This 12 months’s 2021 Wisconsin Badgers soccer crew is loaded with expertise. From high to backside, at practically each place, there are gamers who may doubtlessly make the leap to the Nationwide Soccer League after their time in Madison is completed. Because the season begins, listed here are some gamers to maintain a watch out for as potential NFL stars after faculty.
Graham Mertz — A former four-star recruit and highschool All-American, Mertz has the entire expertise on this planet. Since early in his Badger profession, he has proven transient glimpses of this expertise. Final season, in his first recreation as a beginning quarterback, Mertz went 20 for 21 for 5 touchdowns within the season opener, and the hype gave the impression to be actual.
However, simply hours after the sport ended, Mertz examined optimistic for COVID-19, which threw a serious wrench into his season. The offense was by no means proper final 12 months as Mertz couldn’t regain his week-one type. Going into the 2021 season, the joy for Mertz is on one other degree. He’ll hope to impress not simply Badger followers, however NFL scouts in addition to he’ll attempt to make the leap to skilled soccer after his senior season.
Jake Ferguson — A preseason All-American, Ferguson is arguably probably the most gifted and completed tight finish in faculty soccer this 12 months. He has performed in 34 profession video games at Wisconsin and has compiled greater than 1,000 receiving yards throughout his time in Madison.
Ferguson is thought for his delicate palms and skill to search out the weak spot in defensive coverages. His athleticism doesn’t essentially leap off the display screen, however his blocking means blended together with his stellar numbers catching the soccer will nearly definitely translate to an NFL alternative after this season is over.
Logan Brown — Brown is without doubt one of the highest-rated recruits within the historical past of Wisconsin soccer. The previous five-star prospect from the category of 2019 has the potential to proceed Wisconsin’s status as a prolific NFL draft machine. Whereas Brown has but to have a lot of a possibility in Madison, he’ll nearly definitely play a a lot larger position this season than he has within the final two. Preserve a watch out for the six-foot-six redshirt sophomore to contribute closely on Wisconsin’s skilled offensive line.
Nolan Rucci — Like Brown, Rucci is a former five-star offensive lineman who dedicated to Wisconsin as part of the category of 2020. He’s the youthful brother of the present Badger tight finish and fullback Hayden Rucci. The six-foot-eight and a virtually 300-pound mountain of a person’s athleticism is off the charts.
Rucci arguably has the most effective shot at an expert profession of anybody on this Badger crew based mostly on his measurements and status. Whereas he more than likely won’t see a lot taking part in time this 12 months as a freshman, Rucci’s future at Wisconsin is extraordinarily shiny.
Jack Sanborn — Sanborn is without doubt one of the most completed linebackers within the historical past of Wisconsin soccer. The senior from Deer Park, Illinois has appeared in 32 video games for the Badgers and has amassed 139 profession tackles. Sanborn is on the preseason watchlist for practically each main defensive award this season, and he would be the undisputed chief of what needs to be one other stout Wisconsin protection. Sanborn will make his cash within the NFL based mostly on his status as a pacesetter and powerful tackler. He is without doubt one of the finest defensive gamers in faculty soccer, and he has the flexibility to take over video games like he did in final season’s Duke’s Mayo Bowl, a recreation by which he gained Most worthy participant.
Caesar Williams — Williams has turn out to be probably the most reliable cornerback Wisconsin has going into this season. The senior will draw every crew’s high broad receiver this 12 months and can hopefully proceed to close them down as he has finished within the 35 video games he has already performed at Wisconsin. Whereas the measurements and stats should not essentially that spectacular, Williams has developed into a real lockdown nook in his first three years in Madison. The event Williams has proven since his redshirt season makes him an fascinating NFL prospect going into this season.
Braelon Allen — Allen is a freak of an athlete, it’s so simple as that. As soon as a member of the category of 2022, Allen reclassified a 12 months earlier and is now a member of this 12 months’s crew. Whereas recruited as a linebacker, it’s rumored he’ll now begin the season taking part in on the offensive facet of the ball as a operating again. No matter Allen finally ends up taking part in, he’ll convey unbelievable athleticism to the Badgers. Allen squats greater than 600 kilos and energy cleans greater than 400 kilos as a 17 12 months outdated. He’s a freak of an athlete, which makes him extraordinarily prone to go professional.
Andy Vujnovich — If there may be any discuss of freakish athletes on this Wisconsin crew, it could be a mistake to not point out the Badgers’ senior punter. The Dubuque switch turned a dependable punter in his first season in Madison, averaging practically 42 yards per kick with an extended of 60. However, what makes Vujnovich completely different from the remaining is his unbelievable power and athleticism. An article by The Athletic Ink titled “Bruce Feldman’s 2021 College Football Freaks List” sums up Vujnovich finest as “A jacked 6-3, 230-pound dude who averaged 41.6 yards per punt in 2020, he’s right here on account of some loopy measurables: a 35-inch vert; a professional agility time faster than most defensive backs (4.00 seconds); a 10-yard break up of 1.54, and he benches 395.” Vujnovich’s insane power and athleticism is the most important cause for his professional potential.
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