Last week we unveiled our “Early Lineup Look” feature to great fanfare. With two teams in the rearview mirror, he had to hit the Big Ten. Why not start with one of the resurgent programs in the conference? Last year, Chris Bono took the reigns of the Badger team after spending the previous six seasons building the South Dakota State program from scratch into one that finished 12th at the 2018 NCAA Championships, ahead of perennial Big 12 powers Oklahoma State, Iowa State, and Oklahoma. With only a few months under their belts in Madison, Bono and staff reinvigorated the Wisconsin fanbase and established the Badgers as a national force on the recruiting front. His first full recruiting class, the incoming freshman of Fall 2019, were ranked fifth in the nation. Wisconsin was able to retain two homegrown top-100 recruits in the Class of 2019, a point that had been problematic in the past. This year’s Wisconsin squad will feature three returning All-Americans along with three others that have qualified for the NCAA Championships at one point of their careers. Of course, since the Big Ten is a meatgrinder every single year, it will still be a few more seasons before the Badgers can threaten traditional powerhouse like Penn State, Iowa, and Ohio State on a regular basis; however, it’s apparent that Wisconsin is headed in the right direction and will show even more signs of improvement in year two of the Bono regime.
Here is an early weight-by-weight look at the Wisconsin lineup and I stress the word EARLY! As we get closer to the preseason, we’ll have a better idea of which student-athletes will be changing weights or redshirting.
125: Eric Barnett (Freshman; Greenville, Wisconsin)