Coach's Corner

After hearing about the hiring of JD Williams as the new secondary coach at Washington, I was absolutely thrilled. It's hard to imagine a better fit. Here is a man with an NFL background as a player and an impressive resume as a college coach electing to leave another Pac-10 staff to join up with Tyrone Willingham. This is almost too good.

JD Williams obviously has a great admiration for the head coach and certainly has an understanding of the conference and its recruiting base in the western part of the county. He knows the league. He knows football and he knows all about the Huskies.

The fact that his younger brother was Curtis Williams' already makes him part of the Husky family, and I'm sure figured into his decision process.

Curtis Williams was a special kid to me. The two of us had a very unique relationship. Although I wasn't his position coach, I was really involved in his recruitment and then served as his counselor, advisor, and confidante. He was my friend simply because he knew I cared about him when he was struggling with his schooling, his marriage, and his football. I will always have a special feeling about his time as a Husky even though the tragedy of his death will always haunt the program.

For his brother to choose to come to Washington is special to me, and what is so important here. He is becoming a Husky coach because he wants to be here. To leave the successful California Bear football program and to move to another Pac-10 school says a lot about his desire to join the Huskies. I am sure it didn't set well with Coach Tedford but I admire his willingness to allow Coach Willingham to approach JD in the first place.

This hire makes a statement about the stability of the program and about the character of the man coming into it.

To leave a school that has been really good for a school that has been struggling over the past 4 years also takes a lot of guts. He obviously has a lot of respect and belief in what Coach Willingham stands for. He knows the man and he knows the school, and could be a perfect fit for the defensive staff already in place.

I appreciate the importance of staff continuity at the collegiate level, which means keeping the same core group of coaches intact. It allows for the kids to know what to expect and to have consistent role models throughout their careers.

You can never fault a coach for grabbing the opportunity of working at the highest level of the game, but I love sports education and that is the difference between college and pros. At the college level you are still developing and teaching the student-athletes in all phases of their life.

At the professional level you only can care in their development as players.

It is pleasing to see a man like JD who has had opportunities at that level to choose to stay and work with kids. In my book, this may be the finest hire since the hiring of Tyrone Willingham. To get someone who is familiar with the traditions of Husky football, someone who is familiar with the offenses of this conference, and who is familiar with the recruiting network is almost too good to be true.

It further supports my contention that things are definitely going in the right direction in Husky Football.

This hire has made ripples throughout this conference. I know there are a lot of people who must be questioning his reasons for leaving, but the bottom line is that he is coming to Washington because he wants to be here.

He will inherit a secondary that has experience, and while it got torched some last year, should be much improved. They have all their starters back and have added two JC prospects that should give them added depth. The cupboard was not entirely bare and the potential is still untapped.

Welcome on board, Coach Williams! This is just another part of the rebuilding process that Coach Willingham is undertaking. I can't wait for spring practices to begin so I can watch JD in action.

I am really delighted for the program, the defense, and especially for the kids who will get to play for this fine coach. It is special that an extended member of the family has chosen to join the staff. There has to be some deep emotions involved here and I'm sure Curtis is smiling up there and pleased to see there will be more of his legacy ingrained into Husky Stadium than the number 25 painted on the sidelines. Top Stories