By: Cole Mantell (@lightningdragon)
This season the writing staff for the CFSL were busy with the new AD profiles, writing a total of nine. This reflects the changes coming in Season 19, and it was a bunch of fun getting to know different guys around the CFSL a little more. This final one I’m writing is about a school with a special place in my heart.
The final game of Washington was one of the more unique ones in CFSL history. It was rivalry week, with the Huskies hosting the rival Oregon Ducks in Seattle. Washington entered the game 1-6, already out of the playoff picture. Oregon needed the win the secure a playoff spot. In the fog of the Pacific Northwest, one of the few games in CFSL history played in fog, Washington fought well throughout the contest, but would eventually fall 38-14. Oregon would head to the playoffs a week later.
The history of Washington football in the CFSL is rich. There are award winners, record holders, and so much more for a unique culture to represent through the locker room. However, after Season 15, that was the end of the Washington football in the CFSL for now. I moved over to coach the Auburn Tigers. Since then, Seattle has been waiting to resurrect the dormant program. In Season 19 they are back in the league with a new AD Michael Jones (@Jonesy).
“I live in Bellingham, Washington, and I was born and raised in the Pacific Northwest. I am a lifelong Huskies fan,” Jones said.
Jones has long been a respected coach in this league. Since Season 10 he has been a member of Clutch’s staff at Boise State. He has helped them become one of the more unique and successful teams in the CFSL. He has been the DC, the AHC, and the HC, all with one team. That is extremely rare for any coach and shows the kind of loyalty not only Jones had for the Broncos, but also that the Hall of Fame Boise State AD had for his coach.
That experience will be helpful and give Jones some advantages as he starts his program in the Pacific Northwest. He says of the area, “My experience growing up here is that people are hard-working and proud of where they are from.” That hard-working spirit is what I experienced coaching this team, and now Jonesy is ready to take this team and return it to contender status.
Washington will rejoin the B1G, the conference with arguably some of the most changes entering Season 19. For the Huskies, while they will get to face off with Oregon once more, they are not the only reentering West Coast team. USC joins as an expansion team, along with fellow B1G expansion team Penn State. Rival Oregon, along with Ohio State, also will have a change in AD. Thus, only two B1G teams enter Season 19 with the same AD as Season 18.
This will be a tough scene for the team to enter the CFSL. Illinois and Michigan both were playoff teams this season, and rival Oregon’s new Athletic Director just won the B1G with Oklahoma. Still, Jones seems more than up for the challenge. Not to mention his previous experience at Boise State, where tough B1G opponents were the norm over the past few seasons. Interestingly, Boise State is not a member of the B1G entering Season 19. However, it does seem likely a teacher versus student out-of-conference matchup awaits Jones and the Huskies next season. Stay tuned for that, as the Huskies make their triumphant return to the CFSL after a three-season absence.