Every Thursday, we send out the great OnMilwaukee Weekend Preview filled with awesome things to do. Some are sports-related; many are not. So every Monday, we recap what happened in the world of Wisconsin sports while you were doing all those other awesome things.
Packers draft three players in first three rounds: After selecting UCLA defensive tackle Kenny Clark with its first-round pick on Thursday – nabbing a player they hope can immediately plug a hole on the line after B.J. Raji’s abrupt retirement – Green Bay had two more choices on Friday.
In the second round, Ted Thompson traded up to take athletic offensive lineman Jason Spriggs from Indiana with the 48th overall pick. Spriggs is physically gifted, versatile and should be insurance against injury or departure of tackles Bryan Bulaga and David Bahktiari. The Packers sent their second-round pick (No. 57), fourth-round pick (No. 125) and a seventh-rounder (No. 248) to the Colts to move up and snag Spriggs.
In the third round, Green Bay got Utah State outside linebacker Kyler Fackrell at No. 88 overall. Rather than fill an apparent need at inside linebacker – or perhaps feeling there wasn’t a need – Thompson chose a 24-year-old who tore his ACL less than two years old and isn’t considered an elite pass rusher. Fackrell’s selection seemed to spell the end of Mike Neal’s tenure with the Packers.
Brewers lose to Marlins, 6-3: Milwaukee was no-hit for nearly eight innings by Miami starter Adam Conley, scored three runs in the ninth after he was pulled but still fell at Miller Park on Friday night. Conley went 7 2/3 innings without allowing a hit and striking out seven Brewers, while teammate Justin Bour had two home runs and a double for five crucial RBI. Zach Davies took the loss in a laborious outing (5.0 innings, six hits, four earned runs, three walks and five strikeouts), as Milwaukee managed just four hits.
Packers draft four more players: On Saturday, in the NFL Draft’s final four rounds, Green Bay added another two players on both sides of the ball. Thompson filled the need at inside linebacker, taking Stanford’s Blake Martinez with the 130th overall pick. The Pac-12’s leading tackler last season, with 141, Martinez can play on passing downs and figures to challenge Jake Ryan and Sam Barrington for a starting spot.
With his second of two compensatory picks in the fourth round, at No. 137, the Packers drafted Northwestern defensive end Dean Lowry, a big guy (6-foot-5, 296 pounds) who can run fast (4.87-second 40-yard dash time). Lowry has short arms but he works hard and could play a lot early on, given defensive end Mike Pennell is suspended for the first four games.
In the fifth round, Thompson chose California wide receiver Trevor Davis at No. 163. Davis adds speed (4.42 in the 40) to what was a slow Packers pass-catching corps last year and he can return kickoffs. (If you want to read about what another former Cal star was like as an 18-year-old, check out this Aaron Rodgers story.)
In the sixth round, with the 200th overall pick, Green Bay took Stanford offensive lineman Kyle Murphy with their final selection. He became the second Cardinal player drafted by Thompson this year and the third in two drafts.
A couple Badgers became NFL players, too, and will have opportunities to play with other former Wisconsin stars. Linebacker Joe Schobert, a Waukesha native, went in the fourth round (No. 99 overall) to the Browns and fullback Derek Watt in the sixth round (No. 198) to the Chargers. In Cleveland, Schobert will have the chance to play with left tackle Joe Thomas, while Watt could be in the backfield with Melvin Gordon in San Diego.
Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame induction: On Saturday evening at the UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena, the revived Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame held its first induction ceremony in nine years. Former Packers receiver Donald Driver and retired Badgers basketball coach Bo Ryan earned entry and were "immortalized in bronze" in front of sports fans, media, former players and event organizers. See a full photo gallery of the event here.
Brewers lose to Marlins, 7-5: In another ugly outing for a Brewers starter, Chase Anderson allowed six runs on nine hits and four walks over 4 1/3 innings. Miami blasted four homers – Milwaukee’s Hernan Perez also hit his first of the season – and the Brewers lost their fourth game in a row.
Brewers beat Marlins, 14-5: The bats woke up! Slugging first baseman Chris Carter snapped out of his slump with three hits and two home runs, right fielder Domingo Santana added a homer and left fielder Ryan Braun had three hits and two RBI, as the Brewers won the series finale at Miller Park. Pitcher Wily Peralta again struggled, though, allowing five runs on 13 hits in 5 2/3 innings, but the bullpen kept the Marlins quiet. Milwaukee begins a three-game interleague series at home on Monday against the Angels.
Born in Milwaukee but a product of Shorewood High School (go ‘Hounds!) and Northwestern University (go ‘Cats!), Jimmy never knew the schoolboy bliss of cheering for a winning football, basketball or baseball team. So he ditched being a fan in order to cover sports professionally - occasionally objectively, always passionately. He's lived in Chicago, New York and Dallas, but now resides again in his beloved Brew City and is an ardent attacker of the notorious Milwaukee Inferiority Complex.
After interning at print publications like Birds and Blooms (official motto: "America's #1 backyard birding and gardening magazine!"), Sports Illustrated (unofficial motto: "Subscribe and save up to 90% off the cover price!") and The Dallas Morning News (a newspaper!), Jimmy worked for web outlets like CBSSports.com, where he was a Packers beat reporter, and FOX Sports Wisconsin, where he managed digital content. He's a proponent and frequent user of em dashes, parenthetical asides, descriptive appositives and, really, anything that makes his sentences longer and more needlessly complex.
Jimmy appreciates references to late '90s Brewers and Bucks players and is the curator of the unofficial John Jaha Hall of Fame. He also enjoys running, biking and soccer, but isn't too annoying about them. He writes about sports - both mainstream and unconventional - and non-sports, including history, music, food, art and even golf (just kidding!), and welcomes reader suggestions for off-the-beaten-path story ideas.