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All-Bielema Team o-line taking shape

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***Vote for the All-Bielema Team on Facebook***

Over the weekend, voting started for the offensive line positions on the All-Bielema Team. As any Badger fan knows, UW's o-line has become known consistently as one of the top units in the country. So it stands to reason that there are a number of good candidates at each position along the line.

Left tackle has become the glamour position along the offensive line and UW has had a pretty good crop during the Bielema era. It started with Joe Thomas in 2006. He won the Outland Trophy and has gone on to become a five-time Pro Bowler in the NFL. Gabe Carimi followed him, started for four years, and he too won the Outland Trophy and was a first-round pick. Last year, in his first season on the left side, Ricky Wagner earned honorable mention All-Big Ten honors.

There hasn't been much turnover at left guard either. Andy Kemp, a second-team All-Big Ten choice, started from 2006-08. He was succeeded by All-American John Moffitt in 2009 and 2010. And last year, Travis Frederick earned second-team all-conference honors at the position.

Which brings us to Monday's vote, centers. Because Moffitt looks to be running away with the vote at left guard, there are only two center candidates to choose from.

The Center Candidates:

Marcus Coleman (2006-07)
Started all 26 games at center in 2006-07 ... earned All-Big Ten honors both seasons, including first-team as a senior ... lone senior on 2007 o-line








Konz_Peter_Oregon_2011 (4).jpgPeter Konz (2009-11)
Started 32 games at center over three seasons ... 2011 first-team All-American ... 2011 Rimington Trophy finalist ... first-team All-Big Ten as a junior ... three-time Academic All-Big Ten ... 2010 ESPN Academic All-District ... Sporting News freshman All-American in 2009






Remember to vote early and often for the All-Bielema team either on Facebook or Twitter using #AllBielemaTeam (follow @BadgerFootball).

Catching on

***Vote for the All-Bielema Team on Facebook***

While Travis Beckum and Lance Kendricks continue to battle it out for the tight end spot on the All-Bielema Team, we turn our attention to the wide receiver position.

For our purposes, the starting offense will be made up of a running back, fullback, tight end and two wide receivers. With two open spots, we have included five wide receivers in the discussion. It looks like these receivers will have the benefit of Russell Wilson at QB, Montee Ball at RB and either Beckum or Kendricks at TE. That means a lot of 1-on-1 coverage on the outside. Who is best equipped to take advantage of that?

For two of the WR candidates, special teams play was (and is) a big part of their contributions, Try to separate that, however, as there will be voting for punt returner and kickoff returner in the coming weeks.

The Wide Receiver Candidates:

Thumbnail image for Abbrederis_Jared_IND_2011 (2).jpgJared Abbrederis (2010-present)
Former scout team QB who exploded on the scene as a redshirt sophomore ... 933 receiving yards last season were fifth-best in school history and fifth in the Big Ten ... also had eight TD grabs, which is tied for fifth-best in UW history ... honorable-mention All-Big Ten choice ... in just two seasons, already ranks 18th in school history with 1,222 career receiving yards ... his 16.3 yards per catch in his career is 10th-best in school history ... two career 100-yard receiving games




Thumbnail image for Anderson_Isaac_Mich_09_3.jpgIsaac Anderson (2006-10)
23rd all-time in school history with 1,048 career receiving yards ... played in 46 career games, starting 26 of them ... 80 career catches ... caught 80-yard TD pass on first play of the 2009 season, tied for the fifth-longest pass play in Badgers' history ... also scored his only career rushing TD in that game ... two career 100-yard receiving games



Gilreath_Daivd_IND_08.jpgDavid Gilreath (2007-10)
2008 second-team All-Big Ten ... 2007 first-team freshman All-American ... ranks third in school history in all-purpose yards ... played in 50 career games, starting 18 at wide receiver ... 22nd in school history with 1,077 career receiving yards ... also rushed for 442 yards in career ... best season was as a sophomore, catching 31 passes for 520 yards and three TDs and rushing for 285 yards and two scores ... had a 90-yard TD run at Indiana in 2008, the second-longest run in school history ... ran for 168 yards and two TDs vs. Hoosiers ... also had a 100-yard receiving game vs. Cal Poly ... after bouncing around NFL last year, signed free-agent contract with Pittsburgh Steelers in January

