Former University of Wisconsin quarterback Brooks Bollinger is joining ex-UW offensive coordinator Paul Chryst’s staff at Pitt, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported Sunday.
Bollinger will coach quarterbacks. He is the sixth assistant with UW ties to be hired by Chryst, who was named Panthers coach in mid-December. UW assistants Bob Bostad, Joe Rudolph and Dave Huxtable followed Chryst to Pitt, and former UW assistant Jim Hueber and ex-Badgers running back Eddie Faulkner also joined the staff.
Faulkner later left Pitt to join Bret Bielema’s staff at UW, and Bostad left to coach the offensive line for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Bollinger was a four-year starter for the Badgers from 1999 to 2002, leading the team to a Big Ten title and a Rose Bowl victory as a freshman. Chryst, a former Badgers quarterback himself, was UW’s tight ends coach when Bollinger was a senior.
Bollinger was a sixth-round draft choice of the New York Jets and had a six-year NFL career that also included stints with the Minnesota Vikings and the Dallas Cowboys. He played two seasons for the UFL’s Florida Tuskers before retiring and landing a job as a high school coach in the Twin Cities.
He led Hill-Murray to the Minnesota Class 4A semifinals last fall.
"I think it was an extremely difficult decision for me, but also a great opportunity,'' Bollinger told the Pioneer Press. "I am excited for the opportunity at Pitt. Also, it is so hard to leave Hill-Murray. It was a special place to me while I was there. They are great people and is a great place. I am so thankful for the opportunity to have been there.''