Sanborn emerging as Wisconsin’s next do-everything linebacker

Last year, only five “true” freshman played in more than five games, meaning they couldn’t be redshirted.

Linebacker Jack Sanborn was one of those five, but was mainly used in a backup role. He played in 11 games wit no starts and had just seven tackles, four of those coming against Illinois. Sanborn didn’t record a statistic in Wisconsin’s final four games, his last tackle coming Nov. 3 vs. Rutgers.

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Things are a little different in 2019.

With T.J. Edwards gone, Sanborn has started all three of Wisconsin’s games as one of the inside linebackers. While he was relatively quiet his first two games, Sanborn came up strong in the Badgers’ biggest game of the year thus far.

Against Michigan, he had seven tackles, which tied for the team high, including a team-high five solo. Sanborn had two tackles for loss, including a sack of Shea Patterson which put the Wolverines near their own goal line. Michigan would eventually punt, giving Wisconsin good field position and the Badgers would score two plays later to make it 28-0.

Sanborn also had a forced fumble (OK, he jarred it from offensive lineman Jon Runyan, but it still counts).

Sanborn also had an interception against Central Michigan as well as a quarterback hurry.

While Edwards is tough to replace, Sanborn is showing early on he might just be the next in line of in the role Wisconsin’s do-everything linebacker.

Here’s the complete rundown of the young Badgers after three games:

“TRUE” FRESHMEN
Keeanu Benton, NT
South Florida: 2 tackles (solo), TFL
Central Michigan: Started, 1 tackle (solo), TFL
Michigan: Started, 1 tackle, QBH

 

Clay Cundiff, TE
South Florida: Did not play
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: Did not play

 

Leo Chenal, LB
South Florida: 5 tackles (3 solo)
Central Michigan: 4 tackles (4 solo)
Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic

 

Updates On Former Badgers

Semar Melvin, CB
South Florida: 1 tackle (solo)
Central Michigan: Did not play
Michigan: Did not play

 

Graham Mertz, QB
South Florida: Did not play
Central Michigan: 4-of-5 passing, 35 yards
Michigan: Did not play

 

Have not played
Peter Bowden, LS; Stephan Bracey, WR; Logan Brown, OL; Dante Caputo, S; Julius Davis, RB; Jordan DiBenedetto, WR; Quan Easterling, FB; Dean Engram, CB; Tatum Grass, LB; Rodas Johnson, DE; Jackson Kollath, LB; Spencer Lytle, LB; Cooper Nelson, QR; Maema Njongmeta, LB; Logan O’Brien, OL; Gio Paez, NT; Cam Phillips, WR; Hayden Rucci, TE; Joe Tippmann, OL; Titus Toler, LB; Blake Wilcox, K; James Williams, CB.

 

REDSHIRT FRESHMEN
A.J. Abbott, WR
South Florida: Did not play
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic

 

Donte Burton, CB
South Florida: Played, did not record a statistic
Central Michigan: 1 tackle (solo)
Michigan: PBU

 

BADGERS DATABASES

Boyd Dietzen, DE
South Florida: Played, did not record a statistic
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic

 

Jack Eschenbach, TE
South Florida: Played, did not record a statistic
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: Did not play

 

Jaylan Franklin, OLB
South Florida: 1 tackle (solo), sack, TFL
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic

 

Michael Furtney, OL
South Florida: Played, did not record a statistic
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic

 

C.J. Goetz, DE
South Florida: Played, did not record a statistic
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic

 

Isaiah Mullens, DE
South Florida: Played, did not record a statistic
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic

 

Taj Mustapha, WR
South Florida: Did not play
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: Did not play

 

Reggie Pearson, S
South Florida: Started, 1 tackle (solo), FF
Central Michigan: Started, did not record a statistic
Michigan: Started, 3 tackles (2 solo), .5 TFL, FF

 

Cormac Sampson, OL
South Florida: Did not play
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic

 

Brady Schipper, RB
South Florida: Did not play
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic

 

Alexander Smith, CB
South Florida: Played, did not record a statistic
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic

 

Jack Torchio, S
South Florida: Played, did not record a statistic
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: INT, PBU

 

Nakia Watson, RB
South Florida: 14 rush, 80 yards, TD
Central Michigan: 8 rush, 29 yards, TD; 1 catch, 0 yards
Michigan: 13 rush, 31 yards

 

Chase Wolf, QB
South Florida: Played, did not record a statistic
Central Michigan: 1-for-1 passing, 2 yards
Michigan: Did not play


Have not played
Travian Blaylock, CB; Nate Carter, QB; Mike Gregoire, WR; Isaac Guerendo, RB; Jacob Heyroth, ILB; Andrew Lyons, OL; Conor Schlichting, P; Marty Strey, OLB.

 

“TRUE” SOPHOMORES

John Chenal, FB
South Florida: 1 rush, 2 yards; 1 catch, 12 yards; 1 tackle (solo), FF
Central Michigan: 3 rush, 11 yards; 1 catch, 2 yards
Michigan: 2 rush, 5 yards, TD

 

Aron Cruickshank, WR
South Florida: 1 kick return, 23 yards
Central Michigan: 1 catch, 19 yards; 2 punt returns, 14 yards
Michigan: 1 kick return, 11 yards

 

Jack Sanborn, LB
South Florida: Started, 5 tackles (2 solo)
Central Michigan: Started, 1 tackle, INT, QBH
Michigan: Started, 7 tackles (5 solo), 2 TFL, sack, FF

 

Rachad Wildgoose, CB
South Florida: 2 tackles (solo)
Central Michigan: Played, did not record a statistic
Michigan: PBU

 

Bryson Williams, NT
South Florida: 1 tackle (solo)
Central Michigan: Did not play
Michigan: Did not play

 

Dave Heller is the author of Ken Williams: A Slugger in Ruth’s Shadow (a Larry Ritter Book Award nominee), Facing Ted Williams – Players From the Golden Age of Baseball Recall the Greatest Hitter Who Ever Lived and As Good As It Got: The 1944 St. Louis Browns