Recruiting in Wisconsin: Nolan rookie gave Budgars to tackle five-star offensive attack


One of the highest-ranked uncapped players recruited in 2021 announced Tuesday that he plans to attend Wisconsin. Five-star offensive lineman Nolan Rookie chose the Badgers to broadcast live on Clemson, Michigan, Notre Dame and Penn State in a commitment ceremony at CBS Sports Headquarters.

According to the 247 Ports Composite Rankings, Rucci is considered the No. 14 overall prospect and No. 5 offensive tackle in the country. He is Wisconsin’s second-highest rated commitment of the 247 sports era and the program’s fifth-ever five-star commitment. Wisconsin now has 17 commitments in a class that entered the day ranked No. 17 in the nation and No. 3 in the Big Ten. Rookie is the third offensive lineman in the group.

At 6-foot-8, the rookie will be a huge presence on the offensive line for Wisconsin as she joins her brother Hayden Rookie, a redshirt freshman tight end for the Badgers. His father, Todd Rookie, played on the offensive line at Penn State and was selected by the Patriots in the second round of the 1993 NFL Draft. He played seven seasons for the franchise.

Barton Simmons, director of scouting for 247 Sports, wrote the following breakdown on the rookie:

Huge offensive line prospect with length, an athletic build and one of the more unique body types you’ll find. Plays with good knee flexion and leverage for a player of his size. Coordinated and fluid as second level inhibitors. Overcomes defenders with size and force. Finishes the block and runs his feet through contact. Is the innate punch. Length and balance to be a high end pass protector. The film does not show much pass protection. needs work. Playing with the pad level is a challenge due to body type. Competition level is not challenging. One is very raw from a technique and experience point of view but the combination of size and athleticism makes him one of the most talented offensive prospects in the 2020 class. May may not contribute in a year, but the first or second day has the look of a Power Power Five high-end starter with the NFL Draft.