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Report: Former Badgers HC on short list for Big Ten OC vacancy

The Badgers could be playing against their former head coach next season.

Syndication: USA TODAY Mark Hoffman / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Wisconsin Badgers could be playing against a familiar face next season as former head coach Paul Chryst is reportedly on the short list for the Iowa Hawkeyes offensive coordinator vacancy, according to Chad Leistikow of HawkCentral.

In a recent press conference, Ferentz shared a level of respect for Chryst, who was his former foe over the past few years.

“I’ve always had tremendous respect for Paul — it’s publicly stated — and he did an outstanding job in Wisconsin,” Ferentz said, via the Athletic’s Scott Dochterman. “Since we got here 25 years ago, that’s the team we’ve been chasing. At that time they were the champs, and we weren’t. We were obviously not. So that’s the program that we’ve really aspired to try to compete with. And the good news is over the last five years, we’ve got more wins than they do and I’m happy about that. Not that we can’t do better, but I’ve always had great respect for Paul. He’s a really good person.”

At the end of the day, however, Ferentz knows what he wants out of his offensive coordinator position, and there are several intriguing candidates to choose.

“Based on what I know as I stand here right now, I feel total confidence that we’ll have a really good person here,” Ferentz said, via Dochterman. “I think there’s some strong interest from people that would make a lot of sense that I think will fit what we need. So it’s going to work out just fine — unless the bottom falls out.”

Chryst, 57, has an 86-45 record as a head coach, which includes his stint at Pittsburgh, as well as his seven years at Wisconsin.

Chryst was recently fired by the Badgers in 2022 after a 2-3 start, which led to Wisconsin initially going with interim head coach Jim Leonhard before ultimately hiring Luke Fickell as their next program leader.