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Browns tried to lure Wisconsin's Gary Andersen to Cleveland

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It is safe to say the Cleveland Browns are going through a rebuilding period just now.

Today they fired their GM, Michael Lombardi, who had been in place for a little over 11 months, and they recently employed Mike Pettine as their new head-coach on January 23.

But it emerged today that Wisconsin Badgers' Gary Andersen could have been the man charged with picking up the pieces in Cleveland, after the franchise secretly interviewed the coach last month.

NFL analyst Ian Rapoport tweeted the news Tuesday just hours after the franchise had announced their boardroom adjustments.

And Andersen quickly released a statement addressing the story:

"Officials from the Cleveland Browns contacted me to talk about their head coaching vacancy.

"After our initial conversation, I decided not to pursue the position. I am committed to the University of Wisconsin and the student-athletes program," the statement read.

Andersen only joined up with the Badgers in December 2012, leading the Big Ten team to a 9-4 record last season.

The former Utah State head coach has reaffirmed his desire to stay on with Wisconsin however and seems to have dodged a bullet by killing Browns discussions at source:

"I look forward to the start of spring football in a couple of weeks and turning the focus to preparing for 2014," he told supporters.

New Cleveland GM Ray Farmer admitted today that he was not present for the interview of eventual hire Mike Pettine.

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Cleveland Browns
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