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Cindy Alvarez: Past, Present, Future


Saturday Barry Alvarez coaches his last home football game of his career.

Cindy Alvarez has stood by her husband for their last 16 years in Madison. She's been a supporter of UW athletics and in some ways, a coach herself.

While his era comes to a close, she looks back at the glorious past and ahead to an exciting new future.

"What were your expectations?" I ask her.

I probably didn't have as many as Barry because I was unaware of the magnitude of what had to be accomplished here.

But in just 16 years, Barry brought the UW team back from the grave and into the spotlight.

Some of my greatest memories... watching the game from a hospital room when he had knee surgery, winning back to back Rose Bowls, says Alvarez, "When you sit back and think of the total picture, how fortunate we are, we came here, he lived his dream, he realized his dream, we were able to stay here and enjoy it, you couldn't ask for anything better."

"What are you thinking about going into tomorrow, the last home game at the stadium that was rebuilt by your husband?" I ask of Saturday's game against Iowa.

I've cried everyday," she says as her eyes fill with tears, "I'll cry. It will be hard and exciting. Of Barry, she says, "He's denying it, and he is saying over and over, it's the seniors last game, it's a big game against Iowa, but I know he doesn't want to face it right yet.

Barry plans to stay on as UW Athletic Director, but the move means big changes in the Alvarez household.

Well I have to start cooking again," Alvarez says with a laugh, "That's a worry, he hasn't been home for dinner since 19,7... well for years. And I'm going to look for a new hobby for him, I really am.

Now Cindy Alvarez is focusing on her hope for the future.

I will be thrilled that my stomach will not be in knots on Saturday," she says, "However, I hope my role will be supportive. I think we'll be really busy with university, I think we'll be able to go to more sporting events. We can take this athletic department to another level and I'm excited about that.

And she's excited about her extra time with her husband.

We've done a good job of bouncing stuff off of each other and we laugh everyday and I want to laugh everyday in the future.

Cindy says to develop UW's program into the successful one it is today, there were sacrifices on the family front.

But she says she would do it all over again.


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