Swan_Luke_WSU_Celebration.jpgLuke Swan (2004-07)
Former walk-on turned team captain ... played in only eight games with no catches his first two seasons then caught 60 passes for 1,046 yards and seven TDs in 2006-07 ... three-time Academic All-Big Ten and two-time ESPN the Magazine Academic All-District ... senior season cut short midway through due to hamstring injury ... only 100-yard game of career came in key 2006 win at Iowa with backup QB Tyler Donovan at the helm ... 17.4 yards per catch for his career is tied for fifth-best in school history

Toon_Nick_Oregon_2011.jpgNick Toon (2008-11)
Third in school history with 2,447 career receiving yards and 171 career receptions ... fifth at UW with 18 career receiving touchdowns ... second-team All-Big Ten as a senior ... 64 catches in 2011 are tied for third-most in school history ... 10 TD catches in 2011 are second-best in UW history ... 926 receiving yards in 2011 are sixth-best in school history ... career-high nine receptions for 104 yards vs. Oregon in 2012 Rose Bowl ... honorable mention All-Big Ten in 2009 with 54 catches for 805 yards and four TDs ... played in 47 career games with 31 starts ... three career 100-yard receiving games


Remember to vote early and often for the All-Bielema team either on Facebook or Twitter using #AllBielemaTeam (follow @BadgerFootball).

Cream of the crop

Thumbnail image for 781100912181_Panthers_v_Giants.jpg***Vote for the All-Bielema Team on Facebook***

The first three days of voting for the All-Bielema Team produced some runaway winners. QB Russell Wilson, RB Montee Ball and FB Bradie Ewing each garnered better than 80 percent of the votes on Facebook. I'm thinking our next position group won't be as clear-cut.

A total of five former Badger tight ends have been taken in the last six NFL Drafts. The three most recent of those, Travis Beckum, Garrett Graham and Lance Kendricks, all played for head coach Bret Bielema. That trio is so good that Jacob Pedersen, a second-team All-Big Ten choice last year whose eight TD catches were tied for second-most among TEs in the country last year, didn't make the finalist list.

The Tight End Candidates:

Thumbnail image for Beckum_Travis_OSU1_07.jpgTravis Beckum (2006-08)
2007 John Mackey Award finalist ... 2007 first-team All-American ... led nation's tight ends with 982 receiving yards in 2007 ... that was a school record for TEs ... also set school TEs record for catches in a season with 75 in 2007 ... 2006 semifinalist for John Mackey Award ... 2006 second-team All-American ... senior season cut short by leg injury ... career totals of 159 receptions (3rd in school history), 2,149 receiving yards (3rd) and 11TDs ... also had seven career 100-yard receiving games ... drafted in the third round by the New York Giants and has 26 career receptions in three NFL seasons


Graham_Garrett_Miami_09_4.jpgGarrett Graham (2006-09)
Two-time first-team All-Big Ten choice ... 2009 honorable mention All-American ... led Badgers in receptions, receiving yards and receiving TDs in 2008 and '09 ... career totals of 1,492 receiving yards (12th in school history), 121 receptions (T7th) and 16 TDs (T6th) ... drafted in the fourth round by the Houston Texans and has played in 13 games in two seasons



Kendricks_Lance_SJSU_10.jpgLance Kendricks (2007-10)
2010 John Mackey Award finalist ... 2010 first-team All-American ... 663 receiving yards in 2010, third-best among nation's TEs ... led Badgers in receptions, receiving yards and receiving TDs as a senior ... career totals of 78 receptions, 1,160 receiving yards (18th in school history) and eight TDs ... drafted in the second round by the St. Louis Rams, starting 10 games and making 28 catches as a rookie




Remember to vote early and often for the All-Bielema team either on Facebook or Twitter using #AllBielemaTeam (follow @BadgerFootball).

