Former Wisconsin coach Bo Ryan now officially a member of the college basketball Hall of Fame

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Former Wisconsin coach Bo Ryan took his place among the best in college basketball Sunday night, joining a star-studded group as part of the 2017 National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame class.

The winningest coach in program history, Ryan took the Badgers to the NCAA tournament all 14 years he was in Madison, including a pair of Final Fours. That was on top of the success he had in turning UW-Platteville into a Division III power in the late 1980s and 1990s, winning four national championships.

Ryan retired in December 2015, leaving the program to his long-time assistant Greg Gard, who was in attendance with his team, including nine players that played for Ryan.

In addition to Ryan, the 2017 class included Wake Forest’s Tim Duncan, Duke’s Jay Williams, Indiana’s Scott May, Gonzaga’s John Stockton, Creighton’s Paul Silas and Purdue’s Rick Mount.

Here is a sampling of what Ryan discussed with hosts Fran Fraschilla and Doug Gottlieb at the Midland Theatre in downtown Kansas City.

What growing up in Chester, Penn., taught him:

“Without a doubt being able to handle yourself but not always [being] physical. Be able to handle yourself mentally. Know where to pick your fights. Where you need to stand up. Where you need to make sure you don’t back down. Because Chester will challenge anybody when they’re young into being somebody who can deal with things in life. I really owe a lot to Chester.”

Wisconsin’s ability to maintain excellence unlike it ever had before:

“One thing I always did was that every assistant coach that I hired was a teacher…What I realized was that the most important thing is, are you developing the players on and off the court. And I want to hire teachers. People that know the game, can instruct the game, can disseminate information to the players. That’s what I tried to do with the staff.

“Everybody that worked in my office was a team player. I never used the term about [having] all the oars in the water [rowing as one]. It’s very popular right now, but that’s absolutely, positively the reason that we were steady, successful and not trying to do things that we couldn’t. We were who we were. The guys bought into it. And I would rather take a guy that had a lot of questions rather than the guys who had a lot of answers. And we did a lot of nice things with the guys that wanted to get better and learn.”

On Greg Gard’s ascension to the top spot:

“It’s Greg Gard’s team for a reason. He paid his dues. He was very loyal. And I watched him go through things in his life knowing he could handle the big stage. Not everybody can handle the things that are going on now … But I knew he would do it the right way. And he will continue to do that with the staff that he has.

“I’ve had some very good assistant coaches that have done very well in the game, but Greg was a guy who stayed, stayed, had some opportunities but in my mind, and as Coach Alvarez knows, in my mind, he was the guy that I really wanted to see take the program over. And fortunately it worked.”

How his patented swing offense came to be:

“When I was an assistant coach at Wisconsin [in the 1970s] for Bill Cofield, who gave me my first opportunity to coach in college — and I’ll be forever thankful — we would do live scouting reports … let me tell you the coaches I scouted. Jud Heathcote, Johnny Moore, Lou Henson, Bobby Knight, Lee Rose and then Gene Keady, who were great teachers, great coaches. I’m doing these scouting reports and I’m getting all these different offenses, no tape, no film. And there were certain things that I liked from each one.

“In the swing, I put together a motion offense, four out, one in, and I looked at it one day in practice. We had a window [high] up in the [practice facility] at UW-Platteville, I’m looking at it and we’re changing sides of the floor. Every coach says change sides of the floor, move the ball and bodies. It looked like a swing going back and forth. About two or three swings. So that’s why I named it the swing.”

Going to his first Division I Final Four in 2014 just months after his dad, Butch, passed away:

“That was really tough, because he had passed away at the end of August (2013). He had always said, ‘You’re going to have your team here [at the Final Four] one day.’ I said, ‘Well, dad, that would be great. But isn’t this fun, you and I getting to bond at the Final Four?’ And then he passes away six months later and we beat Arizona to go to the Final Four.

“That was a tough interview with [the late] Craig Sager afterwards … [Butch] wasn’t there. But he was there. I felt his presence. And then to do it again [in 2015], I think I was a little more relaxed the second time. Little more in tune with everything. The experience of the Final Four, I wish everybody could have the opportunity.”

LISTEN: Bo Ryan on “The Joe & Ebo Show”

Bo Ryan talks Wisconsin and the Hall of Fame

MADISON — Former Wisconsin basketball coach Bo Ryan will be inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame  this week in Kansas City.

Despite watching a lot of basketball, and golfing even more, Ryan took a few minutes out of his morning to talk with the Joe & Ebo Show on some of his favorite career memories, what he’s seen from the Badgers and the honor of getting into the Hall of Fame.

