MADISON -- Matt Lepay was there when the Wisconsin Badgers lost 10 football games in one season, and he was there when they won the Rose Bowl. Now, Lepay wants to help Badgers' fans retrace those steps with his new book "Why Not Wisconsin?"
"I wrote it reluctantly. I am a broadcaster who wrote a book. I am not really an author. I am a little uncomfortable with that label but it was fun, even for me, kind of going back down memory lane," Lepay said.
Lepay came to Madison in the late 1980s, and has seen his role with broadcasts grow -- right along with the collective success of the athletic department.
"The first game I attended here at Camp Randall in 1988, the announced attendance was 38,000, which meant there were more empty seats than occupied seats, but the shame of it was there were good players -- guys like Troy Vincent, Don Davey, four-time All-American Chad Vandezande, Dan Kissling, Tim Knoeck. There were good players, but unfortunately, there weren't enough," Lepay said.
Lepay has had a perfect seat for all the Badgers action over the last quarter century, and it is that perspective that unspools -- both good and bad, in his new book.
"I don't know if there's anything in there that I would call overly critical, but I do talk about uncomfortable moments during coaching changes and that sort of thing. I think for a Badgers' fan, it will be a nice, breezy, enjoyable read, and give you some perspective on how the expectations have changed around here over the last 20-25 years," Lepay said.
The forward in Lepay's book is written by Brad Nessler, and the final chapter was written by Lepay's wife.
"Those are probably the best two chapters in the book. My wife, one, Brad two, and me in the middle," Lepay said.
Lepay will be in the radio booth at Camp Randall Stadium on Saturday, September 22nd when Wisconsin hosts Texas-El Paso.