NFL Scouting Combine kicks off this week

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Now that the NFL season has wrapped up, football fans can turn their attention squarely to the 2012 NFL Draft, which is a little more than two months away. One of the biggest events on the "Path to the Draft" in the NFL scouting combine, which opens this week in Indianapolis.

***Follow all the former Badgers at UWBadgers.com's 2012 NFL Scouting Combine page***

This year a school-record eight former Badgers were invited to the combine, the second-highest total of any school in the country. The players invited were:

* FB Bradie Ewing
* CB Antonio Fenelus
* C Peter Konz
* P Brad Nortman
* OL Josh Oglesby
* WR Nick Toon
* QB Russell Wilson
* OL Kevin Zeitler

Last year, DE J.J. Watt wowed the scouts with his performance at the combine, working himself up to the No. 11 pick in the draft. QB Scott Tolzien also helped himself, making a good impression during drills and as a "throwing" quarterback while the other skill position players worked out, eventually landing a free agent deal and spending the season with the San Francisco 49ers.

Once again, NFL Network will have extensive coverage of the combine from Lucas Oil Stadium. Perhaps the Badgers will benefit from their familiarity with the field, having beaten Michigan State, 42-39, in the inaugural Big Ten Football Championship game on Dec. 3 in that venue.

The complete combine schedule is below, along with the NFL Network's coverage.

PLAYERS' SCHEDULES
Groups 1, 2, 3 (K, ST, OL, TE)

Badgers: Konz, Nortman, Zeitler, Oglesby
Feb. 22        Arrive in Indy/Registration/Orientation/Interviews
Feb. 23        Measurements/Medical Examinations/Media/Psychological testing/Interviews
Feb. 24        NFLPA meeting/Psychological testing/Interviews
Feb. 25        Workouts

Groups 4, 5, 6 (QB, WR, RB)
Badgers: Ewing, Toon, Wilson
Feb. 23        Arrive in Indy/Registration/Orientation/Interviews
Feb. 24        Measurements/Medical Examinations/Media/Psychological testing/Interviews
Feb. 25        NFLPA meeting/Psychological testing/Interviews
Feb. 26        Workouts

Groups 10, 11 (DB)
Badgers: Fenelus
Feb. 25        Arrive in Indy/Registration/Orientation/Interviews
Feb. 26        Measurements/Medical Examinations/Media/Psychological testing/Interviews
Feb. 27        NFLPA meeting/Psychological testing/Interviews
Feb. 28        Workouts

NFL NETWORK SCHEDULE
Feb. 25        8 a.m.-6 p.m.    K, OL, TE workouts
Feb. 26        8 a.m.-6 p.m.    RB, QB, WR workouts
Feb. 27        8 a.m.-6 p.m.    LB, DL workouts
Feb. 28        8 a.m.-6 p.m.    DB workouts
Feb. 29        7 p.m.              NFL Scouting Combine Wrap-up Show

All-Bielema backfield has familiar look

Ball_Montee_PennState_2011.jpg***Vote for the All-Bielema Team on Facebook***

Day two of voting for the All-Bielema team was very similar to day one, with the most recent candidate running away with the popular vote. On both Facebook and Twitter, 2011 Heisman Trophy finalist Montee Ball easily outdistanced 2009 Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year John Clay and 2006 national Freshman of the Year P.J. Hill.

Wednesday the spotlight shifts to the less-heralded half of the Badgers' running back tandem, the fullback. As one of the few teams left in college football that regularly employs a fullback, Wisconsin has produced some pretty good ones in recent years.

