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Greg Gard named Big Ten Coach of the Year


MADISON, Wis. — Greg Gard really is the ‘Silent Assassin.’

The Badgers’ fifth-year head coach won his first conference title Saturday afternoon, and now is the 2019-20 Big Ten Coach of the Year.

Gard’s Badgers finished 21-10 this regular season, and 14-6 in conference play. Wisconsin is the No. 1 seed in this weekend’s Big Ten Tournament in Indianapolis. The Badgers will play either Michigan or Rutgers at 11 a.m. Friday.

The Cobb, Wisconsin, native, took over the program when Bo Ryan abruptly retired during the 2015-16 season. Gard has led the Badgers to three NCAA Tournaments and two Sweet 16s, but has even higher hopes for this season.

The honor for Gard comes as the team has faced incredible tragedy and adversity this year. Gard’s assistant coach, Howard Moore, was involved in a car crash that killed both his wife and daughter last May, and Badger great Alando Tucker had to step in to coaching duties this season.

When the Badgers clinched a share of the Big Ten title on Saturday at Indiana, Gard said he couldn’t wait to bring the trophy to Moore to see. Just imagine what he’ll do when he has a Coach of the Year trophy to bring to a coach who has meant so much to so many people.