Andersen: Wisconsin's academic standards were a reason for leaving

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Nick Bromberg
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Oregon State coach Gary Andersen said Wisconsin's academic standards were a reason why he left the Badgers.

In an interview with CBS Sports, Andersen said he was frustrated that he couldn't get some recruits into the university.

"It's been well [documented] there were some kids I couldn't get in school," the Badgers' former coach said. "That was highly frustrating to me. I lost some guys, and I told them I wasn't going to lose them.

"I think they did what they were supposed to do [academically] and they still couldn't get in. That was really hard to deal with."

Anderson also said this:

"That's not Wisconsin's fault," Andersen added. "That's Wisconsin's deal ... I want to surround myself with those kids I can get in school."

His departure from the Badgers after Oregon State coach Mike Riley replaced Nebraska coach Bo Pelini was the most surprising coaching move of the offseason. While Wisconsin is considered a good job in the Big Ten – it's right with or above Nebraska for best in the West status – Oregon State isn't in the upper echelons of the Pac-12.

After Andersen left, Wisconsin hired former offensive coordinator and Pitt head coach Paul Chryst to replace him.

Wisconsin reportedly requires more high school academic units (17) than Nebraska, Michigan State and Ohio State. And, of course, Oregon State. Andersen said he didn't expect people to understand his decision and that he took the Oregon State job without visiting Corvallis. He also said that the idea of junior-college transfers "basically became a non-[factor]."

He also refuted any notions that there was a rift between himself and athletic director and coach Barry Alvarez, who coached the Badgers in their Outback Bowl win over Auburn. Alvarez, Anderson said, was not a reason for his departure.

"He never one time stepped on anybody's toes in the football office," the coach said. "Please don't make Wisconsin sound bad in any way, shape or form. I love those kids. I truly love them."

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Nick Bromberg is the assistant editor of Dr. Saturday on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!