Wheelwright Snags Offer No.1

Although playing in Columbus, Walnut Ridge sophomore Rob Wheelwright's first BCS offer comes from another Big Ten Champion, as Wisconsin offered the 6-foot-2 receiver after the Badgers' high school camp.

MADISON - It's a big deal playing high school football in the state of Ohio, especially for Walnut Ridge HS sophomore Rob Wheelwright.

Playing his high school football in Columbus, Wheelwright set his sights at a young age to play football at the next level, the main reason he grinded through a sophomore season where, despite missing two games because of injuries, he had 18 catches for 300 yards and two receiving touchdowns. He also reports two kick returns for touchdowns.

The battle paid off this past week, as Wheelwright earned his first scholarship offer from head coach Bret Bielema and Wisconsin.

"It was a big deal," Wheelwright said. "I attended the one-day camp and after the camp, they asked me to stay another night. Coach Bielema brought me into his office, talked about my film and how I was performing in the one-on-one and the 7-on-7s and he offered me right there on the spot."

Wheelwright has been hearing from plenty of BCS schools (Cincinnati, Michigan State and Syracuse to name a few), Wisconsin is his first offer. At 6-foot-2 and 170 pounds, it seemed like a no brainer for the staff to offer the Walnut Ridge (OH) sophomore.

"I think I really did a good job at the camp" Wheelwright said. "I think I showed the coaches I could play, that I was a good athlete and I think I performed real well."

Wisconsin had been slowly recruiting Wheelwright, so much so that he didn't think he coaches had a lot of interest in him, dating back to early last season when recruiting coordinator Joe Rudolph came in to his high school to look more at Austin Traylor, the defensive end/tight end who committed to UW last November.

Despite the age difference between the two, Wheelwright and Traylor are good friends, as the two roomed together during Wheelwright's camp experience.

"He's like a bigger brother to me," Wheelwright said. "He's been really helpful to me."

Wheelwright's offer list is expected to grow during a busy summer of camps. He's camped at Cincinnati the last two seasons and is heading to Michigan State.

"I just want to work hard because even though I got the offer, there is probably still more to come," Wheelwright said. "I can't just slack off. I have to keep working hard and try to get more offers. I am pretty high on Wisconsin though. The facilities are nice, the coaches are nice and I really liked the experience there."

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