Former Wisconsin Badgers coach Bo Ryan named finalist for Naismith Hall of Fame


Former Wisconsin Badgers coach Bo Ryan has been named a finalist for the 2017 Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

For the third straight year, former Wisconsin Badgers men’s basketball coach Bo Ryan has been named a finalist for the 2017 Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

Ryan joins 13 other finalists for this prestigious honor and will await the decision on who will be inducted in April. The announcement will be made at the Final Four in Phoenix prior to the National Championship game and enshrinement ceremonies in Springfield, Massachusetts are scheduled for Sept. 7-9.

“We are grateful to the 14 finalists in the Class of 2017 for the impact they have had on the game we cherish,” Basketball Hall of Fame Chairman Jerry Colangelo said. “To be named a finalist for the Basketball Hall of Fame is an incredible accomplishment.”

Ryan joins other returning finalists from past years as former NBA guard Tim Hardaway, high school coach Robert Hughes, and women’s basketball coach Muffet McGraw are also on the list.

Finalists need to receive 18 of 24 final votes from the induction committee to be admitted into the Hall of Fame.

Ryan has 32 years of college coaching experience before retiring mid-season last year. He finished his career 26th on the NCAA’s all-time wins list with a record of 747-233 (.762), including a 364-130 (.737) mark during his tenure at Wisconsin. Holder of the best winning percentage in Big Ten history, Ryan led the Badgers to seven Big Ten titles, back-to-back Final Fours in 2014 and 2015 and an appearance in the national championship game. Wisconsin never finished lower than fourth place under Ryan’s guidance and made the NCAA Tournament in every single one of Ryan’s years with the Badgers.

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Since retiring, Ryan has stayed under-the-radar. With the looming question of if he will ever return to coaching, Ryan has expressed that notion as a low-priority topic, saying he is currently enjoying his time in retirement.

“I want to give it a full year, if not a little bit more, to decide what I want to do later,” Ryan said in an interview with Big Ten Network.

Regardless of how Ryan feels about eventually coaching again, let’s hope the committee makes the right decision this year and inducts Ryan into the Hall of Fame.