Take a listen below to hear from the all-time winningest coach in Wisconsin men’s basketball history:

The Joe & Ebo Experience: Bo Ryan Talks Hall of Fame

MADISON| Bo Ryan, legendary Wisconsin Basketball coach, is headed to the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame

Despite watching a lot of basketball and golfing even more, Bo Ryan took a few minutes out of his morning to talk with the Joe & Ebo Show on some of his favorite memories, Badgers basketball and getting into the Hall of Fame.

Take a listen below to hear from the all-time winningest coach in Wisconsin Men’s Basketball history:

Wisconsin will face Virginia in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge

MADISON — For a third time in six years Wisconsin will face Virginia in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge.

The conferences made that announcement Thursday morning, setting the stage for the 19th year of the event that pits two of the best basketball conferences in the country against one another every November.

The Badgers and Cavaliers met in the 2012 and 2013 Challenge, with each team winning on the other’s home court.

This game will take place in Charlottesville and will feature the first meeting between Wisconsin coach Greg Gard and Virginia coach Tony Bennett. The two served on the same staff in Madison in 2002 and 2003 as assistants under former coach Bo Ryan before Bennett, a Wisconsin native, left to take an assistant job at Washington State.

When Ryan announced the 2015-’16 season would be his last, many pointed to Bennett, who has been at Virginia since 2009 and has won two ACC titles, as a possible successor. That didn’t materialize as Gard would eventually get the job after serving in an interim basis following Ryan’s abrupt departure in December of 2015.

Wisconsin is 9-9 all-time in the Challenge, including winning three of their last four. Virginia, meanwhile, owns the third-best record among ACC teams at 11-6.

Bo Ryan voted into College Basketball Hall of Fame

MADISON, Wis. – Former Wisconsin head men’s basketball coach Bo Ryan will take his rightful place among the legends of college hoops this fall when he is inducted into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame.

Ryan is one of eight individuals that make up the Class of 2017, joining Wake Forest’s Tim Duncan, Winston-Salem State’s Cleo Hill, Indiana’s Scott May, Purdue’s Rick Mount, Creighton’s Paul Silas, Gonzaga’s John Stockton and Duke’s Jay Williams.

The 2017 Hall of Fame Induction Celebration will take place on Sunday, Nov. 19 at the Arvest Bank Theatre at the Midland in Kansas City, Missouri. The Wisconsin men’s basketball team will then participate in the Hall of Fame Classic over the next two days, along with Baylor, Creighton and UCLA.

The National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame is located inside the College Basketball Experience (CBE), a world-class experiential entertainment facility adjacent to Kansas City’s Sprint Center.

“We are honored to welcome another esteemed class into the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame,” said Reggie Minton, deputy executive director of the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) and chair of the Hall of Fame selection panel. “Collectively, this group broke barriers, won championships, set records, competed for their country, and left a lasting mark on the coaching profession. Each inductee is uniquely deserving of a permanent place in our game’s history.”

With a remarkable 27 postseason appearances on his resume, Ryan took basketball to new heights in the state of Wisconsin. Ryan’s head coaching career began at UW-Platteville, where he won 353 games from 1984 through 1999 and guided the program to four NCAA Division III national titles. After two seasons at Milwaukee, Ryan spent 14-plus seasons with the Badgers, piling up a school-record 364 victories. His UW teams never failed to reach the NCAA Tournament, never finished lower than fourth in the Big Ten standings and won a total of seven Big Ten championships. A four-time Big Ten Coach of the Year, Ryan’s Wisconsin career was highlighted by a Final Four appearance in 2014 and a run to the national championship game in 2015 – his final full season on the sidelines.

The National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame, a program of the NABC Foundation, inducted its first class in 2006. That class included the game’s inventor, Dr. James Naismith, and possibly its greatest coach, John Wooden. Since then, 10 more classes have been inducted, including the likes of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Larry Bird, Earvin “Magic” Johnson and Dominique Wilkins. More information about Hall of Fame weekend can be found at

National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame
Class of 2017

Tim Duncan, Player, Wake Forest
· Averaged 16.5 points, 12.3 rebounds, 3.8 blocks and 2.3 assists over four years at Wake Forest, leading the school to four-straight NCAA Tournaments.
· Three-time NABC Defensive Player of the Year, two-time ACC Player of the Year, two-time consensus All-American, and the 1997 consensus National Player of the Year.
· Selected No. 1 overall by the San Antonio Spurs in the 1997 NBA Draft.
· Won five NBA titles, two NBA MVP awards, and three NBA Finals MVPs with the Spurs.

