FOX 47 - Sports
Madison- How close was the Wisconsin football program to losing head coach Gary Andersen? Maybe not that close, but there was a phone call. The Cleveland Browns contacted Andersen during their search for a head coach- potentially their sixth in 10 years, but Andersen declined to go further with the negotiations.
The Browns eventually hired former Bills assistant Mike Pettine.
Andersen and UW athletic director Barry Alvarez both released statements after the news was made public.
Andersen: "Officials from the Cleveland Browns contacted me to talk about their head coaching vacancy. After our initial conversation, I decided not to pursue the position. I am committed to the University of Wisconsin and the student-athletes in our program. I love the city of Madison and am grateful for all the support from Badgers fans around the state and around the country. I look forward to the start of spring football in a couple weeks and turning the focus to preparing for 2014."
Alvarez: "I'm appreciative that Gary handled all of this the right way. He alerted me immediately that he had been contacted by the Browns and affirmed his committment to the University of Wisconsin. When you have talented coaches on your roster, there will always be people who want to talk to them. I think that Gary is one of the top coaches in the country and am glad that he is leading our team."
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