January 10, 2008

If you don't do what I say, I'll take my football home!: Lawyer, multimillionaire, University of Washington alumnus, and former three-term Everett, Washington mayor, Ed Hansen wants his way. And if the University of Washington wants $200,000 for law school scholarships all they have to do is fire their football coach and athletic director. [more inside]

posted by scully to business and law at 02:27 PM - 17 comments

"By this letter I hereby pledge to contribute a minimum of $100,000 towards a law school scholarship within 90 days, conditioned upon the termination of Ty Willingham as football coach. ... In addition, I hereby pledge a second $100,000 towards a law school scholarship within 90 days, conditioned upon the termination of Todd Turner as athletic director. ... Also, I do not intend to contribute any further funds to the athletic department as long as these two gentlemen are employed by the University." Sincerely, Ed Hansen

posted by scully at 02:28 PM on January 10, 2008

Considering the money being thrown at coaches and the cost of the search, I wonder if this is even enough money to factor into a decision rather than just a nice bonus from an alum if/when UW decides to pull the plug on Willingham.

posted by bender at 02:40 PM on January 10, 2008

Personally, am not sure extortion is the answer no matter how much the cost of the search is. I think it sends the wrong message to the students... you know... the ones who are supposed to be served by the university. But that's just me. *shrug*

posted by scully at 03:02 PM on January 10, 2008

Maybe should Ty should just donate a matched amount, no strings attached.

posted by Uncle Toby at 03:44 PM on January 10, 2008

University of Washington Husky Class of '94 and Class of '01. My first Husky memory was a 27-20 win over the Wolverines in the Rose Bowl. 1978. Warren Moon and Jacque Robinson. Followed them all through the 80's and 90's as we put player after player in the NFL. The Rose Bowl seemed our birthright. You know at one time the Dawgs had 8 guys on NFL rosters at QB alone? (Moon, Pelleur, Conklin, Hobert, Brunnel, Millen, Huard, maybe a couple others). Tight ends, running backs, offensive and defensive linemen. Only Miami it seemed like produced more pros. I was a student when we won the split title with Steve Emtman and Napoleon Kaufman and then a couple years later a great Rose Bowl with Marques Tuiasosopo. But it came at a cost, the first scandal under Don James' watch set us back and then the second punch under Neuheisel put us on the canvas. Since then it's been ugly and uglier. I want wins, and I want them badly. I don't even really care if a few corners are cut to get us back to relevancy. I think the idea of football player as student is pretty much a canard anyway, so I'm not really concerned with recruiting guys that might not be academically up to UW standards. As long as they're good citizens and stay out of trouble. What I want from Ty (and I'm glad he's back for another year) is to keep the big picture sparkling clean, hide the dirty details, and win some fucking football games. I think when you have tremendous pride in your school and your team, it's like making sausage. Maybe you don't really want to see how it's being made. The Huskies have a great quarterback in Jake Locker. Not just great but with the potential to be the best Husky ever and who knows? Maybe one of the best Pac-10 QB's ever. Lots of local skill-position recruits want to go to the UW to play with Jake. The decision to keep Ty was the right one in my opinion. If he fails, then we can bring in Mora. But for now he should have the full support of all Husky fans. Incidentally I predict a backlash against this asshole who made his contribution contingent on Ty's firing.

posted by vito90 at 05:12 PM on January 10, 2008

This guy's managed to get national publicity for a chump change donation offer (relative to most big-announcement donations), and he'll never be asked to pony up. He gets his message out -- the coach and AD of my school suck rocks -- without spending a penny. Nice PR job.

posted by rcade at 05:35 PM on January 10, 2008

rcade: A nice PR job for the school or for Hansen? Hansen sounds like a prick to me. If you think any publicity is good publicity, then I guess you are right. But I assume the school doesn't want this sort of publicity. As Vito90 says above, UW has had its share of bad publicity. It doesn't need more. I have no horse in the race, but I like Ty because he seems like a good bloke and seems to run a clean program. Takes a while to turn a program around. I remember how long it took to turn the Maryland men's basketball program around after Len Bias' death, Lefty's coverups, and Wade's NCAA rule violations.

posted by scully at 05:53 PM on January 10, 2008

so I'm not really concerned with recruiting guys that might not be academically up to UW standards. By that, do you mean that they haven't yet learned to walk upright? That's just a joke, vito. I'm on the other side of the state. I just couldn't resist as your line was plumb for the picking. Besides, Wazzu only recently started checking to see if recruits could spell their names properly on their letter of intent. UW's football slumber has been a nice relief from all the past dominance I had to grow up with. I'm sure that as soon as Hansen's wishes are fulfilled, the university will have enough money to pay their new AD and football team. I mean coaching staff.

