"Big Country" will visit Big Ten Territory

Looking to take more offensive linemen in the 2014 recruiting class to build depth, Wisconsin will host Tacoma (WA) Fife Kaleb ‘Big Country' McGary on an unofficial visit later this month.

While most recruits are busy taking their unofficial visits this summer and naming their top choices, Tacoma (WA) Fife Kaleb McGary is taking more of a country approach to the whole recruiting process - slow and steady.

Nicknamed ‘Big Country,' the 6-8, 284-pound McGary is training a little differently than his teammates for the upcoming season. Instead of daily workouts and a plethora of camps, McGary's summer schedule is instead packed with basketball practices and tournaments for his AAU team.

"I've been doing both lifting and playing basketball this summer," McGary told Badger Nation. "I've been lifting a lot this summer and I'll keep lifting once I return from the basketball trip I'm about to go on. I've had basketball practice a lot lately so I think that's helped me with my training tremendously."

Because of that schedule, the four-star athlete – ranked the No.24 offensive tackle in the country by Fox Sports Next - hasn't had much time to take unofficial visits he originally planned for the summer, but he will visit Wisconsin during that upcoming basketball trip.

"I can't afford to go visit any schools that are too far, but I actually have a basketball tournament in Milwaukee so I plan on taking my unofficial visit to Madison then," said McGary. "The tournament is July 17-21. The exact date isn't listed when I'll be visiting, but at some point between (then) I'll be at Wisconsin.

"I have talked to the Wisconsin coaches some but not as much as other colleges have tried to. I think that's kind of a trend for the Big Ten. I've also noticed that with Nebraska. They're not as involved with their recruiting as other schools are sometimes. I've talked with one or two of the coaches from Wisconsin. I talk to defensive line coach Chad Kauha'aha'a the most and the offensive line coach T.J. Woods."

McGary has yet to start cutting down the 17 scholarship offers he has received and while he has received most of the attention from schools close to home, that doesn't mean the odds are against Wisconsin.

"It hasn't pushed me away from considering Wisconsin at all even though I don't hear from them as often," said McGary. "I do feel bad that I don't know the Wisconsin coaches better, but at the same time it's kind of nice to not always have to be talking to someone. It's kind of a double-edge sword I guess."

McGary is not quite sure about who his favorites are just yet, and he's in no rush to choose any.

"I will probably know which schools I'm going to choose for my official visits by mid-football season, but I won't start taking those until after the season," said McGary. "So I won't make a final decision until after the season. I plan on taking all the time that I need and I won't let anyone push me into a decision."

The Badgers may have to wait for McGary's decision, but if they want to try and speed up the process then they may need the assistance of head basketball coach Bo Ryan.

"There's quite a few of the schools that I've been in contact with that would be OK with me playing both football and basketball," said McGary, mentioning Oregon State, USC and Washington. "Most of the footballs coaches at the schools I'm in contact with are very open to it. I have mentioned it to Wisconsin, but I haven't had the chance to talk to them about it a lot. That's one of the questions I plan on asking when I'm there for my coming visit in a week or so."

"Big Country" has big goals when he advances to the next level, but being able to play both basketball and football in college is actually not one of them.

"My dream has always been to just go to college," said McGary. "I will be the first male in my immediate family to go to college. So that's always been my dream. If I get to the pros then that will just be about taking care of my family and the people that helped get me there."

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