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Friday, March 2, 2012
Hammock to oversee Badgers recruiting

By Brian Bennett

Wisconsin assistant Thomas Hammock interviewed for a job with the St. Louis Rams recently. But he ended up staying with the Badgers, and now Hammock has an added responsibility on Bret Bielema's staff.

The running backs coach will serve as Wisconsin's recruiting coordinator, according to a story by Mike Lucas on the school's website. Former assistant Joe Rudolph, who left to join Paul Chryst's staff at Pittsburgh, used to have that title. Bielema told the website that he was impressed with how Hammock performed on the recruiting trail in January, when the Badgers were a little shorthanded after several assistants left for other jobs.

Hammock, 30, is in his second year as a Badgers coach. He played at Northern Illinois, rushing for more than 1,000 yards in 2000. He also spent four seasons on Minnesota's staff.

Bielema also told the Badgers site that the program would explore some new recruiting areas based on the backgrounds of their new assistants. Linebackers coach Andy Buh will work in the St. Louis area and in Texas. New secondary coach Ben Strickland will handle in-state recruiting as well as Atlanta. Wide receivers coach Zach Azzanni will have most of Ohio, offensive line coach Mike Markuson will have Minnesota and tight ends coach Eddie Faulkner will take Indiana, Michigan and Cleveland. New offensive coordinator Matt Canada will recruit around the Midwest and specifically handle all quarterbacks.