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#pounditFriday, January 21, 2022

Jimmy Lake fired by Washington 1 week after incident

Jimmy Lake on the field

Jimmy Lake was fired by Washington on Sunday, a week after an incident where he got physical with a player on the sidelines.

Lake was seen pushing one of his players on the sidelines during a 26-16 loss to Oregon. Washington later suspended Lake one game over the incident. The suspension took place on Saturday, and Lake was fired on Sunday. He never coached Washington again after the Oregon loss.

Lake did a few things that game to embarrass the program, beyond pushing his player. He inexplicably punted late in the game. He was also trolled over a recruiting comment he made earlier in the week.

Lake’s firing was likely 90 percent due to performance. The other 10 percent likely stemmed from the incident and the recruiting comments, which brought embarrassment to the school.

Lake was hired as head coach in Dec. 2019 after Chris Petersen stepped down. The Huskies went 3-1 in the COVID-shortened season last year under Lake. They were 4-6 this season (4-5 in games he coached). Lake was a defensive coordinator under Petersen, and the Huskies’ defense under him was good. But the offense was pathetic and a huge problem this season.

Still, the firing overall reflects poorly on Washington. They hired Lake and never gave him a shot. He got four games in an awkward, shortened season last year, and only nine games this season. They fired him before he ever completed a full season. They knew he was a defensive coach but didn’t even give him one offseason to try and improve the offense with new assistants and players. And if him being physical with a player was the issue, then the school looks even worse. Why? Because Lake was accused of being physical with a player in 2019. Lake was a defensive coordinator at the time. That means Washington promoted Lake to head coach despite that 2019 incident.

Washington either didn’t do its due diligence before promoting Lake, or they didn’t find his physical approach with players to be an issue until it happened on national TV.

Either way, the whole thing makes Washington look really bad for not even giving him one full season.

Photo: Oct 16, 2021; Seattle, Washington, USA; Washington Huskies head coach Jimmy Lake watches pregame warmups against the UCLA Bruins at Alaska Airlines Field at Husky Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

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