At this rate, Wisconsin is probably wishing it found a way to hang onto Paul Chryst. One thing's for certain - the fans have got to be ridiculously upset.
Chryst snagged his second Wisconsin assistant, picking up linebackers coach Dave Huxtable for his Defensive Coordinator as Greg mentioned yesterday.
The last time we heard about him, ironically, was when he was ... turning down the Pitt job. Huxtable said just a few days ago that his return to Wisconsin was 100%. I'm not one for judging too quickly, but seriously, if we're getting on Todd Graham, I'm at least interested as to why Huxtable said what he did when it clearly wasn't true. You can say he just had a change of heart, but it's pretty hard to go from 100% to 0%.
I won't go into the full history on Huxtable, but if you're looking for a good rundown (or if you just want to see how tough this guy really looks) in addition to the one Greg put up, here's his bio from the Badgers' site.
Okay, seriously, name another Huxtable besides Heathcliff (or Rudy, Theo, Vanessa, et al). Now that that's out of the way ... about the hire. FootballScoop, voted him the linebackers coach of the year this season. Two of his linebackers this season racked up more than 130 tackles, ranking them No. 8 and No. 11 in the nation.
Besides that, though, one thing I really like about the hire is that he has several years of experience coaching as a defensive coordinator at North Carolina and UCF. Not only was he a coordinator, but at the D-I level. Bottom line is that means there should be little transition time, even though he was a linebackers coach this season.
But Huxtable might not be all ... there's more.
Word is that Wisconsin's tight ends coach Joe Rudolph may be coming to Pitt as well and that's where things really get interesting. Now, Rudolph got a promotion of sorts as he's been named the offensive line coach and run-game coordinator with Pitt's hiring of Bob Bostad, but that might not be enough.
Rudolph grew up near Pittsburgh and could be headed here to join Huxtable if he's not named as offensive coordinator or co-offensive coordinator. If Chryst can somehow get Rudolph on his staff, it could be a big deal for recruiting:
Another UW source said before the Rose Bowl the ability of head coach Bret Bielema’s ability to keep Rudolph, who is the recruiting coordinator, was critical for the program.
"Parents and kids love him," the source said.
Rudolph is the ideal dual-threat - a great coach and recruiter. Another thing to like? Where he's been primarily recruiting:
One of Rudolph's greatest strengths as a recruiter is his attention to detail, according to Bielema. He's also shown a knack for finding hidden gems; one of the eight players UW has landed during the past two recruiting cycles from the state of Ohio - Rudolph's primary recruiting territory - is Chris Borland, a lightly recruited linebacker who was the Big Ten Conference's Freshman of the Year last season.
Now, I'm not foolish enough to think Pitt is going to start snatching up kids destined for Ohio State - especially with Urban Meyer around. But it does help that he's been in the area and that he's well liked.
Okay, back to football. Stay with me now.
Wisconsin may be looking at Jay Norvell, a co-offensive coordinator at Oklahoma, not Rudolph, as their next coordinator. He was previously an assistant at Wisconsin, so there's some history there. If you're a Pitt fan, it sounds like you're rooting for Norvell to get that job.
Oh yeah, and Wisconsin fans are, in the words of Jim Rome, gripping.