The head coaches that led University of Wisconsin teams into the Kohl Center era and the arena’s lead benefactor will be honored Wednesday as the first members of the Kohl Center Legends Walk.
Former Badgers men’s basketball coach Dick Bennett, women’s basketball coach Jane Albright, men’s hockey coach Jeff Sauer and U.S. Sen. Herb Kohl are due to be recognized.
Kohl, a 1956 UW-Madison graduate who was in the U.S. Senate from 1989 to 2013, donated $25 million in 1998 toward Kohl Center construction. At the time, it was the largest private donation in school history.
Bennett, Albright and Sauer all were coaches of Badgers teams when the Kohl Center opened in 1998.
In five-plus seasons under Bennett, UW made three appearances in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament and a Final Four trip in 2000.
Albright led the Badgers to the 2000 Women’s NIT title at the Kohl Center and directed five NCAA tournament teams at UW.
Sauer, who passed away in 2017, won three NCAA championships in a 20-year career at UW, winning a school-record 489 games.