Cleo Hill, Player, Winston-Salem State
· The second-highest scorer in Winston-Salem State history, averaged 25.4 points per game over four seasons.
· Led the program to back-to-back CIAA titles as a junior and senior.
· Two-time All-CIAA selection and a NAIA first-team All-American in 1961.
· Picked eighth overall by the St. Louis Hawks in the 1961 NBA Draft, becoming the first HBCU player ever taken in the first round.

Scott May, Player, Indiana
· Leader on 1975-76 Indiana squad that finished a perfect 32-0 – the most recent NCAA Division I team to complete an undefeated season.
· NABC, Naismith, AP, Helms Foundation, Rupp and Sporting News National Player of the Year in 1976.
· Consensus All-American as a junior and senior.
· Drafted second overall in 1976 by the Chicago Bulls.

Rick Mount, Player, Purdue
· All-time leading scorer in Purdue history with 2,323 career points.
· Guided Purdue to the 1969 Big Ten title, the program’s first-ever NCAA Tournament, and an appearance in the national title game.
· Two-time consensus All-American and three-time All-Big Ten First Team selection.
· No. 1 overall selection in the 1970 ABA Draft by the Indiana Pacers.

Paul Silas, Player, Creighton
· Ranks sixth overall and first among three-year players in Division I history with 1,751 career rebounds.
· Third all-time at Creighton with a career scoring average of 20.5 points per game.
· Earned multiple All-America honors in each of his three varsity seasons.
· Won three NBA titles as a player, and later coaches four different NBA franchises.

John Stockton, Player, Gonzaga
· Gonzaga’s all-time steals leader and ranks fourth in career assists.
· 1984 West Coast Athletic Conference Player of the Year after averaging 20.9 points, 7.2 assists and 3.9 steals per game.
· Played 19 seasons with the Utah Jazz, finishing as the NBA’s all-time leader in both steals and assists.
· Won Olympic gold medals with the 1992 USA Basketball “Dream Team” and again in 1996.

Jay Williams, Player, Duke
· Led Duke to a 95-13 record during his three seasons, including the 2001 national championship.
· Two-time consensus All-American, two-time All-ACC First Team selection, NABC Player of the Year in 2001, and the consensus National Player of the Year in 2002.
· Ranks second in assists per game, second in steals per game, third in made three-pointers and seventh in scoring average in Duke history.
· Selected second overall in the 2002 NBA Draft by the Chicago Bulls.

Bo Ryan, Coach, Wisconsin, Milwaukee and Wisconsin-Platteville
· Won 747 career games and made 27 postseasons appearances as the head coach at three different college programs.
· Guided Wisconsin-Platteville to four NCAA Division III national titles.
· Won a school-record 364 games at Wisconsin, leading the Badgers to the NCAA Tournament in each of his 14 seasons, including a pair of Final Fours.
· Captured seven Big Ten championships and four Big Ten Coach of the Year awards.


Bo Ryan among 14 finalists for Basketball Hall of Fame

NEW ORLEANS — Former University of Wisconsin coach Bo Ryan was announced on Saturday as one of 14 finalists for the 2017 class of the Basketball Hall of Fame.

Ryan holds the career wins total record at Wisconsin (364), a full 99 wins more than the No. 2 coach on the list, Bud Foster. The ex-Badgers coach also holds a Big Ten conference record for best win percentage (.717) among coaches with six or more years in the conference.

The full list of finalists is below:

Tracy McGrady player)
Chris Webber (player)
Tim Hardaway (player)
Sidney Moncrief (player)
Rudy Tomjanovich (coach)
Bill Self (coach)
Bo Ryan (coach)
Kim Mulkey (coach)
Rollie Massimino (coach)
Muffet McGraw (coach)
Rebecca Lobo (player)
Robert Hughes (coach)
Hugh Evans (referee)
1954-58 Wayland Baptist Univ. (team)

2017 class inductees will be announced on Apr. 3, prior to the NCAA championship game.

Report: Bo Ryan Admits To Affair, But Cleared Of Misuse

By Eric Rogers
Mar. 5, 2016 2:27 p.m. CT
MADISON, Wis. — According to a recent report, the University of Wisconsin investigated the allegations that former head basketball coach Bo Ryan used school funds to carry out costs associated with an extramarital affair.
In the February 2015 investigation, the UW found no evidence that Ryan misused school resources, although Ryan told school officials two months prior that he had been involved in a romantic relationship with someone other than his wife.
The investigation began at the request of a woman who claims Ryan was “manipulative, a liar, cheater and deceptive,” and “unworthy of representing the university.”
The UW responded to the woman with the following email:
The University also stated in the original report that Ryan’s abrupt retirement in December was of his own volition and not an attempt to hide from the rumors or to repair a relationship with his family.