Barry Alvarez a former football coach and current athletic director at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Serving 16 seasons as the head football coach at Wisconsin, he has the longest head coaching tenure and the most wins in Wisconsin Badgers football history.
Wisconsin has enjoyed remarkable success during Alvarez’s tenure at the head of the athletic department, winning a combined 12 team national titles and 29 conference regular-season or tournament crowns since he took over.
Alvarez was appointed in the spring of 2008 as one of the chairs of the NCAA’s Football Academic Enhancement Group, which was formed to review and recommend improvements for the APR rating. He also serves on the NCAA Football Issues Committee. In addition, Alvarez was named “Person of the Year” by the Big Ten Club of Southern California in 2008. Alvarez was voted into the state of Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame and the Rose Bowl Hall of Fame in 2009 and was inducted into the UW Athletics Hall of Fame in 2010.
Elected to the College Football Hall of Fame, Alvarez guided Wisconsin’s football fortunes for 16 seasons (1990-2005). He has been at the forefront of the revival of the Badger athletic program during his entire tenure in Madison. He piloted Wisconsin to three Big Ten and Rose Bowl titles (including back-to-back in 1998-99) en route to becoming the winningest football coach in school history (118-73-4 record).
Alvarez was just the 10th coach in Big Ten history to win 100 games at one conference institution. His 8-3 record in bowl games with the Badgers is the best in college football history (among coaches with at least 11 bowl appearances). The 1993 national coach of the year, he was a two-time (1993 and 1998) Big Ten coach of the year and a finalist for ESPN’s coach of the decade (1990s) honor. He received the Victor Award’s 1999 National Coach of the Year accolade and was the 2004 AFCA Region 3 Coach of the Year. He was also named Under Armour's 2017-18 Athletic Director of the Year.
Alvarez is a 1969 graduate of the University of Nebraska, where he played linebacker and went on to earn his master’s degree. He received a Distinguished Alumnus Award from his alma mater in 2003. Alvarez and his wife, Cindy, were co-campaign chairs in the effort to bring a Gilda’s Club (a free support center for families dealing with cancer) to Madison. That facility opened in the fall of 2008. In addition, Alvarez serves on the Board of Directors of the MACC Fund (Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer).
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