Hirschfeld Returns to Madison

One of a handful of verbal commits to make the trip to Madison, Hartland (WI) Arrowhead defensive end Billy Hirschfeld recaps his unofficial visit for Wisconsin's season opener.

The first official commitment to Wisconsin under new head coach Gary Andersen, Hartland (WI) Arrowhead defensive end Billy Hirschfeld suffered a bitter team loss on Friday night, but didn't let that ruin his mood on another unofficial visit to Madison Saturday, getting a chance to see the Badgers win their season opener against UMass.

"It was great," Hirschfeld told BadgerNation regarding his unofficial visit. "I got there a little later and talk to mostly Dominic Cizauskas and Alec Kocour. I also ate with them and we were all talking about our games the other night. (Recruiting assistant) Charlie Drewek took us out on to the field and then we went to our seats. Afterwards, we took a tour of the weight room because I wanted to show my trainer Brad Arnett and his son Ethan Arnett how it is."

While the 6-5, 270-pound physical defensive end didn't get to interact with the coaching staff, he did give high reviews on how Wisconsin looked in its opening game.

"The coaching staff did an amazing job," said Hirschfeld. "The offense was a little slow at first, but as soon as they handed the ball off to James White and Melvin Gordon, then they started rolling. Defensively they did great. The defensive line was putting pressure on the quarterback every play and the secondary did their jobs. The Badgers looked great out there today. I just can't wait to be a Badger.

"I want to go up to Madison as much as I can this year to see the team play and to keep building that relationship I have with the coaching staff."

After cruising in its opener against Kenosha Bradford, Hirschfeld and defending division 1 state champion Arrowhead struggled Friday against Mequon Homestead and ultimately lost, 13-7. Seeing their 13-game win streak snapped, Hirschfeld said the loss signals that the group has to work harder as they transition into conference play.

"We had a rough loss last night against Homestead," said Hirschfeld. "This was an eye opener for us as a team. We know now that we aren't that same team as last year. This is a new team and we need to focus and work hard in practice in order to be a great team."

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