Wisconsin now has their man. On Friday evening, the university announced their approval of Greg Gard to become the new head coach of the Badgers.
Two weeks ago, Athletic Director Barry Alvarez began the national search by officially posting the job. Early Monday morning, the Board of Regents set up a teleconference to discuss the contract of the Badgers new head coach. Shortly after their 5 p.m. meeting, the search was declared over with Gard locked in as the 16th head coach of the Wisconsin Badgers. His contract is reportedly set for 5 years.
Gard met with his players to tell them the news first-hand before traveling to the Great Dane in Hilldale Mall for his weekly radio talk show.
Gard, 45, who has been an assistant at Wisconsin since 2001, took over as the Badgers' interim head coach following the mid-season retirement of Bo Ryan on Dec.15. Within a week of Ryan's departure, Gard set up the Swing offense and defeated Green Bay 84-79 in his head coaching debut.
The transition under Gard has had it's road bumps. The Badgers started Big Ten play 1-4 and 9-9 overall.
Then everything started to click for Gard and his young Badger squad. They finished the regular season by winning 11 of their final 13 games to move to 20-11 on the season and 12-6 in conference play.
The Badgers open the Big Ten Tournament with the winner of Rutgers-Nebraska, Thursday at 8 p.m. in Indianapolis.