UW Football | Huskies offer coordinator job to Donatell
The task of reviving a Washington defense that last season was statistically the worst in school history will apparently fall to Ed Donatell...
Seattle Times staff reporter
The task of reviving a Washington defense that last season was statistically the worst in school history will apparently fall to Ed Donatell.
Several sources told The Seattle Times on Friday that Donatell had been offered the job and was expected to take it, with an official announcement to come as soon as today.
Donatell was in Seattle meeting with Huskies coach Tyrone Willingham and other school officials.
The 50-year-old Donatell was the defensive coordinator for the NFL Atlanta Falcons from 2004 until being let go when Jim Mora was fired as coach after the 2006 season.
Donatell, who spent last season working with the New York Jets in an unspecified position, has been in the NFL since 1990. But he spent the previous decade working in the college ranks, including a stint in 1981-82 as a graduate assistant at Washington under Don James, working with the defense.
"He was a good young coach," James said. "He was one of those guys I thought definitely had a career in coaching and was going to make it. He was a hard worker and smart. I'm pleased he would have that opportunity."
Donatell's hiring would end a search that began Dec. 16 when Willingham fired Kent Baer, who was coordinator for a defense that allowed a school-record 446.8 yards per game and ranked last in the Pac-10 in yards allowed and last in rushing defense (184.5).
The Huskies initially offered the job to UCLA defensive coordinator DeWayne Walker, who decided to stay with the Bruins under new head coach Rick Neuheisel.
Donatell, a native of Akron, Ohio, has worked primarily as defensive-backs coach or defensive coordinator in his career.
He was the defensive coordinator for four years with the Green Bay Packers but was fired after the 2003 season when the Packers were defeated in the playoffs after the Philadelphia Eagles converted a fourth-and-26 play.
Some Packers players later spoke up for Donatell, including Brett Favre, who told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel in 2005: "He's a great guy. I think the players related to him really well. He was a players' coach and he was real energetic. I just have nothing but good things to say about him."
Season ticket prices unchanged
Washington announced Friday that football season ticket prices will remain unchanged for the 2008 season.
The athletic department is now sending out renewals to the more than 15,000 people who held 50,509 season tickets sold last season.
Scott Barnes, UW's senior associate athletic director, said in a statement that the school is thrilled "to reward the many loyal supporters who have been with us for a lot of years."
Todd Turner, who was fired as Washington athletic director last month, had raised the ire of many longtime fans with some aggressive price increases in recent seasons.
Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company
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