Darboh Gets the Right Impression

The impression from the outside world is that the University of Wisconsin is school for big offensive linemen and running backs, a school where talented receiver's skills wouldn't be put to good use. West Des Moines' Amara Darboh has heard the rumors, and he's seen firsthand how they are absolutely wrong.

MADISON – A low scoring spring game isn't always the best formula to make a good impression on a highly-rated offensive weapon.

Good thing for Wisconsin in its recruitment of Amara Darboh that the Badgers already had the talented receiver on campus for last year's offensive showcase.

Darboh, a junior at West Des Moines (IA) Dowling High, had already camped at Wisconsin last season, but got a real sense of what the Badgers' environment is all about when he took an unofficial visit to the game against Ohio State last season.

"That game showed me how much love the fans have for the team there," Darboh, who also went to the Iowa game the year before, told Badger Nation. "It was great to see the team compete against the No.1 team in the country and come out with the win. It was a great game."

Offered by Wisconsin last fall, the 6-foot-2, 200-pound Darboh, rated a four-star prospect and the 25th-best receiver in the country by Scout.com, didn't get the same type of atmosphere during Saturday's spring game, but he got the same positive impressions before and after the game from the Wisconsin coaching staff.

"It was good to get to know more about the coaches, the offensive system and the team overall," Darboh said. "The spring practice, I know there weren't too many big plays, but I liked that they tried to pass the ball, keep their offensive style and keep the ball moving."

Although having lengthy conversations with UW head coach Bret Bielema, receivers coach DelVaughn Alexander and offensive coordinator Paul Chryst on Saturday, Darboh's main source of Wisconsin's offense is coming from co-defensive coordinator Chris Ash, who is his recruiting contact.

"We have a relationship that is pretty good," Darboh said. "We talk pretty much every week. He tells me about their balanced offense and tells me that although people say they are just a run team that they like to pass the ball, too, and how good running backs can help out the receivers. All the coaches told me that I could fit in there and told me not to believe everything that is said about them from an outside perspective."

The fact was reinforced in Wisconsin's 31-18 win over the Buckeyes. Although the Badgers' running game rushed for 184 yards and scored the offense's three touchdowns, it was the passing game that helped balance the offense, as six different players caught passes for a total of 152 yards.

"I saw how they tried to get Nick Toon the ball and a number of times they caught the defense off guard with their passing plays," Darboh said. "They ran the ball a lot and that set up the offense for some big plays."

Starting playing competitive football until he was middle school, learning the game from watching it on television, Darboh recorded nearly 50 catches in 2010, racking up 648 yards and six touchdowns. The Maroons finished 14-0 last season, winning the Iowa State 4A championship.

"I was happy with how we fought as a team, never gave up and winning the state championship game," Darboh said. "When my team needed me to make plays, I stepped up and made some plays at the end."

Darboh, who runs the 4x100, 4x200 and the 200m, isn't planning on anymore visits until after his track season. Holding offers from Florida, Iowa, Iowa State, Kansas State, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Texas, Notre Dame and Vanderbilt, Darboh has only has had a chance to visit Iowa State, Notre Dame and Wisconsin, something he plans to rectify this summer.

"I want to check out more campuses and learn more about the programs to see if I can fit in," Darboh said. "I would like to take some official visits in the fall, but narrow my list by the fall."

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