Quarterback Dustin Sherer has arguably one of the biggest decisions of his life already tucked away.
The senior at Hamilton Heights High School in Hamilton Heights, Ind., can relax and enjoy his senior campaign without the pressure of selecting a school after he gave Wisconsin a verbal commitment at the beginning of July.
"It takes the pressure off of you," said Sherer, who threw for 2,216 yards and 17 touchdowns and ran for nine as a junior. "You can sit there and you can think about your senior football season and not worry about where you get to go to college and stuff. It takes a lot off your back and things kind of quiet down a little bit. It's just nice to know that you can go play for the next level because then again, you've got one more year of senior high school football left."
When the 6-foot-4, 205-pound Sherer arrives at Wisconsin, he will become one of many young quarterbacks fighting to become the signal caller like members of a royal family clamoring for the throne. He knows, realistically, that he will probably redshirt and that is OK with him.
"I assume I probably am going to be (redshirted)," Sherer said. "Not totally sure Coach (Rob) Ianello indicated that I would but, I mean, they've got a couple of quarterbacks ahead of me, so I figured I probably would just because, if someone gets hurt, they at least have quarterbacks that can still play."
Sherer said he chose Wisconsin out of a pool that included Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Ball State, Western Michigan, Bowling Green and Cincinnati because he liked the campus, the tradition, the academics and the coaches. The competition at quarterback naturally factored into his decision.
"Coach ‘I' said that if I compete and I do well, then I could probably start by my sophomore year, so that was a plus," Sherer said. "I didn't really have any program tell me that but it made me feel kind of good about it as far as playing time. I think it's a pretty good situation I'm walking into."
Sherer also said Wisconsin is finished recruiting quarterbacks, unless they seek out athletes who could play at other positions.
"They're done, unless they, I think they have a couple that they're going to recruit as athletes, I think," Sherer said. "So far, they're only going to take one."
Now, Sherer gets to spend his senior season focusing on football without the college decision staring him down. He and his team are aiming to be Indiana state champions by the end of the season, which is a pretty realistic goal, given that his team advanced to the semifinals last year and returns most of its top players.
"We have all the talent to go win state or go to at least play for state so I'm really excited about it," Sherer said. "We lose a couple key players, a pretty good fullback and a tight end, so those were really the key guys that we lose. … We return a lot of kids, I want to say about seven or eight offensively and probably about six or seven defensively, I'd say."
For now, Sherer is focusing on two-a-day practices and the upcoming season, which begins Aug. 20; and on the season, which he said would be deemed a success if Hamilton Heights advances to state.
"We don't want to be the senior class that lets everybody down," Sherer said. "That's our goal coming out. First, we want to win our conference, of course, but then our main objective this year is to go to state and try to get there to compete with Bishop Chatard (High School), the powerhouse in Indiana, try to beat them."
Jonathan Linder contributed to this report.
Sherer excited for senior season and beyond
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