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Updated: Kiesau joins Washington as offensive coordinator

Eric Kiesau

UPDATED 1/18 @ 12:00 p.m. ET: Washington has announced that former Cal receivers coach Eric Kiesau will be the team’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach.

Additionally, Steve Sarkisian announced some changes to titles among the completed coaching staff. Johnny Nansen will now serve as assistant head coach, recruiting coordinator and special teams coordinator. WR coach Jimmie Dougherty will also be the pass game coordinator and running backs coach Joel Thomas will be associate head coach of the offense as well.


Prediction: the entire Cal coaching staff is going to be wearing purple and gold before Washington’s done with this coaching raid. Yes, even Jeff Tedford.

Just one day after it was announced that Cal’s ace recruiter Tosh Lupoi had left the Bears to take the defensive line spot with the Huskies, Cal confirmed that it had lost another assistant coach to Washington.

Receivers coach Eric Kiesau will be replacing the open spot on the Huskies staff left by former offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier, who has reportedly agreed in principle to take the same position with Alabama. Cal’s statement does not say what role Kiesau will hold under Steve Sarkisian, but it’s expected to be an offensive coordinator spot.

Below is a statement from Tedford:

“Tosh and Eric have decided to take other jobs, and we wish them the best. When people have career opportunities they make decisions based upon a wide array of reasons that are important to them. We appreciate their contributions to Cal football, and we exhausted all of our resources to try to retain Tosh and Eric within the confines and continuity of our coaching staff, but both chose to take advantage of new opportunities. We will proceed to replace them with quality coaches who will continue to stand for what the University of California and our football program represent, just as Tosh and Eric did.”

No specific dollar amount has been confirmed in Kiesau’s hire, but it’s reported that he’ll be getting somewhere in the $700,000-$800,000 range annually.

Washington is shelling out for coaches. In a matter of weeks, Sarkisian has had one of the best hiring streaks in college football (outside of Arizona), grabbing Justin Wilcox (defensive coordinator) and Peter Sirmon (linebackers) from Tennessee, as well as Keith Heyward (secondary) from Oregon State.

The question now is whether some of those recruits who committed to Cal will join their coaches in Seattle. The Huskies are certainly building a coaching staff like they want Pac-12 North titles, now the athletes have to follow.

(Image courtesy of Cal athletics) 

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3 Responses to “Updated: Kiesau joins Washington as offensive coordinator”
  1. arizonapetdoctor says: Jan 18, 2012 1:19 PM

    Any idea why Washington didn’t promote at least some of their other offensive coaches (after the OC left for Alabama)? It seems like the offense had their act together against Baylor, the defense on the otherhand….

  2. Ben Kercheval says: Jan 18, 2012 1:29 PM


    Not sure, although some of the current assistants are getting new responsibilities. I would imagine there’s a pay increase with that.

  3. dprouse says: Jan 18, 2012 3:03 PM

    That’s a lot of money for a guy who won’t actually be the real offensive coordinator. Sark calls the plays and runs the show at Washington on offense – that’s why Nussmeier left for Alabama, where Saban as a defensive guy will let him actually run the offense.

    As for Tedford, he is facing life as a head coach on the hot seat – all your good staff start abandoning ship, knowing that they would all lose their jobs after one more bad year. Trying to replace them is brutal, as no one wants to give up any security they may currently have to join you. (Not a chance that Cal’s AD would give multi-year contracts to any assistants at this stage.)

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