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Wisconsin hires Ash to coach secondary

Wisconsin head coach Bret Bielema has tabbed Chris Ash to coach the Badgers' defensive backs, replacing Kerry Cooks, who left for Notre Dame last month.

Ash comes to Wisconsin from Iowa State, where he coached the secondary and served as recruiting coordinator. He has spent eight of the last 10 seasons at Iowa State, though he worked with Badgers defensive coordinator Dave Doeren and defensive line coach Charlie Partridge at Drake in 1996 to 1997. Ash actually succeeded Doeren as Drake's defensive coordinator after the 1997 season.

"I’m very excited to welcome Chris aboard," Bielema said in a statement. "He brings great knowledge and tremendous experience. I've known Chris for a long time and his familiarity not only with our staff but with our schemes will help in what I think will be a seamless transition for him and the rest of our coaches."

Ash's familiarity with both Doeren and Partridge, as well as his knowledge of Midwest recruiting, certainly helped his cause for the job. One potential red flag: Iowa State ranked 102nd nationally against the pass in 2009.