Another Madison Memorial Spartan, a young guard with the interesting name of Vander Blue, is set to join the UW men's basketball team. Not for this coming fall, and not for the fall of 2009 . . . no, for the year after that. Yes, Blue is a high school sophomore. Though he's already 6 foot 3, and was voted to the all-tournament team at state this year, he doesn't turn 16 until this summer. Yet he's already decided where he's going to go to college. Pretty ridiculous. Were you decided on your post-high school future at age 15? High profile athletes grow up pretty fast in some ways. Maybe I shouldn't be so shocked. Others have noted that Michael Flowers, Greg Stiemsma, and JP Gavinski all committed at around the same time in their prep careers.
Instead of projecting two and a half years into the future, let's consider this possibility-- Blue's early acceptance indicates that Wisconsin's "yield rate" is getting stronger and stronger. By that I mean that kids who are offered Wisconsin basketball scholarships seem increasingly likely to accept, recognizing the strength and stability of the program, and the quality of the university. Of course, a higher yield on scholarship offers could also reflect the staff being more judicious with offers, and, perhaps, more conservative. Who knows? All I know is that if the UW staff thought enough of this 15-year old young man to offer him a scholarship, I'm glad he accepted. Even if he is a Spartan.
(Disclaimer-- 80% of the posters on this site are alumni of Madison West High School.)