Paul Chryst’s tenure as Wisconsin’s head coach is over.
Wisconsin fired Chryst on Sunday, just one day after a 34-10 loss to Illinois and just eight days after a 52-21 loss to Ohio State.
Jim Leonhard, who has been Wisconsin’s defensive coordinator since 2017 (and a Badgers assistant coach since 2016), will serve as the Badgers’ interim head coach for the remainder of the season.
Chryst’s firing comes after a 2-3 start to the 2022 season for the Badgers, who also suffered a 17-14 loss to Washington State in their only non-conference game against a Power 5 team this season before starting Big Ten play with back-to-back losses.
"After a heartfelt and authentic conversation with Coach Chryst about what is in the long-term best interest of our football program, I have concluded that now is the time for a change in leadership," Wisconsin athletic director Chris McIntosh said in a news release. "Paul is a man of integrity who loves his players. I have great respect and admiration for Paul and the legacy of him and his family at the University of Wisconsin.
"I also have confidence in Jim Leonhard to guide the program for the remainder of the season. There is still a lot of season left to play and I know Jim will do a great job while the program is under his leadership."
Chryst finishes his tenure as Wisconsin’s head coach, which began in 2015, with a 67-26 record. He led the Badgers to three Big Ten West titles but never won a Big Ten championship, as the Badgers lost to Penn State in the 2016 Big Ten Championship Game and to Ohio State in both the 2017 and 2019 Big Ten Championship Games.