Locking Down the Badger State

It's safe to say that the Wisconsin coaching staff is going after and locking up the top talent in the Badger State before the summer camp season even starts. One day after offering and getting a commitment from Waunakee's Austin Maly, Fond du Lac St. Mary's Springs athlete Eric Steffes is the newest UW commit.

MADISON - After a period of silence the Badgers have finally broken through with consecutive day with commitments. Yesterday Austin Maly, Waunakee HS (WI), gave his commitment to Wisconsin, and today it was Eric Steffes of Fon Du Lac St. Mary's Springs (WI).

Steffes received a few scholarship offers in the past 24 hours from Illinois State, Eastern Illinois, and then Wisconsin.

"Yesterday I was at school and my head coach came and got me out of class," Steffes said. "He took me down to the AD's office and said we had to make a phone call. I called up Coach Bostad and he gave the phone to Coach Bielema and he kind of put me on the spot."

It took Steffes just under 24 hours to commit to the Badgers.

"After thinking, even if anyone else had offered me, I don't think I would have been interested in anyone else over Wisconsin, so I went ahead and committed," Steffes said. "It was kind of a dream come true."

Steffes was also receiving interest from Minnesota, Northwestern, Iowa State, Central Michigan, and Northern Iowa.

The Badgers are recruiting Steffes as an athlete. They feel like he can play tight end, defensive end, or fullback.

The 6-foot 5, 225 pound junior showed off his versatility last season recording 16 catches, 313 yards, and six touchdowns as a tight end earning honorable mention all-state honors.

However, the awards don't stop on the offensive side of the ball. Steffes was named second team all-state and Flyway Conference Defensive Player of the Year as a defensive end.

Once the Badgers made the call it was easy to see was Wisconsin was the choice.

"On the football end, I mean yeah, it's a great school," Steffes explained. "It's not all just football, Wisconsin is a great school for academics, too."

Steffes will return to familiar territory in 2011. His Fond Du Lac St. Mary's Springs team won the D5 state title on the Camp Randall turf last fall.

"I'm looking forward to Camp Randall," Steffes said. "I think that will be awesome playing in front of all those fans, considering I would know a bunch of the people that are out there. I think that will be awesome. Just the whole experience will be awesome."

Steffes joins Maly, Jake Keefer, and Sam Arneson as class of 2011 commitments for the Badgers, all of which are from the state of Wisconsin.

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