Mike Bruesewitz (pronounced BRUISE-uh-wits) is a 6-7, 215-pound forward from Mendota Heights, Minn. who averaged 15.9 points and 9.8 rebounds per game as a junior. An honor roll student at Henry Sibley High School, Bruesewitz earned first-team all-conference honors and second-team all-state accolades. Last season Bruesewitz led his high school team to a 26-6 record and a runner-up finish in the Minnesota class 4A state tournament. During the state tournament he averaged 15 points and 13 rebounds per game en route to earning All-Tournament team honors.
"Mike has limitless potential, and it has shows by how he has kept improving from the day we began recruiting him," Ryan said. "He plays with a toughness and competitiveness that Badger fans will grow to love in the future. We are very excited about Mike and the future he possesses both on the court and in the classroom. He is the consummate worker who has strived hard over the last eighteen months to make himself into a high-level player.
"While always possessing a competitive fire and desire to win, he has recently made huge strides in his perimeter game out to the 3-point line. His improving perimeter ability combined with his post skills and work ethic make him a more complete player that will allow him to continue to excel when he gets to Madison. He is a huge cog in the successful resurgence of basketball at his high school. While being a great leader and teammate on Sibley's state tournament runner-up team, he has set the bar high in the classroom as well with his academic success. Our staff and I are ecstatic about having Mike, and his family, join our program."
Diamond Taylor – a 6-4, 175-pound guard from Bolingbrook, Ill. – averaged 18.6 points and 5.5 rebounds per game last year as a junior at St. Joseph High School in Westchester, Ill. Taylor shot 48 percent from the field, including 39 percent from behind the 3-point arc and 74 percent from the free throw line. Taylor was named East Suburban Catholic Conference Player of the Year as a junior and earned first-team all-conference honors as well. Prior to his senior year, Taylor transferred to hometown Bolingbrook High School where he will play for the Raiders beginning this season.
"Diamond and the Taylor family have been a joy to get to know over the last few years," Ryan commented. "It has been neat to watch Diamond develop from a camper who attended our basketball camps when he was first entering high school to the great young man he is today. His versatility and knowledge of the game will allow him to play multiple perimeter positions at our level. Diamond's personality and humility will allow him to be a great teammate that future Badger teams will enjoy having him be a part of.
"He has continued to grow physically, which is obviously a great sign for his future, but he is also maturing into an excellent player that has a very high ceiling regarding his development down the road. We know he was coached and taught tremendously at a storied high school program like St. Joe's under Gene Pingatore. Now he has a "once-in-a-lifetime" opportunity to play for a team that is assisted by his dad at Bolingbrook. It also puts him closer to home and eliminates the daily long commute that he had previously been taking. My staff and I are very excited knowing that Diamond, and his family, will be a part of the future of Wisconsin Basketball."