The University of Wisconsin football team has been among the most productive in the Big Ten Conference for having players drafted in recent years and it has a chance to improve on that record during this week’s NFL draft.

Over the past five years, UW is tied for third in the Big Ten, with Penn State, with 20 players drafted. Ohio State and Iowa are tied for first, with 23 players.

This projects to be one of the most successful drafts for UW players in years, with seven players — and possibly more — expected to be selected. Another four or five could sign free-agent deals.

Since the NFL draft went to seven rounds in 1994, UW had seven players drafted in 1995 and 2005 and eight in 2001.

"The class is really strong," said John Dettmann, UW's director of strength and conditioning. "It's certainly one of the best I've seen."

Dettmann will complete his 25th year at UW in January and continues to help players prepare for the draft. That includes inside linebacker Chris Borland, who is expected to be the first player from UW to be selected.

"Dettmann's the best," Borland said. "We've got the top training in the country right in our backyard. It's been awesome to work with him. He's got 30 years of knowledge and success he's passed on to us in a six-week time period."

UW has had at least one player selected in the first round in each of the past three drafts, a streak that will likely end with Thursday’s first round. Borland is projected to be a second-round pick.

Of the 14 former UW players taken in the past three drafts, seven were offensive linemen, with four picked in the first two rounds. Guard Ryan Groy will likely be the only offensive lineman taken this year, but it still shapes up to be a strong overall group.

Here's a look at where the former UW players might get drafted:

Slideshow: Badgers prospects in NFL draft

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Beau Allen didn't hide his disappointment over not being invited to the scouting combine. "I was a little perturbed by the fact I didn't go to…


  • Beat reporter for the University of Wisconsin football team.

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