Badgers mine Colorado for potential surprise 2016 commitment

If there’s one thing we’ve seen since the start of the Paul Chryst era on the recruiting trail, it is the fact that they aren’t going to leave any stone unturned. That proved to be the case, as per Badger247, Wisconsin has landed a sleeper as commitment No. 24 in the class of 2016.

UPDATE: Flood has changed his reporting, and UW’s offer appears to be a grey shirt offer — meaning Harrell would have to pay his way for the first year and then be put on scholarship.

UW managed to sneak Denver (Col.) East high school athlete Deron Harrell out of the state and in to Madison without his name leaking out. They also offered the 6-3, 175-pound cornerback over his official visit this weekend.

“Wisconsin was my number one school,” he told Evan Flood of Badger247. “If they offered, I was going to commit right on the spot. I love the history of their football program, but they also have a great academic program.”

Harrell, despite a 4.5 second 40-yard dash time and playing in the biggest city in the state of Colorado managed to garner little attention on the recruiting trail.

Harrell had no offers on the table, with interest just starting show from programs like Colorado State, Hawaii, Utah State and Wyoming.

Wisconsin’s Micky Turner saw him and wouldn’t give up on getting him in a Badger uniform though.

“He liked how good of an athlete I was,” said Harrell to Badger247. “He also liked my personality.”

Our Analysis:

It isn’t clear if the high school cornerback is going to be sticking to that position at the collegiate level, but the Badgers have made it very clear they feel they have snuck one past some other Power 5 programs.

UW’s recruitment here feels much like the Nate Howard situation in the 2015 recruiting class. However, don’t expect the drama of that recruitment here, as UW won’t have a head coach leaving or his position coach either.

A look at the film shows a player with a lot of raw potential, but a lot of need to work on overall technique if he is going to play cornerback at UW. However, the biggest area of potential seen on film is actually on the offensive side of the football.

He could be one heck of a running back or receiver with his skill set, but Wisconsin has done a great job with turning a talented wide receiver like Natrell Jamerson into a competent cornerback quickly as well. Look for this to be a player to watch in a few years time.

If Wisconsin’s constant evaluation and mining of talent from all over the country can yield potential like this, the Badgers may have something special on their hands. Should Harrell accept the offer or Wisconsin improve their original offer here, look for this to be a done deal.

Andrew Coppens

About Andrew Coppens

Andy is a member of the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA). He is the Managing Editor of MadTownBadger and associate editor of Bloguin's World Cup site, 32flags.com as well as Publisher of Big Ten site talking10.com