Gard named Big Ten Coach of the Year

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MADISON, Wis. (WSAW)- Two days after clinching a share of the Big Ten regular season title, Badgers head coach Greg Gard has been named the Big Ten Coach of the year.

It's the first time Gard has won the award. Wisconsin has won eight games in a row entering the Big Ten tournament, where they'll be the number one seed. Gard is the first Badgers head coach to win the award since Bo Ryan was a co-winner in 2015.

The Badgers have overcome obstacle after obstacle on their way to their 21-10 record. A car accident last May claimed the lives of assistant coach Howard Moore's wife and daughter, while leaving Moore himself with serious burns. He later suffered a heart attack as he continues to try to recover.

During the season, the Badgers lost one of their best scorers, Kobe King, when he left the program all together in late January. Weeks later, strength and conditioning coach Erik Helland was forced to resign following his use of a racial epithet around multiple players.

The Badgers will open Big Ten tournament play on Friday against the winner of Michigan-Rutgers the day prior.