Alvarez's historic career profiled in latest installment of 'Big Ten Icons'


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Nov. 8, 2011

Big Ten Icons: Alvarez

MADISON, Wis. -- Enshrinement in the College Football Hall of Fame solidified Barry Alvarez's place among the game's greatest coaches.

Now the former Badgers mentor is being recognized as one of the best to ever coach in the Big Ten Conference -- in any sport -- as the popular BTN series Big Ten Icons turns its attention to a profile of Alvarez that debuts at 10 p.m. Tuesday.

The episode is the sixth of 12 installments of the series, which is hosted by Hall of Fame sports broadcaster Keith Jackson. The series began last year with a look at the Big Ten's top 50 athletes and is back for a second run to profile the league's legendary coaches.

The show includes one-on-one interviews with fellow coaches like Lou Holtz and Lloyd Carr, former Badgers players like Chris McIntosh and Joe Thomas and those who covered Alvarez's 16 years on the UW sideline, including play-by-play man Matt Lepay.

"Any time you played Wisconsin, you had better be ready for a fist fight, I mean, you're going to get punched in the mouth," said Carr, who battled Alvarez's teams as head coach at Michigan. "And if you backed up, you were not going to win that game."

"Barry put UW on the map," said former UW lineman Joe Panos, who captained one of Alvarez's three Rose Bowl-winning teams. "Like it or not, believe it or not, he did it. And the proof is in the pudding."

Alvarez served as the head football coach at Wisconsin from 1990 to 2005, compiling a record of 118-73-4. He has the longest head coaching tenure and most wins in Wisconsin football history.

He is the only Big Ten coach to win consecutive Rose Bowls, and one of only six coaches, of any conference, to win at least three Rose Bowls (1994, 1999 and 2000). Alvarez was inducted to the College Football Hall of Fame in 2010 and is in his eighth year as Director of Athletics at UW.

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