While Barry Alvarez is already searching for Bret Bielema’s replacement as head football coach in Madison, and Wisconsin’s athletic
director may pick himself to coach the team in the New Years Day Rose Bowl game against Stanford in less than a month.
According to story in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, reporter Jeff Potrykus says the tip comes from a source close to the UW program.
Bielema took the head coaching job at Arkansas on Tuesday, met with his Badger players early Tuesday evening, then boarded a plan for Arkansas.
According to some of his former players in Madison, Bielema saw the opportunity to go to Arkansas as a better chance to win a National Championship than he had in Madison.
In an Arkansas release on Tuesday night, Bielema said, “I am very humbled and honored to become the head coach of the Arkansas Razorbacks. During my conversation with Jeff (Long) he described the characteristics for the perfect fit to lead this program. It was evident we share the same mission, principles and goals.”
Bielema will get a big payday from the move. He’s expected to sign a contract that will pay him more than $4-million a year.
Following Bielema’s meeting with Wisconsin players on Tuesday night, the players said all the right things, but as expected, their disappointment was clearly evident. And how could it not. The man who has promised them everything is now walking away. That’s the way it is in big time college and professional sports. It’s uncertain whether or not Arkansas will give Bielema a better chance to win a National Championship than Wisconsin. But he now has 1.5-million more reasons to see it through.
Now the Badgers, whether it’s with Barry Alvarez, or a coach already on staff, have to put this behind them, and focus on getting ready to win the Rose Bowl and avoid a 3rd straight defeat in Pasadena.