football Edit

Wisconsin adds preferred walk-on Andrew Lyons to 2018 class

Wisconsin added its third preferred walk-on in the 2018 class Wednesday evening when in-state offensive lineman Andrew Lyons committed to the Badgers.

"It is every Wisconsin kids' dream to play for the Badgers," Lyons told "The moment they offered me a spot on the team, I knew it was something special that I would take very serious.

Andrew Lyons
Andrew Lyons

"I was told I would be the only offensive lineman to receive a preferred walk-on offer in the 2018 class, which made me realize that it isn’t something to take for granted. Again, it was a dream of mine growing up my entire life. Since I only started playing football my freshman year in high school, I know there is nowhere to go but up in my future, and I believe that with the help from the coaches I can compete with anybody."

Lyons, a 6-foot-5, 285-pound senior from Kenosha Bradford High School, joins Matry Strey and John Chenal as walk-on commits for UW in the current cycle. Wisconsin will likely sign just scholarship offensive lineman - three-star Michael Furtney - in 2018.

"Coach (Joe) Rudolph, who I told the news to, was very excited to hear my decision," Lyons said. "He said he really loved how much I continuously improved through every year of high school and believes I can only get better from here."

Lyons chose UW over a scholarship from Western Illinois and interest from a handful of other programs.

"It was very hard to turn down scholarship money," Lyons said. "Coming out of college debt free is a huge advantage for anyone’s future. In the end, though, I know that if I work as hard as I know I can I will hopefully end up on scholarship here.

"It feels incredible to make my decision. The process was very stressful, never knowing what was going to happen, but I am very glad that I am decided and know what my future has in store."

Added Red Devils' head coach Matt Rizzo: "I am very happy for Andrew. He deserves all good things. He’s a tremendous competitor, great leader and knows what it means to be a student-athlete. He’s truly the epitome of a blue collar, hard-hat, lunch pail kind of kid.

"In my opinion, I think that’s what Wisconsin sees in Andrew, and why this is a great fit for him. At the end of day, whatever he decides or wherever he ends up, he’s going to be a program-first kind of guy, a great teammate, and come in and compete every day."