The Fullback Candidates:

Ewing_Bradie_USD_2011.jpgBradie Ewing (2008-11)
2011 UW Special Teams Player of the Year ... invited to the 2012 Senior Bowl and 2012 NFL Scouting Combine ... 2010 Tom Wiesner Award winner, given to the team's top Wisconsin-born player ... three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection ... caught 20 passes for 246 yards as a senior ... 504 career all-purpose yards and four career TDs ... started on all four special teams units and made 17 career tackles




Pressley_Chris_NIU_07.jpgChris Pressley (2004-08)
Currently on the Cincinnati Bengals roster ... has played in 29 games in the NFL the last three seasons, starting 13 of them ... started 21 games at FB in his career as a Badger, including 18 in 2007-08 ... two-time Academic All-Big Ten and winner of UW's Ivan B. Williamson Scholastic Award ... 25 career carries for 103 yards and a touchdown ... also caught two passes for eight yards and a TD



Rentmeester_Bill_OSU_08.jpgBill Rentmeester (2005-08)
Appeared in 47 career games, including 39 from 2006-08 ... named UW's special teams player of the year as a senior ... famous for "Billy on the belly" play at Fresno State in 2008 when he ran for eight yards and a first down deep in Wisconsin territory that helped UW run out the clock to end the game ... carried the ball 26 times in his career for 116 yards and one touchdown ... also caught four passes for 21 yards and a score




Remember to vote early and often for the All-Bielema team either on Facebook or Twitter using #AllBielemaTeam (follow @BadgerFootball).


Leader in the clubhouse

Wilson_Russell_NEB_2011 (16).jpg***Vote for the All-Bielema Team on Facebook***

Day one of voting for the All-Bielema Team is in the books and it looks like we have our quarterback. To the surprise of very few, unless there is a huge groundswell of support for either Scott Tolzien or John Stocco over the next three weeks, Russell Wilson will be under center when the team is revealed on March 15.

No one can argue that Wilson had a tremendous impact on the Badgers in his one season. He set an NCAA record for pass efficiency, set school records for passing yards, completions, passing TDs and total offense and led UW to the Rose Bowl. He was a consensus first-team All-Big Ten choice and won the league's inaugural Griese-Brees QB of the Year Award.

However, his competitors were no slouches either. In his only season under head coach Bret Bielema, Stocco led Wisconsin to its only 12-win season in school history. That year he was a semifinalist for the Davey O'Brien Award. While not in the Bielema era, he held the single-season school records for passing yards, completions and passing TDs until Wilson smashed them this year. And for his career, he led the Badgers to a 29-7 record (second-most wins in school history) and ranks second at UW in passing yards, attempts, completions and passing TDs.

Before Wilson's amazing season, Tolzien probably would have been the runaway winner. He led the Badgers to a 21-5 record in his two years as a starter, including an appearance in the 2011 Rose Bowl. He owns the best career pass efficiency mark in school history, two of the top five passing yardage seasons in school history and nearly set a Big Ten record with a .729 completion percentage in 2010. As a senior, he won the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, becoming the only UW quarterback to win a major national award in school history.

Today, we move on to the running backs, perhaps the deepest position of the Bielema era. All three candidates rank among the top 10 in school history in career rushing yardage. Combined they have accounted for six 1,000-yard rushing seasons. And they each scored more than 40 TDs in their career (one almost did it in a single season).

The Running Back Candidates:

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Ball_Montee_Oregon_2011 (3).jpgMontee Ball (2009-present)
2011 Heisman Trophy finalist ... 2011 Doak Walker Award finalist ... 2011 Chicago Tribune Silver Football winner ... 2011 Graham-George Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year ... 2011 Ameche-Dayne Big Ten RB of the Year ... 2011 consensus first-team All-American ... scored 39 TDs in 2011, tying the NCAA record held by Barry Sanders ... led the NCAA with 1,923 rushing yards in 2011 ... career totals of 3,310 rushing yards (9th in school history), 5.8 ypc. (2nd), 55 rushing TDs (2nd), 16 100-yard rushing games (8th) 3,836 all-purpose yards (10th) and 61 total TDs (2nd)


