Stanton Names a Top Five

Fresh off what he hopes is his final recruiting visit of the summer, Santa Margarita (Calif.) Catholic quarterback Johnny Stanton announces his top five to Badger Nation.

MADISON - After returning from a trip out to Oregon roughly two weeks ago, Santa Margarita (Calif.) Catholic quarterback Johnny Stanton got to the point that he didn't really want any more scholarship offers, as the 6-2, 205-pound athlete was ready to start narrowing his list and making a decision.

The University of Wisconsin on Friday showed that one more scholarship offer wouldn't hurt.

Arriving on campus Thursday night, Stanton and his family toured the university before meeting with Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema and his staff on Friday; a meeting that earned Stanton another impressive offer.

"It's a very cool city," Stanton told Badger Nation. "It's a great college town. It's a reason why it's one of the best college towns in the nation. I can see how everybody can be out tailgating before the games and having a good time.

"Coach Buh and coach Canada were the ones that walked us around and gave us a tour of the facilities. We got to see the plans for the new weight room and the new scoreboard, got to walk around the new field and I came away very impressed. I was very impressed with the players on the team and the way they seem to handle themselves."

Wisconsin had been building its dialogue with Stanton – a three-star quarterback ranked No.42 in the country by – since the spring. Admitting that contact with the Badgers died off, Stanton said the Badgers started talking to him more a couple weeks ago to try to get him to one of their high school summer camps.

"I wasn't able to go to that, but they wanted me to come up and see the campus," Stanton said. "The scholarship offer wasn't a surprise because coach Buh hinted that at earlier in the week, but I was definitely happy to get the offer."

Wisconsin was his 11th scholarship offer and the Badgers are in Stanton's top five heading into the middle of summer. In addition to the Badgers, Stanton lists Nebraska, Oregon, Oregon State and Utah as the schools he is still considering.

Originally the team's starting safety as a sophomore, Stanton became the full-time quarterback last season and threw for 2,439 yards and 13 touchdowns with eight interceptions. Stanton also rushed for 1,528 yards and 25 touchdowns and led the Eagles to the CIF-SS Pac-5 title and the CIF State D-I title.

"I've improved a lot on my passing in the offseason," said Stanton. "Last season I wasn't as accurate in my passing as I would have hoped. I've been able to work a lot on my accuracy and my reads and I have gotten a lot better. I think that my passing is one of my strengths where my running was my strength last year.

"We had a lot of injuries in our wide receiver corps, so we had to rely on the run a lot more than we normally would have. My running numbers might seem inflated compared to my passing numbers, but I think this year we'll be able to pass a lot more. Our receivers have another year experience and I think we'll be able to do a lot more things in the passing game than a year ago."

Stanton's plan is to make his commitment before the start of his senior season in order to put the stress behind him and focus on his game.

"I am not putting myself on a timeline," Stanton said. "I want to make the decision when I know it's right, when I am sure about the school I want to go to. It's obviously a hard decision, so I want to go through the process."

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