I haven't seen this take on CRN from Husky bloggers on Washington Husky Sports posted on BN yet.
It's revealing considering lot of the vitriol we have seen directed towards CRN from the Seattle MSM:11. What are your feelings concerning Rick Neuheisel's tenure at Washington?
On field I was very impressed. The last 5 years have brought a certain nostalgia for Lambo, a great Husky who led the program through tough times and never had a losing season, but when he was fired there were solid on field reasons and he was unable to finish the deal several times and his recruiting was going in the wrong direction. Now he looks like Vince Lombardi, but you have to look at things how they were then.
Rick brought an enthusiasm and a Rose Bowl win, something only three coaches in our history have done. We were in the hunt and got two Holiday Bowls to go along with that. That is very solid.His teams were trending downward and losing to Cal shocked us and having to close out strong to get that last bowl was hairy, but at least he could close strong. And he could win the 2nd half.
I don't know about all the evaluation stuff on recruiting but I do think our lack of development of players began under him. His defense was poor, but his hire of Snow was good, as Gilby found out.
I think he was on the hot seat for year 5 for legitimate on field stuff due to the standards that we still had at that time. We'll never know if he would have made it or been fired.
As for the off field stuff most of it was nothing more than a bunch of old women crying about a guy that was kicking their ass - yes that is you Bellotti and Barney. For some reason Rick's secondary violations were worse than Oregon's major violation for forging an LOI. Ms. Hedges let Colorado put their sins on us for secondary violations. Colorado was a cess pool before, during and after Rick.
He looked at other jobs and got raises. Okay. But he stayed. Ty left Stanford for ND and called UW while at ND. This is routine stuff. Rick wasn't slick, he always got in trouble for stuff that other coaches did all the time.
The off field stuff was magnified by an administration that over reacted as usual and did the incredibly stupid thing of firing him in June that killed our program and brought us to where we are. Rick was no angel and deserves his fair share of the blame. But we didn't need to kill the program to get rid of him. We could have waited until December and fired him then and got our next coach.
Just more evidence of an administration that has no clue or concept of what it takes, nor do they care to.The criticisms about lack of player development could be fair game. But I am one of those who believes CRN learned from his mistakes, and will use his experience to become a better coach in Westwood. Advantage UCLA.