Sept. 30, 2013
MADISON, Wis. – While the Wisconsin men’s soccer team may be surprising many across the country with their impressive start, the team was treated to its own surprise last Thursday afternoon.
The Badgers were told early in the week that they would be welcoming a special guest speaker to talk with the team before travelling to University Park, Pa. for its Big Ten opener against Penn State.
Completely unaware of their guest, the guys went about their business, tidying up the locker room before posing for their team picture.
Little did the guys know, arguably the most recognizable name and face affiliated with UW Athletics was making his way to the room.
Sure enough, in walked Wisconsin athletic director and football coaching legend Barry Alvarez.
Head coach John Trask had never asked Alvarez to speak to his team in the three-plus years he’s been head coach. But, recognizing he was at the helm of a squad that cracked the NSCAA/Continental Tire Top-25 for this first time in over a decade and was preparing to open its Big Ten slate, Trask knew the time was right.
Alvarez, who grew up only about three hours west of Penn State’s campus, in Langeloth, Pa., inspired the Badgers with a few words of encouragement.
“You’ve got everything you need to be successful,” Alvarez explained. “Now you have to go out there and prove it.”
The Badgers will carry Alvarez’s words of wisdom into their match against Marquette on Wednesday, as the team looks to extend its unbeaten streak at home against the Golden Eagles, which dates back to 1999.