Clay_John_TCU_2010 (2).jpgJohn Clay (2008-10)
2010 Doak Walker Award finalist ... 2010 AP third-team All-American ... 2009 Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year ... 2009 consensus first-team All-Big Ten ... 2009 Champs Sports Bowl MVP ... ranked eighth in the country with 1,517 rushing yards in 2009 ... rushed for 100+ yards and scored at least one TD in 10 straight games ... career totals of 3,413rushing yards (7th in school history), 5.4 ypc. (4th), 41 rushing TDs (6th) and 18 100-yard rushing games (5th)


Hill_P.J._CIT2_07.jpgP.J. Hill (2006-08)
2006 national Freshman of the Year ... 2006 Big Ten Freshman of the Year ... 2006 first-team All-Big Ten ... 2006 Doak Walker Award semifinalist ... seventh-best rushing total for a freshman in NCAA history ... ranked sixth in the country with 1,569 rushing yards in 2006 ... joined Billy Marek and Ron Dayne as the only Badgers to rush for at least 1,000 yards in three-straight seasons ... career totals of 3,942 rushing yards (3rd in school history), 5.1 ypc. (T7th), 42 rushing TDs (T3rd) and 20 100-yard rushing games (3rd)



Remember to vote early and often for the All-Bielema team either on Facebook or Twitter using #AllBielemaTeam (follow @BadgerFootball).

Cast your vote for the 'All-Bielema Team'

Bielema_Bret_IND_2011.jpgBadgers' head coach Bret Bielema is entering his seventh season patrolling UW's sidelines. While that may not sound like much, he is already the second-longest tenured head coach in the Big Ten (trailing only Iowa's Kirk Ferentz). Among the 66 BCS schools, only 12 coaches (Frank Beamer - Virginia Tech, Mack Brown - Texas, Ferentz, Bob Stoops - Oklahoma, Jim Grobe - Wake Forest, Gary Pinkel - Missouri, Mark Richt - Georgia, Jeff Tedford - California, Mike Riley - Oregon State, Mike Gundy - Oklahoma State, Steve Spurrier - South Carolina and Les Miles - LSU) have been in their current roles longer than Bielema.

With that as a backdrop, we felt it was a good time to take a look back and see what would happen if we took the best players from the past six seasons and lined them up on one team. A number of spirited debates come to mind. Who plays left tackle, Gabe Carimi or Joe Thomas? Which 1,000-yard rusher do you prefer, P.J. Hill, John Clay or Montee Ball? Who do you want directing the offense, John Stocco, Scott Tolzien or Russell Wilson? What's your preference at linebacker, Jonathan Casillas, DeAndre Levy, Mike Taylor or Chris Borland?

Since 2006, UW has produced some great football players. Sixteen different players have earned All-America honors, with 11 of them being named first-team All-Americans. The Badgers have had finalists for the Heisman Trophy, Doak Walker Award, John Mackey Award, Rimington Trophy, Ted Hendricks Award, Manning Award and Lou Groza Award. In addition, Tolzien won the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, Watt won the Lott IMPACT trophy, and Carimi and Thomas both won the Outland Trophy.

Nineteen Badgers that played for Bielema were on NFL rosters at the end of the 2011 season. In five NFL drafts, 16 UW players have been taken and this year Wisconsin had eight players invited to the NFL Scouting Combine, the most in school history and the second-most in the country.

So instead of just coming up with a team on our own and have people question our thought process, we wanted to open it up to fans to pick the team. Starting today (Monday, Feb. 20) fans will be able to vote on the Wisconsin Football Facebook page. Each day until Sunday, March 11, a different poll will be revealed asking for the fans' choice at a different position. Fans can also vote on Twitter using the hashtag #AllBielemaTeam (follow @BadgerFootball).

After compiling all the votes, the All-Bielema team will be announced in the March 15 edition of 'Varsity' the official online magazine of Wisconsin Athletics.

Vote early and often!

