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Wisconsin reportedly set to hire Pittsburgh’s Chryst as new coach

Pittsburgh coach Paul Chryst is expected to become the Wisconsin Badgers’ new head football coach, according to reports Friday.

ESPN.com confirmed a Milwaukee Journal Sentinel story that the former Wisconsin assistant has been selected by athletic director Barry Alvarez.

An announcement could come as early as Friday, but a Pittsburgh source told ESPN that Chryst had not informed Pitt officials he was leaving.

Chryst, 49, would replace Gary Andersen, who left the Badgers on Wednesday after two seasons to take the head coaching job at Oregon State.

The Journal Sentinel reported that Alvarez, who flew to Tampa, Fla., on Thursday for an Outback Bowl promotion, was able to meet with Chryst. Alvarez announced Thursday that he will return to coaching in another bowl game for the Badgers’ Jan. 1 Outback Bowl matchup against Auburn.

Chryst is 19-19 in three seasons at Pitt. He was hired in December 2011 to replace Todd Graham, who left for Arizona State after less than a year on the job. Chryst is the Panthers’ fourth coach in 13 months, following Dave Wannstedt, Mike Haywood and Graham.

Chryst, a Madison native, was quarterback for the Badgers from 1986 to 1988. He served as the Badgers’ tight ends coach in 2002, and oversaw the offense from 2005 to 2011. He also was tight ends coach with the San Diego Chargers from 1999 to 2001 and held assistant coaching positions at Oregon State, Illinois State and UW-Platteville.

“It is our practice not to comment on the personnel searches of other institutions,” Pittsburgh said in a statement, according to the Journal Sentinel. “Paul Chryst is the University of Pittsburgh’s head coach, has been recruiting all week on behalf of the program and will begin preparations for Pitt’s bowl game this weekend.”

Pitt will face Houston in the Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl on Jan. 2 on the campus of TCU.

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