Once news was released Tuesday afternoon that Wisconsin head coach Brett Bielema was lured to Arkansas (coincidentally, former Pitt athletic director Jeff Long is the AD at Arkansas), it caused a firestorm of rumors and opinions with fans and on local media outlets that current Pitt head coach Paul Chryst would be a logical candidate to be considered for the now-vacant head coaching position at Wisconsin.
Chryst is a Wisconsin native and former offensive coordinator of the Badgers before he was hired at Pitt last season after the sudden departure of former head coach Todd Graham.
It was even reported that Wisconsin players were tweeting that they wanted their former offensive coordinator to return to the Badgers.
When Chryst took the job at Pitt, he stated in his opening press conference that he did not consider the position to be a "stepping stone" and that he was commiting to Pitt for the long-term to rebuild a program that had been in turmoil due to three head coaches (and two interim head coaches) being in charge of the program in one year's time.
In order to squelch the rumors that Chryst could become the fourth former Pitt coach in the last three years (not including two interim head coaches),
the University of Pittsburgh Athletic Department released a statement Tuesday night from Paul Chrsyt that reinforced the promise he made to the Pitt community on the day he was introduced as Pitt's head coach in December.
The statement in it's entirety:
“I understand the speculation surrounding my name given today’s developments. I am committed to the Pitt football program and the University of Pittsburgh. I am focusing all my time and energy on our team’s bowl game preparation and recruiting a great group of young men to join our program and this outstanding university. We are working hard every day to re-establish this program and I am excited about the future of Pitt football.”
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