Wisconsin football players weigh in on Chryst ousting
MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - Wisconsin football players are weighing in on the ousting of former head coach Paul Chryst for the first time since the university parted ways with him.
Wisconsin’s Keeanu Benton, Chimere Dike, Nick Herbig, Graham Mertz, John Torchio and Braelon Allen all spoke during a news conference Wednesday.
Mertz discussed the impact the decision has had on him and his teammates.
“You guys all have families right?” Mertz asked. “I don’t think its- anytime you go through something as a family, I mean, you all feel responsibility. I don’t think that this should at all fall on anybody, any one person’s shoulders and I think that’s why this group is upset. I think that’s fair. I think you have to feel that after something happens like that.”
Allen said the team will be using the change as fuel moving forward.
“I think for a lot of guys, obviously the situation isn’t easy. Nobody wanted to see Coach Chryst go,” Allen said. “For me personally, it’s fuel. Like Torch had mentioned, it’s really on us. We didn’t execute, we didn’t play the football that we needed to be play. This is a consequence of that, so I guess moving forward we just need to use it as fuel, like Coach Leonhard has said.”
Chryst was in his eighth season as the Badgers’ head coach as the decision to fire him was made. Defensive Coordinator Jim Leonhard has been named interim head coach. Leonhard took reporters’ questions at a news conference Tuesday, which typically focuses on the team’s upcoming game, but this time was peppered with more questions about how he sees his new role.
Reporting from ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg indicated that Chryst would receive an $11 million buyout.
Wisconsin will face off this Saturday against Northwestern.
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