There sure is a great excitement surrounding the future of Wisconsin Badgers football. New head coach Luke Fickell has garnered some big-name recruits, namely Oklahoma transfer quarterback Nick Evers and four-star quarterback Mabrey Mattauer. Earlier this month, senior safety John Torchio was named First-Team All Big-Ten. Many have assumed that Torchio will leave the program for the NFL Draft after this season is over. Torchio, however, has left the door open for a return in his final year of eligibility.
John Torchio left the door open for a return in 2023. Said he'd announce something after the game…#Badgers
— Evan Flood (@Evan_Flood) December 26, 2022
Having Torchio back would be a major boost for the up-and-coming Badgers. Despite all of the excitement for the program’s future, it is important to temper expectations. Rome was not built in a day, but it sure does seem like Wisconsin is headed in the right direction. Keeping a senior defender, who was coached by the beloved Jim Leonhard, would go a long way into sustaining some continuity with the players.
John Torchio at Wisconsin
Senior safety John Torchio has played for the Wisconsin Badgers since 2019. As a freshman, he appeared in four games and registered his first interception. After playing just two games in 2020, Torchio exploded as a junior in 2021. That season, he played in 11 games and registered 35 total tackles. He also had 0.5 sacks and three interceptions.
This past season, Torchio had 51 tackles, 1.0 sacks, and five interceptions. He returned two of these interceptions for touchdowns, including one for 100 yards. His five interceptions were second in the Big Ten while his interception return yards and touchdowns were first.
This is the kind of talent that could go a long way in helping Fickell transition the team into a new era. In any case, we will not have to wait long for Torchio’s decision.