Steve Sarkisian continues to put together what appears to be a pretty impressive Texas football staff. For his latest hire, he is reportedly poaching one of his old programs, the Washington Huskies.
Sarkisian has already taken a few big coaches from Nick Saban’s Alabama staff, where he served as offensive coordinator over the last few seasons. Kyle Flood, Alabama’s offensive line coach, is heading to Texas to be offensive coordinator and OL coach, and Sark is also bringing over special teams coordinator Jeff Banks from the Crimson Tide.
Alabama Defensive coordinator Pete Golding was also reportedly on Sarkisian’s list, but it looks like Saban will have one less major assistant to replace. According to Bruce Feldman of FOX Sports and The Athletic, Sarkisian is instead hiring UW’s Pete Kwiatkowski. He confirms a report by Seattle radio host Dave Mahler.
Per ESPN’s SP+, Washington fielded the sport’s 19th most efficient defense this year. FPI was less bullish on the Huskies’ defense, ranking it 52nd. Of course, given how bizarre this season is, a four-game sample size probably isn’t a super-telling sample size in any direction.
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) January 19, 2021
Kwiatkowski comes from the Chris Petersen tree. The former Boise State defensive lineman has spent virtually his entire career in the Northwest.
After playing for the Broncos, he quickly joined the coaching staff, coaching at every level of the defense between 1988-96. After stints at Snow College, Eastern Washington, and Montana State, he returned to Boise State in 2006, and joined Petersen at Washington in 2014, where he’s served as defensive coordinator since. He’s led one of the Pac-12’s top defenses during that stint, and appears to be a pretty solid pickup for Steve Sarkisian.
Expectations will be high from the outset for Sarkisian, who takes over a Texas football program desperate to compete with Oklahoma in the Big 12 and contend for the College Football Playoff. So far, it looks like he’s done a nice job in surrounding himself with serious coaching talent.