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What Barry Alvarez Did For Wisconsin

ORLANDO, FL - JANUARY 2:  Badger fans show their support for head coach Barry Alvarez of the Wisconsin Badgers while defeating the Auburn Tigers during the Capital One Bowl on January 2, 2006 at the Florida Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Florida. Wisconsin defeated Auburn 24-10.  (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)
Doug Benc/Getty Images
Ryne EberleContributor IIJune 1, 2010

Three Big 10 Championships and three Rose Bowl victories.

The feats of Barry Alvarez may be well known to Badger fans, but his legacy has been revamped due to his latest accomplishment: an induction into the College Football Hall of Fame.

Although this milestone is just one more addition to the list of why Alvarez is enshrined into to the hearts of Badger fans,there are many more reasons why he is so renowned.

When he took over in 1990, it only took Alvarez four seasons to turn the program from an embarrassment into a championship caliber team.

The 1994 Rose Bowl victory was the turning point for Alvarez and the Badgers, who returned to Pasadena in 2000 and 2001 for two more victories.

Those three bowl victories made him the only Big 10 coach in history to do so, and they are the only Rose Bowl victories in school history.

Alvarez managed to do something else that wasn't common before his arrival: have six seasons with at least nine wins.

While Alvarez did that somewhat frequently, it was only accomplished four times in the nearly 100 seasons before he took over.

These accomplishments turned the Badger program into what is today: an annual competitor for the conference title and a program that managers to lure top prospects such as John Clay and Josh Oglesby away from other prestigious schools in the Big 10.

Another way he shaped the program today is that he brought current head coach Brett Bielema to the staff and selected him to carry the torch after stepping down.

Although what Alvarez did in the past puts him among the game's finest coaches, he is still responsible for the success and prestige of the program today.

 

 

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