Barry Alvarez had high praise for reports of the Badgers’ newest head coach.

The former Wisconsin athletic director called Luck Fickell a “home run hire” and says that fans have a lot to look forward to per Jim Polzin with Badger Extra. Fickell coached at Cincinnati from 2017 to 2022 and led the Bearcats to their first-ever College Football Playoff appearance a season ago.

Many around the Wisconsin program, including Alvarez, believe that the reported hire will lead to big things for the Badgers.

“There’s a new era and I’m excited for it,” Alvarez said. “Our fans should be excited for it.”

Alvarez made sure to give credit to Jim Leonhard, who took over as interim head coach after Paul Chryst was fired. Leonhard led the Badgers to a 6-6 season this year and managed to keep morale high through the coaching change.

“You know what, I love Jimmy,” Alvarez said. “I think Jimmy would have done a good job. I hate to go there. Jimmy’s done a great job and he’s a great coach. I don’t want to say anything. All I know, I love Jimmy. Jimmy’s done a great job for us, a tremendous job, and I have all the respect in the world for him. I don’t want to go any further. I’m just going to say good things about our new guy.”

Nothing on Fickell has been officially announced at this point, but reports indicate a decision is likely to be announced within the next 24 hours.