Recruiting never stops in Badgers country, and we’re here to help put it all in perspective. Join us every Tuesday and Thursday night for a recap of Wisconsin recruiting news, insight on what’s happening behind the scenes and a glimpse at what’s coming next.
2019 S Litchfield Ajavon lists Wisconsin in top 7
Litchfield Ajavon, a 6-foot, 185-pound safety in the 2019 class from Alexandria, Va., has yet to visit Wisconsin. But that didn’t stop him from including the Badgers in his list of top seven schools, which he released Friday. In addition to Wisconsin, he listed Clemson, Notre Dame, Michigan, Penn State, Georgia and Virginia Tech.
I’m truly grateful for all the schools that have given me the opportunity to play football at the next level. I will be narrowing my options down to these seven schools (not in order). No interviews please. Thanks to @Recruit_Edits for the picture. pic.twitter.com/11epVG9cYw
— Litchfield Ajavon (@litch_ajavon) December 2, 2017
Ajavon has 16 scholarship offers, including six from the Big Ten: Wisconsin, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State, Penn State and Indiana. He also has offers from Notre Dame, Clemson, Georgia and Louisville, among others. Wisconsin offered Ajavon on April 5.
Ajavon is a 4-star prospect and is rated as the No. 4 player in Virginia, according to 247Sports. Although he hasn’t visited, Wisconsin’s success this season may have opened his eyes.
The 247Sports evaluation describes him as “an enforcer in the secondary. He reads and reacts quickly to plays. Ajavon is very aggressive and has good closing speed. He is also very physical and tackles well. Ajavon needs to continue to work on his technique in coverage, but he has a big upside and a chance to become a star at the collegiate level.”
Wisconsin commit Bryson Williams earns Nebraska offer
Wisconsin figured it would have competition for some of its committed players in the lead-up to signing day. But with defensive tackle Bryson Williams (Lincoln, Neb.) in particular, there will be plenty to think about before he inks with his future program.
That’s because Williams earned a scholarship offer from Nebraska and new coach Scott Frost on Sunday. Williams, a 3-star prospect who ranks as the No. 62 defensive tackle in the country in the 247Sports composite ratings, did not receive a scholarship offer from former Nebraska coach Mike Riley. The Cornhuskers had already offered in-state defensive tackle Masry Mapieu, who committed in June 2016.
Blessed to have received an offer from the University of Nebraska. pic.twitter.com/mco0Oxg5Fd
— Bryson Williams (@brysonjw_18) December 4, 2017
According to Land of 10 Nebraska recruiting reporter Chris Bumbaca, Frost and linebackers coach Barrett Ruud arrived at Williams’ house around 7 p.m. Sunday and talked for nearly two hours.
“He was a really easy guy to talk to, for sure,” Williams told Bumbaca. “Something that really stuck out was, he’s super excited. He can’t wait to really get started and start recruiting in the state and really going for the local guys that want to play for Nebraska and work hard every day.”
Both Frost and Rudd have a history with Williams. Ruud coached Williams during his sophomore season at Lincoln Southeast High School. Frost’s former program, UCF, offered Williams back on March 2.
Williams said he planned on taking his official visit to Wisconsin next week but was “still thinking about things.”
“I’m a huge fan of what Scott Frost did at UCF,” Williams told Bumbaca. “I was a Nebraska fan growing up. But like I said, I’m committed to Wisconsin right now.”
If Wisconsin loses out on Williams, it would be a big deal for the Badgers’ 2018 class. Williams is the only defensive tackle committed in the class and was projected to play nose guard. Wisconsin had 19 other known offers out to defensive tackles, and 12 of those players are committed elsewhere.
RB Nakia Watson earns Purdue offer
Running back Nakia Watson has put together a phenomenal senior season for Austin (Texas) Westlake High School. And given his success, it isn’t surprising to see more schools taking notice.
Watson, a 2018 Wisconsin commit, tweeted that he had received a scholarship offer from Purdue.
— Nakia Watson (@nakiawatson04) December 4, 2017
Wisconsin identified Watson’s skill early in his recruiting process and was the only Power 5 conference school to offer him a scholarship upon his commitment. Watson also had offers from Bowling Green, Nevada, North Texas, Ohio, Sam Houston State and Texas State.
During Westlake’s 70-14 playoff victory against Edinburg Vela last week, Watson carried 13 times for 151 yards with 2 touchdowns. According to MaxPreps.com, Watson has 225 carries this season for 1,697 yards and 24 touchdowns. He is averaging 7.5 yards per carry. Watson has caught 16 passes for 319 yards and 6 touchdowns.
Westlake has been so dominant that Watson has sat out several quarters of games. During a three-game stretch in November, Watson carried a total of 13 times. It will be interesting to see whether more schools try to tempt Watson to stray from his Wisconsin commitment.
Watson took his official visit for Wisconsin’s home game against Maryland on Oct 21. Afterward, he told 247Sports reporter Ben Worgull that he had fielded calls from UCLA and other schools.
“I’m Wisconsin all the way,” Watson told Worgull. “I’m not de-committing anytime soon.”
Wisconsin coaches hit recruiting trail
Members of Wisconsin’s coaching staff wasted little time after the Big Ten Championship Game in visiting with 2018 commits. Coach Paul Chryst, offensive coordinator/O-line coach Joe Rudolph and outside linebackers coach Bob Bostad immediately made the rounds across part of the Midwest.
Their first visit was to see wide receiver Isaac Guerendo (Avon, Ind.), who lives only about 15 miles west of Lucas Oil Stadium.
— Isaac Guerendo (@isaacguerendo) December 3, 2017
Here’s a look at some of the coaching staff’s other visits:
Quarterback Chase Wolf (Cincinnati, Ohio)
— Steve Wolf (@swolfhoops) December 3, 2017
Defensive end Isaiah Mullens (Columbus, Ohio)
— Jon McNamara (@McNamaraRivals) December 4, 2017
Tight end Jaylan Franklin (Rockwood, Mich.)
— Jaylan (@JaylanFranklin_) December 4, 2017
Safety Reggie Pearson Jr. (River Rouge, Mich.)
— Reggie (@reggiepearson21) December 4, 2017
Offensive lineman Michael Furtney (Milan, Mich.)
— Michael Furtney (@FurtneyMichael) December 5, 2017