Forward recruit Cody Strang, who had signed a letter of intent to play hockey for the Wisconsin Badgers starting in the fall of 2011 informed the Sixty Minutes blog tonight that he will not be joining the team next season as he did not meet the requirements set by the NCAA Clearinghouse.
It had been known for weeks in the inner circles around the program that Strang's eligibility was in question and tonight Strang gave us the unfortunate news. Disappointing news for Strang, the program, as well as the fans who are getting cheated out of watching a very talented player suit up for the Badgers.
Strang was very up front about the situation and he indicated to me that it was a GPA issue that caused him to not pass the clearinghouse. Looking at the NCAA Clearinghouse website, they have a sliding scale that incorporates GPA and the test scores (ACT or SAT) to determine your eligibility.
Strang also talked about his future plans, "I can't play next season. Not sure if I'm going to enroll at UW or not. I might end up playing Division 3." Strang would not be eligible to return to the USHL next season as he was born in 1990 and will be too old next season. Strang later indicated to me that he's looking at UW-Stevens Point as a possible destination next year.
Strang, who is having a bounce back season was named to the USHL All-Star team this season. The former Madison Edgewood standout is second on the Youngstown Phantoms in scoring and has developed into a great two way forward in the USHL.
Strang is the second Wisconsin recruit who was scheduled to join the program for 2011 that will not due to academics. A few months ago news broke that Troy Hesketh, a defensmean from Minnetonka, Minnesota would not be admitted to the University. Hesketh has not yet committed to another school.
The Badgers currently have three other forward recruits lined up for for next fall. Brendan Woods (Muskegon, USHL), Matt Paape (Sioux City, USHL), and Tyler Lapic (Chicago, USHL) are set to join defensemen Patrick Daly (Benilde-St. Margarets, MN HS) and Jake McCabe (NTDP), as well as goaltender Joel Rumpel (Penticton, BCHL) next season.
The Badgers lose 3 senior forwards, Podge Turnbull, Sean Dolan, and Patrick Johnson and there is obviously the potential to lose more due to early departures. There is no word yet on if Wisconsin will recruit another forward for 2011 or go with the bodies they have. The only other committed forward who could be brought in is Waupaca senior forward Brad Navin. Navin is currently coming off of an MCL injury and it's unlikely at this point that the Badgers would bring him in straight out of Wisconsin high school.
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