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Wisconsin men’s hockey: Tony Granato tabs Andy Brandt as newest assistant coach

The Wisconsin native and alum is returning to Madison behind the bench.

NCAA Mens Hockey - Frozen Four - National Championship - Boston College vs Wisconsin - April 8, 2006 Photo by G. N. Lowrance/Getty Images

The Wisconsin Badgers men’s hockey program announced on Monday that they have hired a new assistant coach. Former Badger Andy Brandt is coming home to be the new man behind the bench with Tony Granato. Brandt was a member of the Wisconsin hockey team from 2003 to 2007, which included the 2006 national championship run.

“I am excited to add Andy Brandt to our coaching staff,” Granato said. “Badger fans will remember him as a hard-working forward that left it all on the ice, as well for his contributions to our 2006 national championship team. Andy has lots to add to our staff and I can’t wait for our players to see the passion, energy and hockey expertise that he will add to our program.”

After his four years with the Badgers, he spent seven years playing for various AHL and ECHL teams, mostly the Gwinnett Gladiators, before retiring.

NCAA Men’s Frozen Four Semifinals: Maine v Wisconsin Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

He then served two and a half seasons as a Gladiators assistant coach before being elevated to head coach half way through the 2014-2015 season. In 2017, the native of Wausau moved back to Wisconsin and became an assistant coach at St. Norbert College in Green Bay.

“It’s a thrill to be back in Madison and help out what I think is the nation’s greatest college hockey program,” Brandt said. “It was special playing and studying at Wisconsin and I can’t wait to get back into it.”

It’s no secret that head coach Tony Granato is under pressure these days. Granato has been head coach for six seasons and only has two winning seasons in Madison. Fans are frustrated and despite seeing all kinds of talent coming through the program, there has been very little on-ice success. Hopefully Brandt can be the spark to the program that they need.