Wisconsin did not need to swoon over Dustin Sherer, however, when he arrived in Madison Dec. 10. The No. 33 quarterback prospect in the class of 2005 verbally committed more than five months ago and remains keen on the Badgers.
"It went really well," Sherer said of his official visit. "Just to be able to spend time with the team and watch them practice for the bowl game, spending time with coaches and going to [head coach Barry] Alvarez' house for breakfast, which is pretty neat. Just get a lot of questions answered."
Sherer came to Madison with a purpose. He wanted to get a feel for what is like to be a student-athlete at UW, to listen and learn how the Badgers felt about their college experiences. He spent a great deal of time with his host, redshirt freshman quarterback Tyler Donovan, and with the rest of the team as well. He also singled out sophomore quarterback John Stocco and junior fullback Matt Bernstein for taking the time to share their experiences with him.
"You can tell that they all love playing football for Wisconsin, which is a good thing to hear, I guess," Sherer said. "They said a lot of good things about the school and Coach Alvarez and the rest of the coaching staff. I knew that going in there but it just kind of backs it up, it kind of confirms it, especially hearing it from the players."
When Sherer had an opportunity to watch practice, he shadowed the quarterbacks and quarterbacks coach Jeff Horton.
"It was kind of neat get in there and be so close to being able to learn that stuff," Sherer said.
The 6-foot-4, 205-pound signal caller tried to take some mental reps while watching his future teammates perform.
"As far as the drills they were doing, it was all very similar—a lot of stuff that we do at our high school and things that I feel that I can go in there and do," Sherer said. "It is just good to be able to watch them do that stuff and then know that I can do it myself."
Sherer enjoyed a strong senior season at Hamilton Heights High School in Arcadia, Ind., earning Associated Press honorable mention all-state acclaim. He completed 139 of 234 passes for 2,468 yards and 30 touchdowns, in leading Hamilton Heights to an 11-2 season. Sherer, who claims a 4.6-second 40-yard dash, also ran 69 times for 286 yards and five touchdowns.
When he arrives at Wisconsin he will be one of four scholarship quarterbacks, joining Stocco, Donovan and freshman Bryan Savage. The Badgers also boast a strong-armed walk-on, freshman Craig Meier. Freshman scholarship receiver Marcus Randle El would like a shot at quarterback as well.
Sherer to Sherer
Dustin Sherer had the good fortune to hand off and pass to his younger brother, Chad Sherer, this season. Chad Sherer, a 6-foot, 170-pound freshman, was Hamilton Heights' starting fullback this season.
"He's a heck of an athlete," Dustin Sherer said. "He's about just as big as I am. He's going to be bigger than I am and he's probably more athletic than I am…He's another Sherer that will probably go play football somewhere."
Chad Sherer ran for 425 yards and five touchdowns on 53 carries. He had two 100-yard rushing games. He also caught nine passes for 202 yards and two touchdowns. Most importantly, his blocking helped pave the way for junior tailback Tanner Picket, who ran for 1,670 yards and 26 touchdowns.
"Being a freshman fullback and blocking for our tailback…he did really well playing that tough position as a freshman," Dustin Sherer said.
Dustin Sherer is currently a forward/center on the Hamilton Heights basketball team. He has participated in baseball and track in previous springs but will leave that sports season open this year.
"I'm just going to get ready to play at Wisconsin," he said.