From the moment he raced for a touchdown in the 5A state championship game on a kickoff return against Kissimmee Osceola, St. Thomas Aquinas linebacker Conor O’Neill became a household name among recruiters.
This gifted athlete had become the heart and soul of this Raider program that reached the No. 1 spot in the country. His hard work and leadership became a trademark for a football team that continues to get better every week. On Monday, after talking things over with his family and coaches, the 6-1, 190-pounder made his decision.
“It’s Wisconsin, O’Neill said. “It came down to Clemson, Auburn and Wisconsin, and in the end, the Badgers were the right fit for me.”
O’Neill, who was also a first team Miami Herald baseball selection last spring, felt that with the direction that coach Brett Bilema and the Badgers were headed, he wanted to be a part of it. Wisconsin also hinted that O’Neill could come in and compete for playing time next year.
“The education, football program and environment all sold me,” O’Neill said. “This is a huge relief for me to get this selection done so I can focus fully on the season.”