Eight Badgers continue 'Path to the Draft' at combine

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Alabama and LSU were pretty good last year. I think most rational people will agree on that. To be a good team, you need good players. Again, pretty much a no-brainer. And if you are a good player in college, you will go on to play in the NFL. A pretty simple equation. Good college teams have good players who move on to the NFL.

So it shouldn't come as a huge shock that Alabama had the most players (9) invited to the 2012 NFL Scouting Combine. Nor should anyone be surprised that LSU was tied for second with eight players. Here's where the script deviates a little. One of three teams LSU is tied with is Wisconsin. While that may give some people pause, it shouldn't.

Six players from UW's record-breaking 2011 offense are heading to Indianapolis. That is the most offensive players from one school. Included in that group are three offensive linemen. Wisconsin has a long tradition of producing NFL caliber o-linemen and just last year had three drafted (Gabe Carimi, John Moffitt and Bill Nagy) each of whom started for their respective teams on opening weekend.

The Badgers have won back-to-back Big Ten titles and to do that, you need some talent. Looking at the players who made the jump to the NFL last year and those preparing to do so this year tells you a little about just how talented they were.

Last year, six Badgers were invited to the combine, five were drafted, a total of 12 were in NFL camps when they kicked off in July and eight of them stuck with NFL teams. A total of 23 former Badgers were under NFL contract last season, a number that should grow this year.

Kirk_Cousins_Handoff.jpgOf the eight Badgers invited to the 2012 NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, offensive linemen Peter Konz and Kevin Zeitler look to be the highest-rated. After that, QB Russell Wilson intrigues a lot of teams with his athleticism and makeup. WR Nick Toon is a big body with good hands. FB Bradie Ewing can do a little bit of everything and is a beast on special teams, something that should earn him a long look at the next level.

As Coach Bielema said a number of times, you just don't see that many people the size of OT Josh Oglesby walking around, even at the NFL level. CB Antonio Fenelus may be a bit undersized but UW's defensive coaches will tell you he has been the Badgers' best player on that side of the ball the last two seasons. Lastly, P Brad Nortman impressed a lot of folks with a good week and good performance at the Senior Bowl.

While they weren't invited to the combine, S Aaron Henry, K Philip Welch, LS Kyle Wojta, DT Patrick Butrym and DE Louis Nzegwu all have shots to be late-round picks or free agent pick-ups.  

All five former Badgers drafted in 2011 started for their teams last year, combining to log 41 starts. That number would have been much higher had Carimi, Moffitt and Nagy not all suffered season-ending injuries. This year's class looks to have a similar impact.

Badgers at the NFL Scouting Combine
Bradie Ewing (RB08)
Antonio Fenelus (DB13)
Peter Konz (OL26)
Brad Nortman (PK06)
Josh Oglesby (OL38)
Nick Toon (WO43)
Russell Wilson (QB18)
Kevin Zeitler (OL54)

Schools with most players at 2012 NFL Scouting Combine
Alabama - 9
Wisconsin - 8
LSU - 8
Georgia - 8
Miami - 8

A look at the Badgers' recruiting classes from 2007-10

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ballx-large.jpgWith national signing day for football coming up on Wednesday, this is the time of year a lot of folks get wrapped in recruiting rankings, "five-star" athletes and "winning" signing day. I thought it would be a good idea to go back and look at the Badgers' signing day classes in recent history and see how they fared. I left out last year's class because obviously the jury is still out on most of the players.

Signing Day links:
Feb. 1, 2011 - USA Today: Wisconsin consistently outperforms recruiting rank
Jan. 30, 2012 - USA Today: Future All-America players are often not the top recruits
Jan. 31, 2012 - 'Varsity' preview: Early enrollees get jump on becoming Badgers

I don't want this taken as an indictment of recruiting rankings. According to Rivals.com, Alabama has had the No. 1 class in the country three of the last four years. And I heard they were pretty good this season. So there is some correlation between success on the recruiting trail and succeeding on the field. However, both Illinois and Minnesota were ranked higher than UW in 2008, 2009 and 2010. Their combined record over the last three seasons was 29-46 (.387). Wisconsin was 32-8 (.800).

