Tolzien is Scout.com's No. 70 quarterback prospect for the class of 2006 and one of two signal-callers that the Badgers signed Wednesday.
Tolzien also plays basketball at Fremd and played baseball his whole life until last spring, when he chose to join the track team to work on his speed for football. He reported a 225-pound bench press max, an estimated 350-pound squat max, and a 4.85-second 40-yard dash.
Also an excellent student, Tolzien is 15th in a class of more than 700 students. He has a 3.9 grade-point average and scored a 24 on his ACT. He plans to major in sports medicine or secondary education, with the purpose of becoming a football coach.
Wisconsin's recruitment of Tolzien was unique in that he clearly wanted to be a Badger for some time, but the Badgers had to be sure they had a scholarship available for him. After Brent Schaeffer and Clark Harrell committed elsewhere, there was room to spare for Tolzien at quarterback. The Friday before signing day, UW came through with an offer and Tolzien committed. He had offers to several MAC programs (Kentucky had offered, but dropped him in January rather than wait to see if UW offered), and likely would have signed with Toledo had the Badgers not offered.
At Wisconsin, Tolzien will be reunited with junior tailback Jamil Walker, who also hails from Fremd and Rolling Meadows.
Badger Nation: What would you say you're most proud of from your high school career?
Scott Tolzien: "I'd say just an awesome experience. We had a real successful team. My freshman team went 9-0, my sophomore team went 9-0. Our senior year, this year we went 10-1. We had a lot of success and obviously the more success you have, the more fun you had. I think the coolest part was the relationships I developed with teammates and coaches. And there's something I'll never forget."
BN: Did you have a favorite college team growing up?
ST: "I've always been a fan of the Big Ten. I'd probably say Illinois more than any other school just because my dad went to the University of Illinois. But the Big Ten in general, I've always, bowl games and non-conference games, I've always just rooted for the Big Ten schools."
BN: Did you have a favorite athlete growing up or maybe a quarterback you liked to emulate?
ST: Brett Favre
BN: Why Favre?
ST: "Toughness, without question. He's a tough guy but I also like how he's competitive and you can always see that look in his eye. But at the same time he's joking around and he has fun with the game. One minute he'll have that competitive look on his face and the next minute, he's smiling and joking around and slapping his teammates on the head and I just admire that quality."
BN: I assume you've tried to model that yourself?
ST: "I think Favre doesn't make the best decisions on the field, like all the interceptions he throws. But just the toughness part and the fun he has with the game, I try to emulate that."
BN: You have said you expect to redshirt, and you've been playing football since you were six years old. Mentally, how do you go into a redshirt year, when you've been playing quarterback for 12 years?
ST: "Obviously the game is going to speed up so much. It's going to be real good to just take it in. Basically, it's going to be an adjusting year but I don't want to say adjusting year where I'm not going to be competitive about it or anything, like just I'm going to sit back and watch the whole year. You've got to be competitive. It's going to be a great year just to adjust to the speed and the preparation of the game as far as offseason workouts and all the schemes. It's definitely going to be a big challenge learning all of that. I think that's going to be the biggest thing."
BN: Do you have goals in mind for yourself for your tenure at Wisconsin?
ST: "Well definitely I'd like to start as soon as I can. Other than that, I want to have a good experience with college where I'm not, I don't want to have too many days where I'm complaining about this or that. (I want to be able to say) I made a great decision and I can honestly say I wouldn't have changed my decision… If I could do it all over again, I'd say I wouldn't have changed a thing."
BN: Where do you think you'll be or where do you want to be in 10 years?
ST: "It depends on what career I choose to take but definitely somewhere where when I go to work every day, I'm happy with the decision I made and I don't regret what I've done and I'm around real good people, like if I'm a teacher and a coach, to put a smile on a kid's face or teach them something new. Or also if I'm an athletic trainer, heal someone, make them feel good, boost their confidence. A job where I can go to work with a smile on my face and make that smile contagious to others."