Bo Ryan was inducted into the College Basketball Hall of Fame on Sunday, a commemoration of his accomplishments which include 742 wins, four Division III titles at UW-Platteville, seven total Big Ten regular season or tournament championships, and two final four berths (if not for Grayson Allen going HAM and officials calling a tight game, there’d be a national title there too).
As a Wisconsin alum, I feel that now is about the time for Athletic Director Barry Alvarez and the Wisconsin athletic department to follow suit and bring Bo out to be applauded on the Kohl Center court before or at halftime of a Badgers game. However, a UW spokesperson tells The Big Lead that he is “not aware of any plans for this season” for that to happen.
In a video message, Barry Alvarez offered congratulations to the basketball coach on his induction “on behalf of the department and Badger fans everywhere.” This public acknowledgement represents a mending of the fences, of sorts, since the two Madison titans did not have the smoothest parting of ways in December 2015. Ryan resigned abruptly in the middle of the season, hamstringing Alvarez into giving Ryan’s chosen successor Greg Gard an extended tryout, which he aced and earned himself a contract extension.
Later it was revealed by Deadspin that the athletic department had, prior to the coach’s resignation, investigated an extramarital affair but found no misuse of university funds. The school denied that this investigation led to the coach’s resignation.
Nevertheless, if Alvarez is willing to honor Bo Ryan in a video (Greg Gard and former Badger player Josh Gasser also gave their regards), and the athletic department’s web site and social media feeds see fit to honor him, Wisconsin basketball fans should also have the opportunity to show the coach how much they appreciate what he meant to the program. Two years is enough time that the wounds should be healed enough to recognize a tenure that in the aggregate was filled with happy memories.