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The UW assistant coaching search
Richard Linde, 13 December 2008, updated 19 Feb 2009

Updates to the original article (13 Dec) can be found in the table immediately below and, also, in Table 1 below, where all the rumblings are listed plus the guys who have been officially hired.

2/19/2009 -- The UW has officially announced that Dan Cozzetto will be its offensive line coach and run-game coordinator. Quarterback coach Doug Nussmeier will also be the offensive coordinator.
2/12/2009 -- The UW has announced the hiring of Jimmy Dougherty as its wide receivers coach. Dougherty has coached the last five seasons at the University of San Diego. (Link to UW announcement). Also, based on two sources, Bob Condotta is reporting that Dan Cozzetto may soon be named the offensive line coach. Cozzetto is currently the tight ends coach at ASU.
2/09/2009 -- It is being reported that offensive line coach Jim Michalczik is taking a post with the Oakland Raiders to join his friend, head coach Tom Cable. Here's a link to Bob Condotta's story.
1/27/2009 -- Seattle Times is reporting that newly hired wide receivers coach Aaron Roderick will stay at Utah for personal reasons. Link to story. Mike Anderson and Klayton Adams have been hired as graduate assistant coaches.
1/18/2009 -- Aaron Roderick (Utah) has been hired as wide receivers coach, according to this link. Also, his hire has been confirmed by the University of Washington. 
1/16/2009 -- Washington has officially confirmed the hiring of Mike Cox (linebackers), Jeff Mills (safeties), Joel Thomas (running backs), and Doug Nussmeier (quarterbacks). Utah's wide receivers coach Aaron Roderick is rumored to be in the hunt for the same position at UW. See the following link.
1-18-2009 -- Summary of assistant coaches apparently in fold:
Offensive Line Coach - Dan Cozzetto
Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks - Doug Nussmeier
Running Backs - Joel Thomas
Wide receivers - Jimmy Dougherty
Defensive Coordinator/Assistant Head Coach - Nick Holt
Defensive Line/Special Teams - Johnny Nansen
Linebackers - Mike Cox
Cornerbacks - Demetrice Martin
Safeties - Jeff Mills
1/14/2009 -- A source has told the Fresno Bee that offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier has been hired by UW to be its quarterbacks coach. According to the paper, "Nussmeier was a record-breaking quarterback for the Vandals from 1990-1994, and a number of assistant coaches who served at Idaho have been added to the Washington staff in recent weeks."

Steve Sarkisian has found a way to economize his workload. According to my thesaurus, a synonym for the word vandal is an "uprooter." Hiring one Vandal is all that is needed. You hire one Vandal, and he'll uproot other coaches for you -- maybe even PSAs from other parts of the country.

