Garfield High photo

Coach Ed Haskins of Seattle powerhouse Garfield High believed strong contender for Kent's WSU hoops staff

THE BUZZ coming from multiple corners of the Seattle basketball scene is that highly respected Garfield High head coach and athletic director Ed Haskins is a strong contender to fill one of the two open assistant coaching positions on Ernie Kent’s staff at Washington State.

As head coach at Garfield since 2008 and as an assistant at Rainier Beach and Franklin high schools previously, Haskins has mentored some of the great talent to come out of the state over the last two decades. The list includes the likes of Jamal Crawford, Terrance Williams, Nate Robinson and Tony Wroten.

Garfield has won two state titles under Haskins and he was part of another three state championships at Rainier Beach.

Haskins is no stranger to Washington State University.

He attended WSU in 1992-93 and practiced some with Kelvin Sampson's Cougars. And his older brother, the late Aaron Haskins, was a Cougar mainstay under George Raveling, playing on two of the finest teams in WSU history, in 1979-80 and 1982-83. Aaron later worked at WSU, helping recruit students of color to campus in the mid 80s and then assisting President Sam Smith with the creation of the Minority Affairs Office in the early 90s.

Ed Haskins, 44, is a graduate of Eastern Washington University and Clover Park High near Tacoma.

If Haskins were to join the staff at WSU, he would give the Cougars unique entree to a talent-rich community that has largely eluded WSU over the decades.

ONE OF HASKINS' STARS ON this season's Class 3A state runner-up Garfield team, 4-star shooting guard Daejon Davis, was granted his release from a Washington letter of intent after Lorenzo Romar was fired and is now believed to be leaning toward Stanford. rates him the No. 44 overall prep prospect in the nation in this recruiting cycle. Another standout GHS guard this season, 4-star Jaylen Nowell, also signed with Washington under Romar but has not publicly stated if he will seek a release following the Huskies' coaching change. rates him the No. 82 overall prospect in the nation.

A year ago, Haskins was asked by the Northwest Facts newspaper why he got into coaching:

“It has and will always be about helping kids find their way. I was blessed to have role models before me and coaching seemed like the best way to continue to give back … There will always be ups and downs but at the end of the day the ability to have a positive impact on the lives of our youth is whats it’s all about.”

Haskins is known in Seattle basketball circles as a teacher with a heady approach to Xs and Os and love of high-pressure defense. He also is known as a mentor to his players. In a 2008 interview with the Seattle P-I about coaching in the inner city, he said: 

"The one thing I realize as a coach is I can't change the city by myself. But I can affect the 36 boys I deal with every day. Our guys aren't angels at all, but they're good kids who, if they make a couple of right decisions, could be on the right path of the rest of their lives ... I feel like this is my assignment to be a stable voice and a stable man in the lives of the kids I coach. That's my job."

Kent is attending the Final Four in Phoenix this weekend and no doubt is one of the most popular people there given the convergence of coaches from across the nation and the fact he has two Power 5 conference assistant positions to fill with the exits of Greg Graham and Silvey Dominguez.

Related story: Who will Kent bring onto his staff?

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