TAMPA, Fla. - Wisconsin Director of Athletics Barry Alvarez announced Thursday that he will assume head coaching duties for the Wisconsin football team as it prepares for its Outback Bowl matchup with Auburn on Jan. 1 in Tampa.
"A number of the seniors met with me on Wednesday after our team meeting and asked if I would consider coaching the team," Alvarez said. "I told them I would have to sleep on it. After thinking it over and meeting with some of the seniors again this morning I have decided to coach. I feel this gives our assistants an opportunity to concentrate on getting the team ready for a very good opponent in Auburn. My goal is to make sure our players, especially the seniors playing their last game, have a memorable experience and we do everything we can to prepare to win the game."
No. 17 Wisconsin and 19th-ranked Auburn will square off in the Outback Bowl at Raymond James Stadium on Jan. 1 at 11 a.m. CT on ESPN2. The last time the two teams met was in the 2006 Capital One Bowl, Alvarez's final game on the sidelines after announcing his retirement from coaching. The Badgers, who were 10-point underdogs in that game, defeated Auburn 24-10.
This is the second time Alvarez has returned to coach the Badgers. He also coached UW in the 2013 Rose Bowl when the Badgers fell to Stanford, 20-14.