Huskies coach Chris Petersen said on Friday at Pac-12 media days that new consultant Jeff Tedford, the former California head coach, is “truly in it for being around us and helping us” and not angling for an assistant coaching position in the future.
In confirming Tedford’s role at UW, Petersen detailed that “he can’t coach any of the players. He can be in all of our meetings. He can look at tape. We can talk to him. We can have as many conversations in terms of all that type of stuff.”
Tedford, who worked as Oregon’s offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach from 1998-2001 -- Petersen was the Ducks’ receivers coach from 1995-2000 -- was the head coach at Cal from 2002-2012, compiling an overall record of 82-57 before being fired after posting a 3-9 record in the 2012 season. He most recently served as head coach of the BC Lions of the Canadian Football League.
Tedford wanted to join Washington’s staff as a consultant, Petersen said, because “he wanted to get back into college football. And there wasn’t an opportunity out there for him this year, making him a head coach or some other position like that. And he knows a lot of guys on our staff. And really, that’s what this thing’s all about, being around people that you want to be around. So both sides wanted to be around each other. He’s obviously a really good coach with a lot of knowledge and has done a lot of things, and so we feel real fortunate to get a guy like that to be able to be with us.”
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Would Petersen consider him for a full-time job if an opening arises in the future?
“We’re not even there,” Petersen said. “The great thing about him, I mean, he is not here at Washington to come here to get a job from us. He’d be the first to tell you that. He gets it. And he gets how a guy like that could come and, like, upset the apple cart in terms of what his role is and all that. And there’s a lot of coaches maybe with his stature out there that maybe you could get to come aboard if they didn’t have something going, and I wouldn’t do that with a lot of people, but I know what Jeff’s all about, and I know what his heart is, and he’s truly in it for being around us and helping us, and he’s not thinking about a job here at Washington right now. He’s just thinking about being part of our deal and his role.”
The fact that UW offensive coordinator Jonathan Smith was only given a 1-year contract extension this past offseason -- every other UW assistant received a two-year extension -- “has nothing to do with” Tedford’s presence at UW, Petersen said.
“We’re very lucky that this happened,” he said. “It just happened.”