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Making sense of Steve Sarkisian’s record at Washington

Steve Sarkisian, Jay Inslee AP

There are a two ways to look at Steve Sarkisian’s five years at Washington, which came to an end Monday.

On one hand, he only one eight games once. After going 5-7 his first year, Sarkisian guided Washington to three straight seven-win seasons before this year’s eight-win campaign.

To say the least, USC isn’t hiring him to win seven or eight games a season. Sarkisian never beat Oregon, and while 2012’s win over Stanford stands as his signature win it was his only triumph over the new powers of the Pac-12. In five years, Sarkisian never won more than five Pac-12 games.

But on the other hand, Sarkisian took over a less-than-ideal situation. Washington went 0-12 under Ty Willingham the year before Sarkisian took over and hadn’t been to a bowl game in seven years. There wasn’t much strength to the program a decade and a half after Don James left his post.

With that in mind, perhaps winning seven or eight games and making a bowl game each year was a pretty good accomplishment. Or maybe it’s a sign that he’s nothing more than a mediocre-at-best coach. The record speaks for itself, it just depends on how many qualifiers you’re willing to accept.

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17 Responses to “Making sense of Steve Sarkisian’s record at Washington”
  1. praetorian12 says: Dec 2, 2013 3:10 PM

    The fact that both Sarkisian and defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox are leaving is devastating to Washington. Sark may or may not work out at USC, but hard to see Washington recover quickly from losing both Sark and Wilcox.

  2. 8to80texansblog says: Dec 2, 2013 3:45 PM

    I think Sark has done a decent job at UW…. To be honest, it’s going to be VERY hard to compete at a UW type of school while Oregon and Stanford in their prime right now.

    USC is a much easier road to the PAC12 title game. Essentially you have to beat UCLA… sure ASU comes up from time to time, but at USC he should be able to outrecruit anyone in the PAC12S.

    That said…. I’m not a huge fan of this hire. I just think USC needs to separate from the Carroll coaching tree and move on.

  3. farvite says: Dec 2, 2013 3:54 PM

    Bummer for UW

    Sark was no DJ. But he could recruit, he could beat SC and certainly did his part to rebuild the mess after Newweasel and Willingham.

    I like the hire for SC. But if they are as prestigious as they think they are, they really settled here. Sark is not an A-level candidate by any stretch.

  4. halbert53 says: Dec 2, 2013 3:58 PM

    Building UW in many ways is similar to trying to build Miss State into a consistent Top 20 program while in the SEC West. Difficult to do and even harder to sustain. Not a big fan of this hire.

    It’s up to Sark to make Orgeron want to stay. I wouldn’t but Orgeron loves USC. Would be hilarious if UW hires Orgeron.

  5. gatorprof says: Dec 2, 2013 4:40 PM

    Sark did a nice job at UW and took an upgrade. This is what coaches do.

    The real question is whether or not this was the best move for USC.

  6. sparty0n says: Dec 2, 2013 4:54 PM

    Is does Washington now hire Ed Orgeron?

  7. sparty0n says: Dec 2, 2013 4:55 PM

    OK, home sick in bed… Let’s try that again…

    SO does Washington now hire Ed Orgeron?

  8. thekatman says: Dec 2, 2013 5:30 PM

    UCLA hires Ed Orgeron after Jo Mora bolts for the U-dub job. lol

  9. thekatman says: Dec 2, 2013 5:30 PM

    Jim Mora.

  10. kurtrundell says: Dec 2, 2013 5:42 PM

    He only “one” eight games once. WTF, man, are you in middle school?

  11. cometkazie says: Dec 2, 2013 6:38 PM

    Beats the heck out of me, too . . .

  12. lbijake says: Dec 2, 2013 6:39 PM

    Great hire for Washington would be Coach O. Fantastic if it happens

  13. ruggyup says: Dec 2, 2013 7:12 PM

    Is the “one” commentor in middle school? Rude question but, they do say he was bored by the teacher in 6th grade, fell asleep and never woke up.

  14. sportsguy3434 says: Dec 2, 2013 7:45 PM

    I think that the UW comparison would be fair. Could someone explain to me why Mora would go to UW? I know UCLA is tough but it seems like a better gig than UW.

  15. pdcooper08 says: Dec 2, 2013 8:31 PM

    I’ve been told J Mora went to Udub and wasa GA their as well. He once made the statement that Ubub was his dream job. I can’t see this happening at this time with everything he has going at ucla. Maybe next time around.

  16. ratsfoiledagain says: Dec 3, 2013 12:38 AM

    sportsguy3434 says:
    Dec 2, 2013 7:45 PM
    I think that the UW comparison would be fair. Could someone explain to me why Mora would go to UW? I know UCLA is tough but it seems like a better gig than UW.
    Mora went to UW under Don James. He’s stated that he’d love to have this job while he was with Atlanta.

    Rumor has it that while with the Seahawks he could have a had the job, but he was appointed the HC job with Seattle. It was just a weird timing issue with Seattle, and Sark with Washington.

    If he wants the UW job, this might be his only shot at it. That is if UW’s AD will contact him. He’d be silly if he didn’t inquire.

  17. txnative61 says: Dec 3, 2013 1:52 AM

    We’re talking an exemplary coaching and recruiting job to reach 8-4 after the winless team he inherited. But coaching the 5-star prima donna’s on USC’s roster with sky high expectations is a whole different challenge. Now the challenge for UDUB’s next coach will be to continue building and attract a few top recruits. With the new Husky stadium and some deep pockets in the area, this could push them back into championship and recruiting relevance with the right hire.

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