posted by THX-1138 at 07:18 PM on January 10, 2008

I love how this post is categorized.

posted by Bonkers at 07:55 PM on January 10, 2008

what is it that people dont like about ty willingham? he was outstanding at stanford, so notre dame hired him. then just as he was getting the irish back to prominance they fire him in favor of a coordinator from the nfl. i get that charlie was a great oc for new enland, but willingham had returned the irish to the spotlight. they made progress almost every year he was there. isnt there something to be said for "if it aint broke, dont fix it?" now in a badly under-rated conference he finished low, but is really just getting started with his team. why wont anyone give this guy a legitimate chance to show what he is capable of? i think it should be mandatory that if you hire a coach in college, he should have a minimum of 5 years to reach a reasonable goal, based on the quality of school. at usc, it might be a title, at say indiana, a bowl game. all im saying is i wish people would give the guy (and for that matter all coaches) a chance, instead of jumping to the imediate gradification of a new coach who will probably get the same treatment in 2 or 3 years, himself.

posted by elijahin at 10:01 PM on January 10, 2008

he was outstanding at stanford If you call 44-36-1 outstanding I guess. Notre Dame was practically forced to hire him by the media after the George O'Leary debacle. He wasn't there choice and they were no were near back to prominence after going 10-3, 5-7, 6-5 and recruting classes fell by a wide margin every year. That's not going to do it at Notre Dame.

posted by bigpimp311 at 10:52 PM on January 10, 2008

Tyrone may be an outstanding human being, but he falls short as a head coach (76-76-1 career record), which certainly wasn't going to get it in 'South Bend; as far as UW, besides vito's impassioned, but short, history of Husky football, I don't know much about it, but I'm guessing it's not going to work there, either. Still, Hansen seems like a Grade-A assclown. Take that 200K and stick it right up your ass, Yer Honor.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 05:01 AM on January 11, 2008

i do call 44-36-1 outstanding an academics/basketball school like stanford, where football barely qualifies as an afterthaught. it wasnt just the george oleary debacle, it was bob davie, the last three years under holtz, and the absolute mediocrity that had become notre-dame football. and by the way its not like ty's replacement in south bend is doing better. three years is not enough time to build a program. it just isnt. at dame, he inherited a team on the slide. at washington...what the hell did he inherit other than a team with integrity problems? ty willinghams only problem is that he accepts jobs where its a tough situation, with an athletic department that wont give him the time to correct the issues that led them to the situation in the first place.

posted by elijahin at 11:40 AM on January 11, 2008

i do call 44-36-1 outstanding an academics/basketball school like stanford, where football barely qualifies as an afterthaught. So, now you bust out the qualifiers? Funny, I didn't notice you mentioning any criteria before. I know nothing about your math skills, but very few people consider a head coach with a .550 winning percentage over 13 years to be "outstanding." As far as improvement at Notre Dame, he went from 10-3 to 5-6 to 6-7. So, that's a lack of improvement, followed by a one-game improvement, at a university where the academic demands are also very tough.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 03:45 PM on January 11, 2008

When was the business and law category added?

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 05:03 PM on January 11, 2008

When was the business and law category added? It was added around the middle of November 2007. My best guess would be November 19th.

posted by tommybiden at 05:13 PM on January 11, 2008

So, now you bust out the qualifiers? Funny, I didn't notice you mentioning any criteria before. oh, well then, lets not give any praise to coaches who get teams like indiana, whos last bowl game came during our presidents fathers administration, into a bowl game with seven wins. lets not give any credit to any coach who gets a bad team to mediocrity. look, i dont celebrate mediocrity, but i do see tallent, in any coach who can improve a bad situation, and in the case of willingham, he was putting together a good team at dame, and if you guys in seattle dont mess it up, i think he can do it there too. lets not forget that brady quinn was his recruit. if a coach does well in his first few years, credit goes to his predacessor, but if he does badly why does the blame not go there too? as far as qualifiers, you and i both know that anything and everything is relative. six wins in south bend is not good enough because of the history of notre dame. but at down the road in bloomington (indiana u, for the geographicly impared.) six wins resulted in a celebration on the field. einstein proved relativity using a train and two cameras. i could explain it if you like but if you dont believe in it anyway, i doubt that conclusive evidence is gonna convince you of anything.

posted by elijahin at 06:47 PM on January 11, 2008

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