Wisconsin plans to pay fired coach Paul Chryst a buyout of $11 million, well short of the $20 million remaining on his contract.
Chryst agreed to a reduced payment, Wisconsin athletic director Chris McIntosh said, but he did not confirm the dollar figure as reported by multiple media outlets.
The Badgers (2-3, 0-2 Big Ten) are coming off a 34-10 loss to Illinois and former coach Bret Bielema, with a visit to Northwestern up next.
“It’s a grim reminder of the world we live in. I’ve been in that rodeo,” Bielema said Monday.
Wisconsin also fell to Ohio State and Washington State earlier in the season.
“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,” McIntosh said in a statement. “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.”
Chryst, 56, was in his eighth season at Wisconsin. He led the Badgers to a 67-26 record, including a 43-18 mark in Big Ten play. Wisconsin also finished as champion or co-champion in the conference three times (2016, 2017, 2019) under Chryst.
He helped the Badgers win 10 or more games on four occasions, but was just 15-10 since the start of the 2020 season.
Defensive coordinator Jim Leonhard was named interim head coach.