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Originally published Thursday, July 22, 2010 at 7:59 PM

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Chuck Nelson out, Damon Huard in for Washington football broadcasts

In yet another piece of the continuing makeover of the Washington athletic department the last few years, the school announced Thursday...

Seattle Times staff reporter

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In yet another piece of the continuing makeover of the Washington athletic department the last few years, the school announced Thursday that Damon Huard will replace Chuck Nelson as the color analyst for Huskies football broadcasts.

Nelson, an All-American kicker during a Huskies career that ended in 1982, had been paired in the booth the last 17 years with play-by-play man Bob Rondeau. Huard, who played quarterback at Washington in 1991-95, recently ended a 14-year NFL career. In May he took a job as a fundraiser in the UW athletic department.

Andre Riley, a former Huskies receiver who is the assistant vice president of Washington/ISP sports, which handles the school's broadcast rights, said Huard's position in the athletic department had no role in the change. Instead, Riley simply wanted to "freshen up" the broadcasts.

"It wasn't broken," he said of the broadcast. "It was great. But I just thought that Damon, spending 14 years in the NFL from a quarterback's perspective, was just fresh. And knowing the college game and knowing the program would kind of give us a little bit more energy and in-depth conversation with Bob.

"It would be something that is fresh and something that is new, and I just kind of felt we needed that."

Nelson, who had broadcast every UW game since 1994, said he was caught off-guard when told of the change last week.

"There had been no indication that there had been any dissatisfaction with the product or with my role," said Nelson, who said he would pursue other broadcasting opportunities.

"It was news to me that there was any sort of looking for anything different than what we had been putting on the air successfully for 17 years."

Elise Woodward will remain as the sideline reporter.

KJR-AM 950 remains the flagship station for Washington sports.

Bob Condotta: 206-515-5699 or bcondotta@seattletimes.com

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