Thursday, December 20, 2012
Wisconsin could keep some assistants
By Brian Bennett
The Gary Andersen hire still hasn't been made officially official, and Wisconsin is expected to formally introduce him Friday after digging out of a snowstorm today.
But already there is much speculation about who will be on Andersen's Badgers staff. The Wisconsin State Journal reports that athletic director Barry Alvarez has targeted some current assistants for Andersen to retain, including two who have already accepted jobs with Bret Bielema at Arkansas.
Those are co-defensive coordinator and defensive line coach Charlie Partridge and strength coach Ben Herbert, both of whom took the same roles with the Razorbacks. But the paper reports Partridge has only a $50,000 buyout in his contract if he decides to stay and work for Andersen instead of going to Fayetteville.
Alvarez reportedly would also like to hold onto offensive line coach Bart Miller. He was a graduate assistant until after the second game of this season, when Bielema fired Mike Markuson and elevated Miller to a full-time role. The Badgers' offensive line play greatly improved, and Miller is seen as a rising star.
Andersen's offensive coordinator at Utah State, Matt Wells, has interviewed for the head coaching job for the Aggies and has a great chance to get the gig. If so, that would leave Andersen needing a playcaller. The Badgers' current offensive coordinator, Matt Canada, has accepted that same job at NC State under former Wisconsin assistant Dave Doeren. Could Canada be convinced to stay if Andersen wanted some continuity on the offensive side?
The assistant carousel is still spinning. Stay tuned.