Aug 31, 2013; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers helmets sit on the field during warmups prior to the game against the Massachusetts Minutemen at Camp Randall Stadium. Wisconsin won 45-0. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Wisconsin Football loses a pair of 2023 commitments

Wisconsin Football: Badgers lose a pair of 2023 commitments

Madison, Wis. – The Wisconsin football program has been in limbo since the firing of head coach Paul Chryst. And with the early signing period roughly a month away, it’s only fair for recruits to want answers about who the program’s leader will be moving forward with their respective futures hanging in the balance. 

After losing three-star wide receiver commit Trech Kekahuna two weeks ago, the Wisconsin Badgers suffered another pair of de-commitments on Thursday. The first was three-star Marist High School standout Jamel Howard. 

Per the 247Sports Composite, Howard is the No. 1,227 overall prospect in the 2023 recruiting class, the No. 132 DL in the country, and the No. 25 player in Illinois.

The 6-foot-3, 320-pound NT initially chose Wisconsin over offers from Akron, Ball State, Central Michigan, Illinois, Iowa State, Kent State, Long Island, Miami (OH), Michigan, Nebraska, Toledo, and Western Michigan.

The rough day for Wisconsin football continues…

Shortly after that, Wisconsin football received its second gut punch of the afternoon when 2023 three-star wide receiver Collin Dixon announced he was de-committing from UW and reopening his recruitment as well. 

Per 247sports Composite, Dixon is the No. 916 overall prospect in the 2023 recruiting class, the No. 71 ATH in the country, and the No. 27 player in Ohio.

The 6-foot-2, 205-pound WR committed to Wisconsin over offers from Akron, Ball State, Buffalo, Duke, Illinois, Indiana, Marshall, Pittsburgh, Purdue, and several others.

UW, who was expected to take two pass-catchers, no longer has a WR commit in the 2023 recruiting cycle.

What it means…

Although Jim Leonhard is the presumed favorite to assume the full-time role, nobody knows better than the interim head coach himself that asking for patience from these young men is tricky with so much uncertainty. 

“I think, hopefully, within the near future, there’s an answer because the longer it takes, the harder it gets to ask people to be patient because there’s huge deadlines coming up with your current roster and decisions they may have to make, recruits and signing day, the transfer portal thing is starting to get closer and closer,” coach Leonhard said. “So the longer it takes, the harder it becomes to ask for that patience. And everyone involved, I think, knows that.”

These things, while disappointing, shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise, considering the unresolved head coaching situation.

I can assure you that one recruiting class, especially one that isn’t widely considered a home run, won’t cripple the program.

Between the transfer portal and poaching season, UW can find adequate replacements that will fit what the Badgers want to do moving forward. It’s also important to note that if Jim Leonhard gets the job, we have yet to learn his vision for the program from a schematic or recruiting standpoint.

A disappointing day, yes. But the University of Wisconsin will endure. Losing recruits was always possible with the head coaching situation in flux; I’m just shocked it took this long.

Back to crootin’.

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