(WAOW) - Several of central Wisconsin's finest athletes made their college choices official Wednesday with the first day of the national signing period.
Merrill's Sam Arneson had perhaps the biggest day, finally inking his name to play football for the Badgers next season after more than a year of waiting.
"My dad played football there and I grew up the biggest Badger fan and going down to Madison all the time, just the town, the stadium, the team, it's where I've always pictured myself and it's a dream come true for sure," Arneson said. "The offensive coordinator, Paul Chryst, he loves to use the tight ends and that's definitely exciting and appealing and makes it even better to be going to Wisconsin."
Many other athletes also put pen to paper Wednesday to put an end to something they've been waiting for for a long time.
"I'm just glad it's over and I'm committed to the school I want to go to," Stevens Point senior and Southern Illinois commit Adam Brandt said.
Athletes made their college choices official for national signing day Wednesday. Stevens Point had five athletes put pen to paper, including football players Alex Wachowiak, Bryce Dominick, Joe Horvath and Adam Brandt. The Panthers Abby Crotteau signed her letter to play soccer at Cleveland State.
"It's a dream come true," Wachowiak said. "I've been dreaming for it ever since I was in third grade, playing pee-wee football. It's awesome."
"I've seen a lot of people do it for the last three years, I've seen a lot of my good friends be up there signing and I never thought it would actually be me being able to sign and being able to say that I'm going to play division one soccer in college."
Wausau West and Wisconsin Rapids each saw three commitments today. The Warriors Travis Schertz, Ty Fischer and Matt Botch and the Raiders Frank Vruwink and Tim Quick will all play football at the next level, while Rapids' goalie Liz Schulze will head to Western Illinois to play soccer.
"I made my decision back in December, around my birthday and it just feels like a monkey off your back because you work all your high school career to be able to go play at the next level," Schertz said.
"I'm definitely excited to make it official going up to Duluth," Fischer said. "I verbally committed about a month ago and I was just waiting for the final day of signing the papers, faxing it in and making it official to be a Bulldog."
"It's not really totally sunk in yet, but it's pretty nice knowing where I'm going to go," Vruwink said. "Relief, everything, it's just awesome."
Other notable athletes who made their college selections official Wednesday include Pacelli quarterback Andy Rice, who will head to Drake, and Edgar lineman Jeff Raymond.