Power ratings: At the dawn of the Jimmy Lake era, one question looms above all others: Who’s running the offense?

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The news conference this morning at UW will be dominated by the Ws.

Two are obvious, the headliners:

Why is Chris Petersen stepping down?

When did he make the decision?

But for Huskies fans — and for the dawn of the Lake on the lake era — the two other Ws are vital:

Who will run the offense?

What is the salary pool for assistant coaches?

Because priority No. 1, 2 and 3 for the program in its post-Chris Petersen phase is the offense.

It would have been an issue regardless: The Huskies underperformed this fall, as we addressed in a column published Monday before the Petersen news broke.

But at least Petersen’s background is offense; the Huskies ran his offense.

Now the leader of the program in a 42-year-old, first-time head coach whose background — both playing and coaching — is defense.

It’s an impressive background, mind you:

Lake and co-defensive coordinator Pete Kwiatkowski repeatedly have shown the ability to develop defensive talent.

But Lake isn’t an offensive strategist. He isn’t trained to identify, train and coach quarterbacks.

Which is fine, as long as he puts someone in charge who has expertise in those areas.

The most important hires for any new head coach are 1) the strength coach and 2) the coordinator on the side of the ball opposite the coach’s background.

For a rookie head coach steeped in defense, an offensive coordinator might be No. 1.

Lake needs the smartest, most creative, most experienced playcaller/quarterback mentor available whose style fits within the broad philosophy UW plans to deploy.

Lake needs a Jeff Tedford but not the Jeff Tedford.

He needs a Steve Sarkisian …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Sports


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