The Badgers will honor Alvarez, their newest inductee into the College Football Hall of Fame, Sept. 18 when they host Arizona State.
DALLAS, Sept. 16, 2010 – The University of Wisconsin and The National Football Foundation (NFF) & College Hall of Fame will jointly honor Coach Barry Alvarez this Saturday, Sept. 18, during an NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salute, presented by Fidelity Investments®, the nation’s No. 1 provider of workplace retirement savings plans. The Badgers will be hosting Arizona State, and the game is scheduled to be aired at 3:30 p.m. on ABC.
“We’re incredibly proud of Barry’s selection to the College Football Hall of Fame and this event allows our fans an opportunity to celebrate his remarkable career,” says University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor Biddy Martin. “Barry transformed the Badger program, developed student-athletes’ potential on and off the field and helped build a new sense of Wisconsin pride.”
In May, the NFF announced that Alvarez, who tallied a 118-73-4 record as the Badgers head coach from 1990-2005, will be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame as a member of the 2010 class. Throughout the season, each Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I-A) College Football Hall of Fame inductee returns to his school for the special on-field event, where a commemorative plaque is presented to the university for permanent display. Beginning with the NFF’s inaugural Hall of Fame class in 1951, the NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salute, presented by the Fidelity Investments in 2010, has served as the first of numerous highlights in the hall of fame experience, giving each inductee one more chance to take the field.
As part of its commitment to serving the higher education community, a Fidelity representative will participate in Saturday’s on-field presentation while joining the NFF in making a donation to the Badgers’ scholarship fund. Additional funds are also being provided to expand the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Program, which includes the presentation of $18,000 post-graduate scholarships to 15 of the nation’s top scholar-athletes from all levels of collegiate play. Past Wisconsin recipients of the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Awards are David Fronek (1965), Thomas Strauss (1979), James Leonhard (2004) and Joe Thomas (2006).
“We are extremely excited to participate in Saturday’s on-campus salute to honor Coach Barry Alvarez and join Fidelity Investments in making a contribution to support the Wisconsin scholarship fund,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “Coach Alvarez was the ultimate competitor, recruiter and tactician. He clearly built a record that deserves to be forever preserved in the College Football Hall of Fame.”
The only coach in Big Ten history to win back-to-back Rose Bowls, Barry Alvarez boasts the highest all-time bowl winning percentage (.727) for coaches with at least 11 bowl appearances. The coach winningest coach in Wisconsin history, Alvarez captured three Big Ten Championships, and he joins College Football Hall of Fame coach Woody Hayes as the only two Big Ten coaches to win three Rose Bowls. He coached 12 First Team All-America players, including three-time First Team selection and 1999 Heisman Trophy winner Ron Dayne, 62 First Team All-Big Ten picks, and two NFF National Scholar-Athletes (Jim Leonhard and Joe Thomas).
“It is very humbling. When this is your life’s work, and it culminates like this, the first thing you think about is all the people that had something to do with it,” said Alvarez at the time of the May 27 announcement. “Any time that you win an honor such as this, it’s not one person. It’s about the accumulated work of a number of people. From a staff, a very loyal staff that came to the University of Wisconsin and believed in the plan that I had and worked very hard to get it done, to a group of players that bought in and changed the culture, not only in our football program, but changed the culture of our athletic department.”
In 1993, Alvarez was named Bobby Dodd National Coach of the Year, AFCA National Coach of the Year and College & Pro Football Newsweekly National Coach of the Year. The 1999 Victor Award (National Coach of the Year) winner, Alvarez was a finalist for ESPN National College Coach of the Decade.
Named Wisconsin’s athletics director in 2004, Alvarez continued to coach for two years before retiring and focusing solely on his administrative position. Alvarez serves on the NCAA Football Issues Committee, the Board of Directors of the MACC Fund and was appointed as one of the chairs of the NCAA’s Football Academic Enhancement Group. Alvarez and his wife Cindy have three children.
Alvarez will be the 10th Wisconsin player or coach inducted into the Hall of Fame, and the Badgers’ second coach to receive the honor. Wisconsin players in the hall of fame (with year of induction) include Alan Ameche (1975), Marty Below (who also played at Oshkosh, 1988), Bob Butler (1972), Pat Harder (1993), Elroy Hirsch (who also played at Michigan, 1974), Pat O’Dea (1962), Pat Richter (1996), and Dave Schreiner (1955). The only other coach in the hall of fame with a stop at Wisconsin is George Little (1955) who coached the Badgers for two seasons from 1925-26. For a complete list of players and coaches in the hall, please visit www.collegefootball.org.
The 2010 Hall of Fame Class will be officially inducted at the NFF’s Annual Awards Dinner, held at New York City’s historic Waldorf=Astoria Hotel on Tuesday, December 7. For ticket information to the Dec. 7 induction, please contact Will Rudd at the National Football Foundation: 972-556-1000 or by email at [email protected].
The National Hall of Fame Salute at the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl follows on January 1, giving the class recognition on a national stage, and events culminate with the College Football Hall of Fame’s Enshrinement Festival in the summer of 2011.
This year’s hall of fame class includes Dennis Byrd (North Carolina State); Ronnie Caveness (Arkansas); Ray Childress (Texas A&M); Randy Cross (UCLA); Sam Cunningham (Southern California); Mark Herrmann (Purdue); Clarkston Hines (Duke); Desmond Howard (Michigan); Chet Moeller (Navy); Jerry Stovall (LSU); Pat Tillman (Arizona State); Alfred Williams (Colorado); and coaches Barry Alvarez (Wisconsin) and Gene Stallings (Texas A&M, Alabama).