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BREAKING NEWS: UW's Nuttycomb calls it quits after 30 years

BREAKING NEWS: UW's Nuttycomb calls it quits after 30 years

MADISON, Wis. -- After 30 years, 26 Big Ten Conference championships and countless contributions to his sport, Ed Nuttycombe is retiring from his position as head coach of the Wisconsin men’s track and field program.

Nuttycombe announced his retirement Friday, following the completion of his 30th season as the Badgers’ head coach.

“I just feel the time is right,” Nuttycombe said. “There is probably never a ‘good time’ to walk away from something that has meant so much to you for so long, but I’m excited about what the future holds for me and my family.”

“Ed’s career is unparalleled,” UW Director of Athletics Barry Alvarez said. “The success is obvious when you look at the numbers, but the way he succeeded with integrity and touched so many people across his program and his sport is what speaks volumes about the job he did as a head coach.

“To be able to adapt to all the changes in society and in student-athletes over the last 30 years while maintaining such a high level of success is truly remarkable.”

“I’ve been fortunate to have the opportunity to work with Ed as a colleague and as an administrator during my career,” Alvarez added. “I hate to see him go, but I wish the best for Ed, Diane and their family in retirement.”

Nuttycombe will remain with the Badgers through the summer, with his official retirement date yet to be determined. He plans on keeping his residence in Madison with his wife, Diane, and continuing to be involved with the track program in his retirement.

“I certainly want to remain part of the program at some level, and I’ll have that discussion with whoever succeeds me,” he said. “These guys haven’t seen the last of me.”

UW’s next coach would be fortunate to have Nuttycombe’s expertise to lean on. He leaves the head coach’s post with a record unequaled in the history of UW and the Big Ten.

No coach in conference history -- in any sport -- has won as many Big Ten titles as the 26 Nuttycombe’s teams collected, including the 2012 outdoor and 2013 indoor crowns.

Add in cross country -- a program for which he was responsible but didn’t directly coach -- and UW collected 52 Big Ten championships under Nuttycombe’s watch. That’s 15 more than the rest of the league combined (37) since he took over the Badgers program in 1984.

Indiana and Minnesota are tied for the next highest totals in that span -- with nine each.

Since 2000, Wisconsin has won a total of 30 Big Ten titles between cross country and track, with the rest of the conference combining for 10.

On 10 occasions under Nuttycombe’s direction, the Badgers swept the cross country and indoor and outdoor track titles in the same season to earn the Big Ten “Triple Crown.”

After Nuttycombe took over the Badgers’ running programs, UW claimed four NCAA championships in cross country, most recently in 2011.

The crowning achievement of Nuttycombe’s decorated career, however, was winning the team title -- the first ever for a Big Ten program -- at the 2007 NCAA Indoor Championships. The national championship represented one of the Badgers’ four NCAA podium finishes under Nuttycombe, which included a third-place finish indoors in 2013.

For his part in UW’s success, Nuttycombe earned Big Ten Coach of the Year honors an unprecedented 22 times. He also was named Great Lakes Regional Coach of the Year by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association 11 times since 1995, including for the 2013 indoor season.

After leading the Badgers to the 2007 NCAA title, Nuttycombe was named USTFCCCA National Coach of the Year.

However, for Nuttycombe, it was always about the athletes wearing “Wisconsin” across their chests.

Ten Badgers combined to claim a total of 11 individual NCAA championships under Nuttycombe, including the five national titles claimed by Chris Solinsky from 2005-07. UW had three champions outdoors in 1997 alone, with Reggie Torian in the 110 hurdles, Pascal Dobert in the 3000 steeplechase and James Dunkleberger in the decathlon.

Solinsky’s school-record 11 All-America citations were among the remarkable total of 187 All-America awards collected by UW athletes during his tenure.

Nuttycombe’s program produced five Olympians, including three that competed on the sport’s ultimate stage at the 2012 Games in London: Mohammed Ahmed, Evan Jager and Matt Tegenkamp.

 Get more at uwbadgers.com

 

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