From 2007-10, Wisconsin signed 86 players to National Letters of Intent. Sixty-four of those players (74.4 percent) are either still on the Badgers' roster or finished their careers at UW. A recent story came out that Auburn has only retained 57 percent of its signees from 2009 and 2010 (both classes ranked in the top 20 in the country by Rivals). UW has 39 of its 45 signees (86.7 percent) still on the roster over that span.

On the field, these classes have helped UW win back-to-back Big Ten titles, play in consecutive Rose Bowls and become one of just six teams in the country to win at least 10 games in each of the last three seasons.

Below are some facts and figures for the Badgers' classes in question:

2007
- 17 players signed
- Ranked 34th nationally and 7th in the Big Ten by Rivals
- Produced 11 starters
- 10 players finished their careers as Badgers
- 7 earned All-Big Ten honors and 1 All-American
- Notable signees: RB John Clay (4 stars), S Aaron Henry (3 stars), OL Josh Oglesby (5 stars), WR Nick Toon (4 stars)

2008

- 24 players signed
- Ranked 41st nationally and 6th in the Big Ten by Rivals
- Produced 14 starters (includes 2 walk-ons)
- 15 players finished their careers as Badgers or are still on the roster
- 6 earned All-Big Ten honors (includes 1 walk-on) and 2 All-Americans
- Notable signees: CB Antonio Fenelus (2 stars), OL Peter Konz (4 stars), LB Mike Taylor (2 stars), OL Kevin Zeitler (3 stars)
- Notable walk-ons: FB Bradie Ewing (2 stars), OL Ricky Wagner (not rated)

2009

- 21 players signed
- Ranked 43rd nationally and 8th in the Big Ten by Rivals
- Produced 9 starters (includes 2 walk-ons)
- 17 players are still on the roster
- 5 earned All-Big Ten honors (includes 1 walk-on) and 2 All-Americans
- Notable signees: RB Montee Ball (4 stars), LB Chris Borland (3 stars), OL Travis Frederick (3 stars), TE Jacob Pedersen (2 stars)
- Notable walk-ons: Ethan Hemer (not rated), Jared Abbrederis (not rated)

2010

- 24 players signed
- Not ranked in Rivals top 50, 11th in the Big Ten
- 22 players are still on the roster
- Notable signees: DT Beau Allen (3 stars), OL Rob Havenstein (3 stars), RB James White (3 stars), WR Manasseh Garner (3 stars)
- Notable walk-ons: K Kyle French (not rated), LB Marcus Trotter (not rated)

Senior Bowl week winding down

As the teams make their final preparations for the Saturday's Senior Bowl, the Badgers who are participating in the game are still turning heads. However, inclement weather forced the North squad to "practice" inside a ballroom in the Mobile Convention Center.



Russell Wilson and the other North Team QBs have impressed the Minnesota Vikings coach staff they have been working with all week (Minneapolis Star-Tribune).

Pro Football Weekly's two reporters both couldn't help but notice Wilson during Wednesday's practice ("I wasn't watching the North quarterbacks closely this morning, but Wisconsin's Russell Wilson nonetheless caught my eye").

NFL.com's Simon Samano says "Wilson isn't short on confidence."

Pro Football Weekly also broke down Kevin Zeitler's draft prospects (2nd round - "A very smart, steady, blue-collar man blocker capable of eliminating defenders when he gets his hands on them").

NFLMocks.com has Zeitler among its top 10 prospects at the Senior Bowl, calling him, "Another massive offensive lineman who is primed to play guard in the NFL."

Even though he's not at the Senior Bowl (probably because he left as a junior), C Peter Konz shows up on Pro Football Weekly's Mock draft 1.0 at No. 18 to San Diego ("Konz has the strength and power to make an immediate impact and fortify the Chargers' interior").

The Senior Bowl will start at 3 p.m. CT with coverage beginning on NFL Network at 2:30 p.m.

ON WISCONSIN