but chose on Monday to commit to the Illini instead. Henry picked Illinois over Wisconsin and Georgetown. Brust's commitment probably didn't have any bearing on Henry's choice, seeing as there is much more of a log jam at the wing positions in Champaign than here. Bruce Weber's team will be loaded for the next several years, though he definitely has high expectations to achieve.

The fast-rising Henry appeared to be a good fit for the Badgers, who told Henry he would fill the role of a go-to scorer on the team. Personally I was hoping that George Marshall could have done some recruiting for UW to that end, but the draw of the home-state school was too strong. Let's hope Marshall stays true.

I still have not gotten word on whether Milwaukee Vincent sophomore Phillip Nolan actually made it to campus last week for a visit as anticipated. Some speculated that Nolan was on the verge a receiving in offer for the 2012 class. Jarrod Uthoff is the next name to listen for in 2011.

: : :

As Wisconsin attempts to reel in three more players for 2011, it was a slight disappointment to hear who the team hosts in next season's Big Ten/ACC Challenge. The Badgers will be able to invite recruits to a battle with North Carolina ... State.

However, I do like the idea of the league top teams going on the road. If Purdue, Michigan State and Ohio State are as good as advertised, each has a good chance of winning in any venue against any team. That means many of the swing games will be held in Big Ten arenas for a change. See, I can be optimistic sometimes ...


  1. Don't blame George Marshall for not helping out Wisconsin getting Henry..I spoke to him a couple times and he expressed how much he wanted Henry to become a Badger. Bottom line, Henry chose Illinois because its his home state and #1 choice. However, I don't agree with his decision. I feel like Henry won't get nearly as much playing time or have as big of an impact at Illinois with a slew of guards and Jereme Richmond in front of him. But heck, its his loss that he made the wrong choice.

  2. Time will tell on the PT issue. Can't blame a kid for staying home.

    I was half-kidding about Marshall also -- I think the ability of committed players to recruit uncommitted ones to an out-of-state program is overstated. It's easier to convince people to stay home IMO.

  3. I know its still early, but what do you think the class of '11 will look like Phil?

  4. After the addition of Brust, I think UW will try to grab two big men in the class. From '11 to '12, UW loses Leuer, Nankivil, Jarmusz, Taylor and Wilson (this season's possible starting 5). Replacements at 1-3 are already lined up with Dukan, Brust, Gasser, and Marshall. That leaves holes in the front court.

    There are 3 open scholarships, so a scoring swingman who can attack the rim is also a priority. Forgive me if I'm describing Tokoto here, but the Badgers need someone to bring a different dynamic to the position than Jarmusz or Dukan. An Evans with better handles. It will be interesting to see how (if) Bo hedges his Tokoto chances with the 2011 class.

    Current offers are out to 2 guards, 3-4 wings and at least 3 big men.

    An early prediction?
    F-*Some off-the-radar wing*
    F-Plumlee -or- Uthoff


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