1/12/2009 -- Molly Yanity of the Seattle P-I is reporting that running backs coach Joel Thomas out of Purdue has been hired for the same position at Washington. Nothing is official from Washington yet.
1/6/2009 -- Footballscoop.com is reporting that Jeff Mills of Youngstown State and Mike Cox of the St. Louis Rams will be joining Washington's staff. They are expected to work on the defensive side of the ball, according to Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times, who speculating on the matter projects Cox as the linebackers coach and Mills as a secondary coach.
1/5/2009 -- The Seattle Times is reporting that Nick Holt, 46, of USC has accepted the defensive coordinator's post at Washington, as well as assistant head coach. UW will make an official announcement today. Molly Yanity of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer has been at the front of this story all along. Congratulations to Molly.
1/5/2009 -- According to the Seattle Times, Steve Sarkisian is still talking to USC's Nick Holt about the defensive coordinator's job. Apparently, Holt would have total control over the defense at UW, unlike his current role at USC, where evidently he's playing second fiddle to Pete Carroll. Scot Loeffler who has been rumored to be in the hunt for the quarterbacks' coaching position is apparently headed to Florida.
12/30/2008 -- According to a story on the web, which is quoting an anonymous source, Rocky Long has been hired as defensive coordinator at San Diego State. Former UW player Nigel Burton (1999) is rumored to be in the hunt for the defensive coordinator's role, according to a story published on RGJ.com. Burton's name came up in Sarkisian's first interview after being hired on Dec. 6. That source says his name came up, "because Sarkisian said he remembered coaching against Burton when Burton was at Oregon State and Sarkisian was at USC."  Put Burton's name in the weakly-rumored category. Remember that UW has fired two defensive coordinators in less than a year's time: Kent Baer (Dec 17, 2007) and Ed Donatell (around Dec 10, 2008). UW gave up a school record 451.75 yards per game in 2008, ranking 110th out of 119 teams in NCAA FBS football. Hiring a defensive coordinator is a worrisome task for Sarkisian, in my opinion. Watch for the media to turn up the heat on him in the next week or two (the old antsy trick) if this task is not accomplished sooner rather than later.
12/21/2008 -- ESPN is quoting a source who says that Ron English will be announced as the new head coach at Eastern Michigan as soon as Monday. English had been rumored for the D/C slot at UW. USC's Dennis Slutak, 36, has officially accepted the job as new director of UW football operations.
12/19/2008 -- The Seattle Times (Bob Condotta) reports that rumors have circulated that Sarkisian may have settled on current NFL assistants Kennedy Pola and Scot Loeffler as running backs coach and quarterbacks coach. The Orange County Register writes that Sarkisian told them, "We'll see if this thing (defensive coordinator) gets done in the next day or so." A report from Gary Klein of the LA Times says Nick Holt (USC) still might be in the running for D/C, though he originally had removed himself from consideration.
12/17/2008 -- This article by Molly Yanity summarizes the hires announced yesterday by UW and Steve Sarkisian. Also, see Table 1 below. Note that six assistant coaching spots are left to fill.
12/16/2008 -- Michalczik (O/C, OL), Martin (Secondary) and Nansen (DL, ST) have been officially hired, along with Jared Blank as the director of player personnel and recruiting coordinator. Yogi Roth may no longer be a candidate for QB coach. Charr Gahagan will be an assistant to the strength coach, Ivan Lewis. Official release. Reportedly Michalczik will make $350,000 annually.
12/16/2008 -- Bob Condotta reports that none of Tyrone Willingham's assistants will be retained. He writes that a source says that at least three of Sarkisian's assistants (Michalczik, Nansen, and Martin) were working at UW offices yesterday. Sark will hold a news conference today. According to the LA Daily News and Orange County Register, Rocky Seto has turned down the UW offer to be its defensive coordinator. Rocky Long is a possibility.
12/15/2008 -- Jonathan Okanes of the Contra Costa Times is reporting that California line coach Jim Michalczik will become the offensive coordinator for the new football staff at Washington. He will also coach the offensive line. Also, a rumor out of Montlake says Chris Tormey is gone.
12/14/2008 -- Bob Condotta writes, "the guys at Dawgman.com are reporting a new name as a possibility, if not the actual hire, for offensive line coach --- Cal offensive line coach Jim Michalczik." Also, some musings about Rick Mallory for tight ends coach can be found in Condotta's blog.

According to Scott Wolf of the LA Daily News, USC secondary coach Rocky Seto has been offered the defensive coordinator's job and is mulling it over. (Seto photo credit: Bobak Ha'Eri.)

According to Bob Condotta (the Seattle Times), "...current Idaho assistant Johnny Nansen is reported to have been hired as the new defensive line coach, Demetrice Martin as the secondary coach and Charlie Camp as the linebackers coach."

Condotta writes that Ivan Lewis will be the new strength coach, and current USC graduate assistant Yogi Roth has been interviewed for the QB job. Also, Al Dorsey, who is currently an administrative assistant at USC, could be a candidate to become the O-line coach.

Molly Yanity of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer writes that rumors are circulating that Chris Tormey will be staying on in a recruiting capacity and could coach tight ends.

Table 1. Updated rumblings and official hires (19 February 2009)

Name Position Status Source
Steve Sarkisian Head coach H UW
Rocky Seto Defensive coordinator DO OCR
Rocky Long Defensive coordinator OP McGrain
Ron English Defensive coordinator OP ESPN
Nick Holt Defensive coordinator H Yanity
Nigel Burton Defensive coordinator OP Hinxman
Mike Cox Linebackers H Condotta
Jeff Mills Secondary H Condotta
Joel Thomas Running backs H Yanity
Doug Nussmeier Quarterbacks; O/C H Lyght
Aaron Roderick Wide receivers DO Condotta
Kennedy Pola Running backs OP Condotta
Scot Loeffler Quarterbacks OP Condotta
Dan Cozzetto Offensive Line H Condotta
Jimmy Dougherty Wide receivers H UW
Johnny Nansen Defensive Line; special teams H UW
Demetrice Martin Secondary coach H UW
Ivan Lewis Strength Coach H UW
Charr Gahagan Assistant Strength coach H UW
Jim Michalczik O/C and Offensive line * UW
Jared Blank Recruiting coordinator H UW
Dennis Slutak Director of football operations H UW

