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Wisconsin football: Badgers restructure strength and conditioning program, add Bradie Ewing and Kyle Costigan

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UW announces a reshuffling of the strength and conditioning staff, with two former football standouts joining the team.

Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Wisconsin's athletic department announced the promotion of Erik Helland to director of strength and conditioning on Thursday, along with Bradie Ewing and Kyle Costigan beginning their first year with Wisconsin as assistant football strength and conditioning coach and graduate assistant, respectively.

Helland will continue his work with the men's basketball team, with Ross Kolodziej serving as associate director in addition to his head strength and conditioning coach position with the football program.

Ewing was a team captain in 2011 and a member of back-to-back Rose Bowl teams in 2010 and 2011. Costigan started 35 games in his Badgers career, including his last 26 straight at right guard.

Former director John Dettmann, who's been credited by many former Badgers for his role in their development at Wisconsin, will begin a new role as Director of Performance for UW.

Here's the official statement from the Wisconsin athletic department:

Badgers announce restructuring of strength and conditioning staff
Helland takes over as director of strength and conditioning

July 16, 2015

MADISON, Wis. -- The University of Wisconsin Athletic Department announced several modifications to its strength and conditioning staff on Thursday, including the promotion of Erik Helland to director of strength and conditioning.

Helland, who will continue his strength and conditioning work with men's basketball, will oversee the strength and conditioning programs and facilities for all UW athletic teams. The Edgerton native is about to begin his third season working with men's basketball, and the Badgers have advanced to the Final Four in each of his first two years at Wisconsin. Prior to his arrival at UW, Helland spent 25 years with the Chicago Bulls, including his final 12 years in the Windy City as the team's head strength coach.

Ross Kolodziej, the head strength and conditioning coach for football, will serve as an associate director in the department. Kolodziej, who helped UW win back-to-back Big Ten and Rose Bowl titles in 1999 and 2000 as a defensive tackle, spent the past two seasons at Pittsburgh, where he served as the head strength and conditioning coach for football during the 2014 campaign under current UW head coach Paul Chryst.

Shaun Snee, Jamil Walker and Bradie Ewing will serve as assistant strength and conditioning coaches for football.

Snee spent last year at UMass where he worked with football and was also responsible for the baseball strength and conditioning program. He was previously a strength and conditioning graduate assistant at Pitt for two years, working with Kolodziej and the Panthers' football team.

Walker starts his seventh season as an assistant football strength and conditioning coach. The former Badgers tailback was a part of the winningest senior class in UW history, going 40-11 over his four-year playing career.

Ewing begins his first year as an assistant football strength and conditioning coach after spending the past three years in the NFL. The former UW fullback helped Wisconsin win back-to-back Big Ten titles and was a team captain his senior year.

In addition, former Wisconsin offensive lineman Kyle Costigan, a first-team All-America selection in 2014, will be a graduate assistant for the football strength and conditioning staff.

Jim Snider will act as an associate director for the strength and conditioning program and as the director of its Kohl Center operations. He has spent the past nine years working with the men's and women's hockey programs and has developed numerous NHL players and Olympians. Snider will continue to work with both hockey teams.

Renee Zernicke will work primarily with the women's basketball squad at the Kohl Center and will also assist the strength and conditioning efforts of men's and women's golf, women's tennis and the spirit squad. The Bonduel native spent the past two seasons at UC Davis, where she worked with men's and women's basketball, women's volleyball, men's soccer, men's water polo and the men's and women's tennis teams.

Kevin Schultz will serve as the third associate director for the department and the director of Olympic sports strength and conditioning. Schultz will provide oversight of the McClain Center weight room facility, have assignments with the volleyball and women's and men's soccer programs, and facilitate the strength and conditioning internship program. Prior to Wisconsin, Schultz served as the director of sports performance at UW-La Crosse for four years.

Jeff Zuhlke and Billy Breider will serve as strength and conditioning coaches for Olympic sports. Zuhlke begins his fifth season at Wisconsin and will work with men's and women's track & field and cross country, softball and men's tennis. Breider is about to start his third year at UW and will work with swimming and diving, wrestling and women's crew.

John Dettmann, who previously served as the director of strength and conditioning, has been named the Director of Performance for the Badgers. In this new role, Dettmann will advance elite performance programming for UW Athletics, serve as a departmental resource for student-athletes in their fueling and recovery and assist with the selection and management of performance-related technologies.