Asmussen: Andersen, Hazell solid hires

Asmussen: Andersen, Hazell solid hires

Take two

Now that Wisconsin has picked Utah State’s Gary Andersen as its next football coach, the Big Ten has all of its spots filled. Here is Bob Asmussen’s reaction to the two new hires:

Darrell Hazell and Gary Andersen were destined to move on from Kent State and Utah State. How do we know this? Because they rebuilt programs that looked almost beyond repair. Kent State hadn’t been to a bowl since the Nixon administration and Utah State won more games this season (11) than in the three years before Andersen arrived (nine). On the surface, you would think Hazell has the tougher job at Purdue. The Boilermakers had to scramble to get into a bowl and don’t have the recent success of Wisconsin. But at Kent State, Hazell showed he can turn a program in a short time, which had to figure into Purdue’s decision to hire him. The bigger trick might be keeping him at Purdue after he gets to a New Year’s Day game in a couple of seasons. At Wisconsin, Barry Alvarez is tinkering with success. Andersen used a spread offense at Utah State. But he played the Badgers this season and knows what will work best in Madison. Look for him to adapt to the Wisconsin Way and become a perfect follow to Bret Bielema.

Categories (3):Illini Sports, Football, Sports

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illini82 wrote on December 20, 2012 at 10:12 am

I wonder who our new coach will be in a year or two?  Skoalman didn't have near the pedigree Hazell and Andersen have. Purdue looks like they got an upgrade. We settled for a big downgrade. That said I don't think Wisconsin got their top choice either but you sure wouldn't know it as Alvarez kept the selection process close to his vest unlike our AD who floated enough info about Sumlin to make it look like it was a done deal. Then he was in scramble mode and we've been scrambling ever since.

But then again we are Illinois. At other schools football matters. At Illinois...not so much.