MADISON (WKOW) -- UW-Madison Athletic Director Barry Alvarez and UW officials say they are on the same page, when it comes to the process of hiring a successor to departed head football coach Bret Bielema.
Alvarez conceded Thursday there was criticism on campus in 2005, when he tabbed then-defensive coordinator Bielema to succeed Alvarez, as Alvarez ended a 16-year run as UW's coach. The opening was not posted as required by University rules, and some members of the UW Athletic Board said they were in the dark about Bielema's imminent hiring until just before it was announced.
Alvarez says no, unauthorized short cuts were taken.
The current coaching vacancy is posted on UW's web site, and Alvarez says the path to hiring a new coach will be inclusive.
"I will keep the board in constant contact with what I'm doing," Alvarez says.
UW-Madison chancellor David Ward says he expects the process to be appropriate.
Bielema's total salary at UW was $2.6 million, and he's going to receive as much as $3.9 million annually at the University of Arkansas if he meets incentive goals.
Ward says much of the money for a position such as the football head coach comes from boosters and other private sources. But Ward says there are still limits on what's prudent to offer a candidate, and says there will not be a "blank check" approach.
"I do know we need to be competitive, and that's probably the overriding factor to keep a successful program," Board of Regents Vice President Michael Falbo says.
The board of regents will vote on the salary of the coach hired.
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