Wisconsin’s 2015 recruiting class hasn’t even signed on the dotted line and already the Badgers have landed a monster recruit for the 2016 class. On Thursday night 4-star running back Antonio Williams announced his verbal commitment to the Badgers.
Proud to be committed to the University of Wisconsin
— Antonio Williams® (@A_B_Williams34) December 5, 2014
It’s a massive start to the 2016 class for the Badgers, as not only is Williams a 4-star recruit, but he is also ranked as the No. 9 running back in the country. He is the No. 119-ranked player in the country according to the 247Sports composite rankings and the No. 3-ranked player out of the state of North Carolina.
Williams chose the Badgers over some major offers, including a final group of Auburn, Notre Dame, North Carolina and Duke. He was a one-time North Carolina commit, but has actually been a silent commit to the Badgers for a few weeks now.
It may be early in the 2016 process and Williams may be one of the highest-ranked prospects at running back, but according to an interview with recruiting partners Badger247, he’s done with the recruitment process.
“I’m shutting it down,” he said, via Badger247. “If schools ask about me, I’ll tell them I’m committed to Wisconsin.”
The 5-11, 210-pound running back is a powerhouse back, but also possesses an impressive amount of speed. He’s been clocked at a 4.7 40-yard dash time according to Rivals.com, but has what many would call “game speed.”
One can easily see that in his junior season highlight tape:
The Badgers are likely done recruiting at the position in 2016, as they have two running backs that are redshirting this season and two to three backs coming in the 2015 class.
Starting off with a stud running back certainly will help form this class in a major way. Williams is also one of the more energetic people out there, and that energy could be useful to helping build this class on an even bigger level than the last two.
Andersen’s first full class in 2014 was ranked as the No. 33 class, while this 2015 class is currently ranked as the No. 26 class in the country. Just having Williams’ verbal pledge puts the Badgers with the No. 39-ranked class in the 2016 cycle. 11 of the 14 teams in the Big Ten with at least one commitment in the 2016 class already.
(photo courtesy Badger247)