premium-icon
football Edit

Commitment 101: Cade McDonald

The Wisconsin Badgers added in-state defensive end Cade McDonald to their 2020 recruiting class Monday. Here's what McDonald's commitment means for head coach Paul Chryst moving forward.



Skillset 

Getting a chance to see McDonald live at camp Saturday, the first thing that stood out was his size and frame. The projected defensive end is all of his listed height of 6-foot-6, and he's a lean 240 pounds with plenty of room to add good weight. He was often the first participant in drills in front of assistant coach Inoke Breckterfield, and he showed well against tackle commit Jack Nelson and top 2021 target Riley Mahlman, among others from a strong offensive line group.

McDonald is still a fairly raw prospect who needs to continue to get stronger, but he's athletic and possesses the bend and flexibility necessary for an edge player. Unlike other players the Badgers have landed in past cycles who could play outside linebacker or grow into a defensive end, McDonald is pegged to start with his hand in the ground.

"He's long and the gap schemes that Wisconsin plays with should work well with Cade," Neil Hatfield, Hudson's defensive coordinator, told BadgerBlitz.com. "He plays a traditional 4i technique for us and their scheme is a little different. But it will be an easy transition for him. The intangible pieces and him being so easy to coach, that won't be a problem. He's very good at separating from defenders and getting off the blocks. It will play really well once he develops at Wisconsin.

"Physically, there's easily 40 or 50 pounds you can throw on him and he can carry it well. He's cut extremely well right now and with his frame, he is going to play at a high level. His upside is huge and there is a lot of ceiling left."

Consistent with most athletes the staff covets, McDonald is a multi-sport participant who also excels in lacrosse. He played basketball up until his sophomore year before he decided to focus on just two sports. With that, you saw really good footwork Saturday and the ability to compete at a high level for three-plus hours in a variety of drills. McDonald's makeup reminds his coaches of two former Badgers who had a great deal of success in Madison.

"His best football is ahead of him," Hatfield said. "The things you can measure at a camp, he did all that. But I think they started to see things that you can't really measure. With Cade, his work ethic is off the charts. He's a meticulous person and it's scary to how similar he is to (former Hudson offensive linemen) Eric Vanden Heuvel and Kraig Urbik, who both played for the Badgers. All of them are 6-foot-6 and bigger and all of them were good students with great work ethics."

Inoke Breckterfield (center)
Inoke Breckterfield (center) (Darren Lee/BadgerBlitz.com Photographer)

Immediate Impact 

Wisconsin Defensive Ends on Projected 2020 Roster
Player Eligibility (2020) High school star ranking

Isaiahh Loudermilk

Redshirt senior

Garrett Rand

Redshirt senior

Matt Henningsen

Redshirt junior

C.J. Goetz

Redshirt sophomore

*Michael Balistreri

Redshirt junior

Isaiah Mullens

Redshirt sophomore

Boyd Dietzen

Redshirt sophomore

Gio Paez

Redshirt freshman

*Indicates a preferred walk-on
premium-icon
PREMIUM CONTENT

You must be a member to read the full article. Subscribe now for instant access to all premium content.

  • icn-check-mark Created with Sketch.
    Members-only forums
  • icn-check-mark Created with Sketch.
    Predict prospect commits with FanFutureCast
  • icn-check-mark Created with Sketch.
    Exclusive highlights and interviews
  • icn-check-mark Created with Sketch.
    Exclusive coverage of Rivals Camp Series
  • icn-check-mark Created with Sketch.
    Breaking recruiting news