This time, it is for real
Moments after Wisconsin easily dispatched Texas A&M-Corpus Christi 64-49, longtime Wisconsin head coach Bo Ryan has announced his retirement.
Here are some comments as mentioned during his final press conference inside the Kohl Center that was carried live on the Big Ten Network:
“After months of conversation with (Wisconsin athletic director) Barry Alvarez and his administrative staff, as well as my wife, Kelly, I have decided that now is the right time to step down from the head coaching position here at Wisconsin. This was a decision months in the making. I brought this up to Barry back in April. He advised me to take some time to think it over and I appreciated that. But in recent weeks, I have come to the conclusion that now is the right time for me to retire and for Greg Gard to have the opportunity to coach the team for the remainder of the season. I discussed this with Barry and I appreciate him giving me the space to make this decision.”
Longtime assistant coach Greg Gard, age 45 was immediately tapped as the new interim coach. He will have the rest of the season (at minimum, close to three months) to see if he can convince the Athletic Department of being their next full-time head coach.
747 career wins and Wisconsin’s all-time leader with 364 victories in Madison over 14 plus seasons at Wisconsin, he will be remembered in being an integral part of the Badgers reaching the last two Final Fours, 14 NCAA tournament appearances and seven Big Ten titles. During Ryan’s tenure the Badgers never finished worse than fourth place in the Big Ten. That streak will sadly come to an end when March rolls around.
But with no scholarship seniors, six of the current players on the Badgers roster are freshmen. We will see how quickly they gel prior to their December 29 conference opener with Purdue.
Monmouth upsets Georgetown
Monmouth used great rebounding and 10 of 20 shooting from behind the arc to upend the Hoyas at the Verizon Center by a 83-68 count. The lead was at double digits during the entire second half.
Even with Notre Dame and Seton Hall getting nice wins at home on Sunday and Gonzaga starting to get back on track with an 86-50 win over St. Martin’s, everyone is trying to chase Michigan State for that coveted overall number 1 seed.
Also, look out for Northwestern who moved to 9-1 on the season after a nice 78-48 drubbing of Mississippi Valley State, who has yet to win a game in 12 tries this season.