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Subrookie
10-21-2013, 01:46 PM
Not sure how much interest this will get here, but Don James the Dawgfather and mentor to Gary Pinkel and Nick Saban died last night at the age of 80.

"Don James, one of the most beloved figures in the proud history of University of Washington football, died at approximately 11:20 a.m. Sunday surrounded by family at his Kirkland home.
James set the standard for success for the program as the Huskies’ coach from 1975 to 1992. He remains the Huskies’ winningest head coach in the program’s 128-year history, with a 153-57-2 overall record in 18 seasons.
James orchestrated the Huskies’ perfect season in 1991, culminating in a 34-14 victory over Michigan in the Rose Bowl that gave UW a 12-0 record and a share of the national championship with Miami."

Pinkel and Saban both played under him at Kent State, Pinkel later accepted a coaching job with him here at UW for many years through the 80's before James helped him get the HC job at Toledo. And, what he said below isn't lip service, he maintained a friendship with him long after they stopped coaching the same team.

Pinkel released a statement yesterday, "It’s hard to put into words how much it hurts to lose a man like Don James. He was my coach, my mentor, my friend, and he had such an amazing influence on my life, both personally and professionally. The program we built at Toledo and here at Missouri is Don James’ program, it’s a tribute to how he developed men and built football teams. This is a tough, tough day, and I’m so sorry for his wife, Carol, and the James family, as well as the entire Washington Huskies family. Coach James was a legend, and if I’m remembered for anything, I hope that it might be that I helped carry his legacy forward.”

Saban said, "Coach James was my mentor and probably did more than anybody to influence me in this profession. Like I've said before, I didn't plan on going into coaching. He saw something in me and asked me to stay on at Kent State as a graduate assistant after my playing career was over. I really enjoyed it, got hired full time and went on from there.

From an organizational standpoint, our program today is run much like he ran his program. He was very organized, efficient, and did an outstanding job of defining expectations for players, coaches and everyone in the organization.

He was always personal and inspirational to players and people around him. He wanted you to reach your full potential as a football player, but more importantly, he wanted you to do well in school and become the best person you could be so you would be successful in life. He was the same way when it came to assistant coaches or anyone who worked for him, you were a better person because of the time you spent with Coach James."

2008 National Champions
10-21-2013, 02:35 PM
He was a good coach, i remember that 91 huskies team, they were really good. Wish they could have played miami in the bowl game that year. RIP


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Heck Pup
10-21-2013, 03:35 PM
Saban said, "Coach James was my mentor and probably did more than anybody to influence me in this profession. Like I've said before, I didn't plan on going into coaching. He saw something in me and asked me to stay on at Kent State as a graduate assistant after my playing career was over. I really enjoyed it, got hired full time and went on from there.

I wonder if Don James felt the same way about Saban that Oppenheimer felt about building the A-Bomb?

Subrookie
10-21-2013, 04:08 PM
I wonder if Don James felt the same way about Saban that Oppenheimer felt about building the A-Bomb?

Or which coach he secretly referred to as Fat Man or Little Boy.

Heck Pup
10-21-2013, 04:19 PM
Or which coach he secretly referred to as Fat Man or Little Boy.

"Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds."

http://media.culturemap.com/crop/56/62/600x450/nick_saban_mad.jpg

Jimmy Reb
10-23-2013, 03:27 PM
Even though I loathe UW, I was very sorry to hear Coach James had passed away. He seemed like a really good guy, and used to travel over the Cascades to play golf here in Yakima. Truly a UW legend.