Once more into the breach - Jeff Gross
Badgers coaching legend to be on the sidelines and will replace Bret Bielema on Jan 1st
Barry Alvarez, the current Wisconsin athletic director and the man who made Badger football nationally relevant, will return for a one game cameo to the place that helped make him famous: The Rose Bowl.
Alvarez took over Wisconsin football in 1990, and in his 16 year coaching career in Madison he posted a record of 118-73-4. He won a share of the Big Ten title in 1993, 1998, and 1999, went 8-3 in bowl games, and was 3-0 in Pasadena, to include back to back Rose Bowl wins after the '98 and '99 seasons.
It's hard to overstate how important Alvarez was to restoring Wisconsin football. Prior to him arriving in Madison, Wisconsin hadn't won the Big Ten since 1962, which was their last appearance in Pasadena, and hadn't even been to a bowl game of any kind since 1984.
The two previous coaches before Alvarez had gone a combined 9-26 and won a total of 5 conference games in 4 years. Alvarez had a rough couple of years, but by 1993 had Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl, and thus began the longest run of success in Badgers history.
Although the University of Wisconsin has not officially said Alvarez will coach the Rose Bowl, former coach Bret Bielema let the cat slip out of the bag at his press conference introducing him as the Arkansas coach today.
Wisconsin has set up a press conference for tomorrow morning to make the Alvarez announcement official, but there has been no word on a permanent head coach.