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The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

December 26, 2012 at 10:14 AM

Dougherty talks about his departure

Like every coach at every level of football, Jimmie Dougherty has some goals he wants to achieve.

One was to become a coordinator at the Division-I level.

Dougherty will get that chance after being named this week to become the new offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at San Jose State University.

There, he will also be reunited with new SJSU head coach Ron Caragher. Dougherty worked as an assistant for two years under Caragher at the University of San Diego in 2007 and 2008, the second year as offensive coordinator, before coming to Washington in 2009.

Dougherty said he wasn’t looking to leave UW, but that the chance to be reunited with a coach he knows and be a coordinator led to his decision to take the San Jose State job.

“It just really came down to the fact  that I knew I could go and coordinate and offense and call plays and do that,” he said. “And that’s really the bottom  line is being able to run my own show, along with the fact that I get to coach quarterbacks again.”

Dougherty was under contract at UW through 2013, due to make $205,000 in 2013 under terms of a deal that was re-worked last year, when the school essentially re-did the contracts for all the existing coaches.

Dougherty said his time at Washington was “a lot of fun” and that “this wasn’t an easy decision at all” but one he felt was a good career move. He said it “happened really fast” as he got a call from Caragher shortly after Caragher was hired on Dec. 17. He said he took about a week to think  about  it before making the decision to leave UW.

He is the second assistant to leave UW since the season ended on Saturday with a loss to Boise State in the MAACO Bowl Las Vegas. Running backs coach Joel Thomas is leaving for a similar position at Arkansas.

Thomas, by the way, spoke to Arkansas reporters a couple of days ago about his decision — you can read that here. And as you can read, Thomas also left to join a coach he has worked with previously.

The twin departures may allow for UW to restructure its offensive coaching staff. The remaining offensive assistants are offensive line coach Dan Cozzetto and offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Eric Kiesau. Kiesau, however, also  has extensive experience coaching receivers so head coach Steve Sarkisian could shuffle some responsibilities as he fills the two new vacancies on his coaching staff.

Thomas and Dougherty were each part of Sarkisian’s initial 2009 staff (once it all got settled down, anyway). And that means there are just two coaches left who were part of the 2009 staff — Cozzetto and special teams coach Johnny Nansen.

All of the other existing coaches remain on contract through at least 2013 — here are details.

Sarkisian is undoubtedly beginning the process already of filling the two vacancies. However, it could be a little while before replacements are named, especially if he is looking at coaches who are with teams in bowls. He may want to wait until after the bowl season to get a clearer idea of who is available. Also, the NFL season ends this weekend and with the usual assortment of changes in that league, there could be lots of NFL assistants who suddenly need jobs, as well. Also, it’s worth remembering that recruiting is pretty limited from now through Jan. 10 — here’s the calender.

One possibility as WR coach could be former Husky Jerome Pathon, who worked at UW under Sarkisian and Dougherty in 2009 while finishing his graduate degree and then heading to USD and then to South Florida.  Pathon was not retained at South Florida when Willie Taggart took over.

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