ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg recently broke down the sudden head coaching vacancy in Madison during a segment for College Football Live.

Asked about why the program is making a decision now on Paul Chryst, Rittenberg pointed to the team’s downward slide since making an appearance in the 2019 B1G Championship. The Badgers have also been losing games that the program is not accustomed to losing, including the home loss to Washington State this season.

“(Wisconsin AD Chris McIntosh) saw a program that’s gone 15-10 since making its last B1G Championship in 2019,” explained Rittenberg. “He saw a program that wasn’t making enough offensive progress at the quarterback position. He saw a program that was losing games that they just don’t typically lose at Wisconsin, and that’s why you fire a coach that’s won 72% of his games.”

Asked about serious candidates for the job, Rittenberg sees interim Jim Leonhard as a legitimate possibility. Wisconsin native Lance Leipold and former Badger DCs Dave Aranda and Dave Doeren are also options.

“Interim coach Jim Leonhard is not your typical interim coach. He was always looked at as the potential successor to Paul Chryst,” Rittenberg said. “He’s turned down a number of jobs, including the Green Bay Packers defensive role, to stay with his alma mater.

“If it’s not Leonhard, look to Lance Leipold at Kansas. Also, a couple of former Wisconsin DCs in current Power 5 roles. Dave Aranda at Baylor and Dave Doeren at NC State. If they want previous head coaching experience, those two could certainly get calls.”