H = hired, O = Offered the job, RH = Reportedly hired. C = Candidate, I = Interviewed, R = Rumored, FBS = footballscoop.com; O/C = Offensive coordinator; DO = Declined Offer; OP = Out of the picture, * left for Oakland Raiders


Candidates, age, present position, school/team:

Steve Sarkisian, 34, offensive coordinator, USC
Rocky Seto, 32, secondary coach, USC
Johnny Nansen, defensive line coach, Idaho
Demetrice Martin, 35, assistant coach, Mt. San Antonio
Charlie Camp, 35, defensive ends, San Jose State
Ivan Lewis, 29, assistant strength coach, USC
Yogi Roth, 27, grad assistant QBs, USC
Al Dorsey, 32, offensive administrative assistant, USC
Chris Tormey, 53, recruiting coordinator, linebackers, UW
Jim Michalczik, 42, offensive line coach, Cal
Rick Mallory, 48, offensive line coach, Memphis
Rocky Long, 58, resigned as HC New Mexico
Jared Blank, director of player personnel, USC
Ron English, 40, defensive coordinator, Louisville
Kennedy Pola, 45, running backs, USC, Jacksonville Jaguars
Scot Loeffler, Quarterbacks, Michigan, Detroit Lions
Nick Holt, 46, defensive coordinator, USC
Jeff Mills, defensive coordinator, secondary, Youngstown State
Mike Cox, linebackers, assistant secondary, St. Louis Rams
Dennis Slutak, 32, director of football operations, USC
Nigel Burton, defensive coordinator, Nevada
Joel Thomas, 34, running backs, Purdue
Doug Nussmeier, offensive coordinator, Fresno State
Aaron Roderick, 36, wide receivers, Utah
Jimmy Dougherty, offensive coordinaaor, San Diego
Dan Cozzetto, tight ends, ASU

Washington's head coaching conundrum.

There are 26 head coaches listed in the table below, excluding Steve Sarkisian. The 2008 media guide lists 25 head coaches, excluding Tony Savage and Sarkisian. Savage, a head coach from Lincoln high school, filled in for Hunt in 1918 when Hunt was off fighting in WW I, according to the media guide.

Reggie Root coached one of the Odell years (1948) due to Odell’s illness, according to a fan who e-mailed me.

Sarkisian should be listed as the 27th head coach if you believe the table below (which counts Tony Savage) or the 26th head coach if you believe the media guide, which doesn't formally list Savage but, instead, credits him for his work in 1918.

Or the 23rd head coach if you believe the official UW release, “The University of Washington announced today that Steve Sarkisian has been named the 23rd head football coach in the sport's 119-year history at the institution.”

It is no wonder the UW football program is in such disarray.

Coach Years W/L/T P
No Coach 1889-1890 0 1 1 .250
William B. Goodwin  1892-1893 2 4 1 .357
C. "Papa" Cobb 1894 1 1 1 .500
Ralph Nichols 1895-1896, 1898 7 4 1 .625
Carl L. Clemans 1897 1 2 0 .333
A.S. Jeffs 1899 4 1 1 .750
J.S. Dodge 1900 1900 1 2 2 .400
Jack Wright 1901 3 3 0 .500
James Knight 1902-1904 15 4 1 .775
Oliver F. Cutts 1905 4 2 2 .625
Victor M. Place 1906-1907 8 5 6 .579
Gilmour "Gloomy Gil" Dobie 1908-1916 58 0 3 .975
Claude J. Hunt  1917, 1919 6 3 1 .650
Tony Savage 1918 1 1 0 .500
Leonard B. "Stub" Allison 1920 1 5 0 .167
Enoch "Baggy" Bagshaw 1921-1929 63 22 6 .750
James M. "Jimmy" Phelan 1930-1941 65 37 8 .627
W. Ralph "Pest" Welch 1942-1947 27 20 3 .570
Howard "Howie" Odell 1948-1952 23 25 2 .480
John "Cowboy Johnnie" Cherberg 1953-1955 10 18 2 .367
Darrell Royal 1956 5 5 0 .500
James "Jim" Owens 1957-1974 99 82 6 .545
Don James 1975-1992 151 59 2 .717
Jim Lambright 1993-1998 44 25 1 .636
Rick Neuheisel 1999-2002 33 16 0 .673
Keith Gilbertson 2003-2004 7 16 0 .304
Tyrone "Ty" Willingham 2005-2008 11 37 0 .229
Steve "Sark" Sarkisian 2009-current    


Richard Linde can be reached at malamute@4malamute.com

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