The Wisconsin Badgers had a bittersweet ending to their 2022 season, as they defeated the Oklahoma State Cowboys 24-17 to win the Guaranteed Rate Bowl, sending off their previous coaches with a final victory as the new era begins at Camp Randall Stadium.
Defensive coordinator Jim Leonhard announced earlier this month that he would not return to Wisconsin after being bypassed for new head coach Luke Fickell. After the bowl game, Leonhard acknowledged that he has heard from several opportunities, but hadn’t come to a decision on his next destination yet.
However, there are several defensive coaches that have found their next location: Stanford.
Last week, Stanford announced that they had hired Wisconsin outside linebackers coach Bobby April as their new defensive coordinator under head coach Troy Taylor.
April leaves after six years at Wisconsin, having developed a variety of pass-rushing prospects that have gone on to the NFL, including 2022 sack leader Nick Herbig, who declared for the draft earlier this month.
But, on his new defensive staff, April plans to bring on two defensive coaches from Wisconsin: defensive line coach Ross Kolodziej and inside linebackers coach Mark D’Onofrio.
The news comes as no surprise, as new head coach Luke Fickell has a variety of assistants that he plans to bring along, such as Mike Tressell and Colin Hitschler, who have already begun efforts towards recruiting for the Badgers, while letting the current coaching staff finish out the season.
While it’s unfortunate that the Wisconsin coaches will be moving on, they got themselves a last win on Tuesday for a proper send-off.