This past off season, Bret Bielema hired six new assistant coaches to get the Badgers back to the Big Ten title game and a Rose Bowl berth. New receivers coach Zach Azzanni explains how he sees the transition from his perspective.
"Change always involves discomfort; change always involves risk because it's unknown. The new coaches, we really, really respect what's been done here. We understand the coaches who came before us did one hell of a job, and are probably why we're here. Our kids know we respect what they've done in the past, how they've been coached, but we're also going to be ourselves." receivers coach Zach Azzanni explained.
"As far as everyone patting you on the back and saying we've had great years, that's great, but personally, I haven't done anything here. As new coaches, we all have an edge to prove ourselves and not let this thing go backward."
Azzanni also offered up an interesting viewpoint on why coaching is sometimes "overrated."
"Coaching's overrated at times. If you're saying it's all about coaching, then you're saying our players aren't very good. That's how I approach it with our wideouts. If your offensive coaching is so great and now there's new coaches and we're going to be awful, then that means you guys aren't very good, either. It's about players. … Coach Bielema and Coach Alvarez have built a machine here."
According to ESPN, this off season Bielema dug up some notes he took from 2006 when he first oversaw a coaching staff. That staff taught Bielema that the best environment for assistant coaches is one where they have the freedom to express their own ideas, or as he put it, one that is more "a democracy more than a dictatorship."
Also, Bielema notes that he beleives that more coaching should get done Monday through Friday rather than on a Saturday afternoon.
"Saturday isn't the day to blow someone up. Saturday's about managing the game and making sure we have success going forward." he explained