The Wisconsin Badgers made a splash when they signed five receivers in their recruiting class of 2014.
However, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, that group is down to three.
Chris Jones of Baltimore didn’t meet University of Wisconsin academic standards and enrolled at Toledo. Dareian Watkins of Galion, Ohio, returned home because of family issues.
Badgers wide receivers coach Chris Beatty accepted Jones’ fate.
“We have high standards at Wisconsin and that is a good thing,” Beatty said. “That is what makes Wisconsin Wisconsin and what makes the Big Ten the Big Ten.”
Reserve safety Nate Hammon also left the program, citing leg injuries. He played 12 games and had 20 tackles.
Backup nose guard Bryce Gilbert—expected to be No. 2 on the depth chart—left the program to transfer to another program.
Gilbert’s departure could hurt the rotation on the Badgers’ defensive front. Behind projected starter Warren Herring now appears to be sophomore Arthur Goldberg, who didn’t record a tackle as a redshirt freshman in 2013.
Three receivers are still on their way in—Krenwick Sanders of Jesup, Ga.; George Rushing of Miramar, Fla.; and Natrell Jamerson of Ocala, Fla.
The Badgers lost their top two receivers from a year ago. Jared Abbrederis, who caught 78 passes for 1,081 yards and seven touchdowns, was drafted by the Green Bay Packers, and tight end Jacob Pedersen graduated after a 39-reception, three-touchdown campaign.
The leading returning receiver for Wisconsin is sophomore Alex Erickson, who had nine receptions for 127 yards as a redshirt freshman a year ago.
There are four other players from 2013 who had eligibility remaining but won’t be back this season: defensive back Hugs Etienne, linebacker Jake Rademacher, punter Brett Nethery and tight end/offensive lineman Alex Walker.