Jeff Sauer Tribute
Several members of the Wisconsin men's hockey team attended coach Jeff Sauer's press conference Wednesday concerning his retirement. Senior players for the Badgers shared their thoughts regarding the surprise announcement. The following is a transcript of interviews with the players:
Andy Wheeler, Senior Captain
"The whole situation is kind of unfortunate because he is a real team-oriented type of guy. By having this story leaked early accidentally, it makes him look like an individual and that's the last thing he wanted. That's really unfortunate, but he's done so many things for this program and just hockey in general. He's really left his stamp and it's a bar for other people to come up and live up too."
Kent Davyduke, Senior Assistant Captain
"I wish he could have done it on his own terms. That's disappointing because he was here so long. He had so much respect and he treated people with a lot of respect. That upsets me that it wasn't given back. Just seeing him up there talking and how much charisma he has just shows what he was capable of doing here. He has that ability to be that kind of person."
Matt Doman, Senior Assistant Captain
"I think it's definitely something he's been thinking about for a few years and I think people probably expected it. But, like everyone said, the bar has been raised to a new level. He's the winningest coach in WCHA history. He's been Wisconsin hockey for 20 years. He'll be remembered here for a long time. It's bigger and better for him."
Rob Vega, Senior Defenseman
"I think it is as good a time as any personally for him, as well as for the program. He's done more for the program than I think anybody could ever possibly do in the future for the program. I myself grew up in Madison. Like he was talking about earlier, I was one of those guys that was this big when he was winning championships. It's important to all of us in different ways. I think for him it's also a good opportunity to do a lot of things behind the scenes with Wisconsin Hockey and with administrative things that he can do now. For him, I think it as much an opportunity as it is a changing of the guards on the ice."