For Division I college recruiters, the top seniors at Oak Creek this fall are offensive tackle Matt Trinko (6-foot-8 ½, 303 pounds) and linebacker Mike Wey (6-3, 230). Wide receiver Carl Hanson (6-2, 175) and defensive end Sam Fucile (6-2 ½, 225) are also on the radar.
Illinois and Notre Dame were expected to visit Oak Creek Wednesday, Koch said in a telephone interview Tuesday evening. Other visitors have included Wisconsin, Michigan State, Michigan, Iowa, Minnesota, Indiana, Tennessee, Arkansas, Northern Illinois, Ball State, Western Michigan, Illinois State, North Dakota State and Nebraska-Omaha, among others.
No member of the Oak Creek contingent has received a scholarship offer yet, but summer football camps and the evaluation period could change that sooner rather than later for Trinko and Wey.
"[Schools] like Trinko on film the way he runs, his feet and stuff," Koch said. "Then when they come in and see how big he's gotten, he's really worked hard this offseason, not just his lifting but his running and everything.
"He's really improved himself a ton. He's going to have a great year next year."
Trinko plans to attend a three-day camp at Wisconsin this summer.
"If he does well there they will probably offer him right after the camp," Koch said. "They've already told him that. They already indicated and told him that straight up. They just want to see if he's got a little bit of a nasty streak in him and he can take hard coaching."
"I know Trinko loves Wisconsin," Koch said.
Wey also likes Wisconsin, Koch said, but Oak Creek's leading tackler from a year ago is drawing more fervent interest from other schools.
Said Koch: "[The Badgers] are recruiting him but it seems like other schools like Michigan who have the real need for an inside backer; they just flat out said straight out, ‘This is the kind of guy we are looking for right here.'
"Iowa just loves him. And Notre Dame is in the same boat."
Wey plans to attend the same UW camp that Trinko and about eight other Oak Creek players are taking part in, but he may just stay for one day in an effort to attend other camps, Koch said.
Wey, who Koch said runs a 4.5 40-yard dash, played inside linebacker last fall, but will likely move to the outside this season. He could also serve as a rush end, as Travis Beckum did a year ago.
"I guess maybe need-wise [The Badgers] were looking at other areas to really hit," Koch said. "But I think when they saw him in person then they were kind of like, ‘Maybe we can't pass this one up.' I know (co-linebackers) coach (Brian) Murphy likes him a ton but… They haven't tipped their hand."
The Big Ten programs are generally taking a wait-and-see attitude toward Hanson, Koch said. An impressive athlete, Hanson registered the second best long jump (23-5) among Wisconsin preps last year.
"Carl Hanson, if he plays well early in the season or goes to camp and does well he could be a Division I kid because he has all the vitals," Koch said. "He's a track guy that we got out (for football). But has a little bit on tape that catches everybody's eye because… He's got legitimate speed, jumping ability, all that stuff. He just has to put it together, which he probably will. He's a guy [colleges] will look at real quick next year, a quick evaluation on film the first two games and go from there."
At 6-2 ½, 225, Fucile may be a bit on the short side for a Big Ten defensive end, Koch said, but he caught Ball State's eye.
"He's really fast and he's really put together," Koch said. "He looks like Arnold Schwarzenegger. He's huge. He looks bigger (than 225). He grew up in New Zealand as a young kid playing that Australian football and rugby and all that. He can do like back flips and stuff and (he is) just really athletic. So the Ball State coach happened to come into the school when he was lifting and saw him doing all these crazy things and it was like, ‘Whoa, look at that guy!'
"He's a player. When you watch him on television, he's a good player. But they want them a little bit taller and longer (for the Big Ten). But for some of the MAC schools and some of the other schools he's an intriguing prospect."