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The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

January 20, 2012 at 11:28 AM

Sarkisian on ESPN 710

Still thawing out here, but I was able to catch UW coach Steve Sarkisian on ESPN 710 this morning with Brock Huard. Sarkisian hasn’t done a general interview with the media since some of the recent hirings, so these were some of his first comments on some of what has happened of late. Here are some excerpts. …

— Sarkisian said the discussions with Tosh Lupoi went on for “well over two weeks” and that it “took longer than I would have liked but we were able to get Tosh on board.”

— Asked how he was able to get Lupoi to come to UW, Sarkisian said “I had to recruit the recruiter, in a sense. You have conversations to gauge interest and there was definite interest from Tosh. But his love of Cal and playing there and GA-ing there (being a graduate assistant) and coaching there, that was difficult for him to overcome. But through it all he saw what we have done here, the potential that is here, the rest of the staff, his ability to fit in with the staff and ultimately to grow as a coach. It’s great to be a great recruiter, but he has goals of being a coordinator and ultimately a head coach and I feel like he feels this is a necessary step to accomplish those things in his career.”

— He said it helped that Lupoi had a relationship with Justin Wilcox and that he is “aligned with the philosophy and scheme and mindset of Justin.”

— Asked what makes Lupoi a great recruiter he said “he’s got tremendous passion for (the job), he works at it, he’s confident and believes in himself and he does a tremendous job of building relationships with the young men and their parents. … It boils all down to his energy and his ability to do it day in and day out.”

— Asked how the new hires will make the defense look different to fans who would come to a practice, Sarkisian said “the first thing is they are going to see is excellent teachers and that’s important to me that we teach really well … the energy has to be there, too, to go alongside of that.” He also said he thinks the new coaches will be able to get the number of young players on UW’s defense to “take the next step, and by taking that step step they are going to grow by leaps and bounds to play faster and more aggressive.”

— He was asked about UW AD Scott Woodward’s role in what has transpired and that he has said in the past that he is the CEO of the organization. Asked if he’s the CEO and what that makes Woodward, he laughed and said “the owner.” He then said Woodward has “been tremendous” and that “we have a great relationship. We talk numerous times daily and he has been tremendous to this program and the effort and allowing us to do things we wanted to do.” He said Woodward “realizes the progress” that has been made but also saw that there was more to do to get to where UW wants to go and that “that’s why we made the decisions that we made. … Ultimately, I know we can be better and I think Scott recognizes that and that’s why we made some of the decisions we made.”

— He was also asked about the changing nature of recruiting and said “recruiting is crazy, quite honestly” largely in all the increased and faster methods of communication.
“The arena that we are playing in is a lot more volatile, there is a lot more going on, and you have to manage everything. It’s not just the one-on-one interaction with thee kid, but it’s all of it to make sure the kid feels great about the relationship with the universeity and isn’t getting caught up in everything going on around him.”

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