4 Possible Head Coaching Candidates At Washington

The Washington Huskies have an open head coaching job after firing Jimmy Lake. The firing of Lake followed an ugly incident at the end of a game against Oregon in which the Huskies lost. Lake shoved a player and came under fire for mistreating that player. That reality, plus Washington’s losing (the Huskies will not qualify for a bowl game this season) and his unprofessional public statements, created a larger context in which Lake could not survive. Lake also made the mistake of hiring John Donovan as his offensive coordinator. Washington’s offense crumbled under Donovan, magnifying the need for the Huskies to find not just a new coach, but a new approach to football. Lake did not deliver what the program needed. Now Washington needs something new. The question is: Will the Huskies actually go for something new, or will they return to their past? Here are four primary candidates for the Washington job: be

1 – Justin Wilcox

The Huskies know that Wilcox was formerly a defensive coordinator for the school. They also know that Wilcox used to work under former Washington head coach Chris Petersen when Petersen worked at Boise State University. Petersen is a consultant in this new coaching search, though the extent of his role is uncertain. There is a definite thought process which says that Wilcox could be the frontrunner, though it is much too early in the process to say. This would be viewed as the safe, conservative choice, which a lot of fans and analysts across the country would view as a relatively boring and disappointing hire. Wilcox is a good defensive coordinator, but he has not transformed the California Golden Bears and has largely struggled to find the right fit on offense. His Cal teams have not been very potent, and they have not been able to make inroads in the Pac-12 North Division, which is still led by Oregon and is witnessing the rise of Oregon State and Washington State.

2 – Billy Napier

The word on Napier, the head coach of the Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns, is that he is biding his time and waiting for an SEC job to take. That could be LSU, that could be Florida. Yet, Napier formerly was an assistant coach at Colorado State and Arizona State, so he has familiarity coaching in the West. The idea that he could come to Seattle to coach the Huskies is not crazy. It is not probable by any stretch, but it is within the realm of possibility and should be taken seriously.

3 – Kalen DeBoer

The head coach of Fresno State works with quarterback Jake Haener. The Bulldogs’ offense has been productive with Haener, who was formerly a quarterback for the Washington Huskies. The fact that DeBoer has done a good job with a former Washington recruit and has created a potent passing offense makes him an attractive candidate for the Huskies. He obviously knows the recruiting ins and outs of the West Coast, particularly California, from his work in Fresno. He has plenty of positive qualities.

4 – Jeff Hafley The Boston College head coach is an elite recruiter, having been an assistant coach at Ohio State before taking the head coaching job in Chestnut Hill with the Eagles. He is a dark-horse candidate, but he is favorably viewed in the coaching industry and has a very good chance of working his way up the coaching ladder. Going from Boston College to Washington would b


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