Football Coaches and Player Bios
July 24, 2001
JOHN MACKOVIC, ARIZONA
(Career Record, 85-64-3, 13 years, Record at Arizona 0-0, First Year)
John Mackovic was named the 26th head coach in Arizona history, signifying a change in direction for a Wildcat program that finished 5-6 last season. Mackovic's ties to southern Arizona are strong, having served as offensive coordinator for four seasons at Arizona from 1973-76. In 32 years of coaching, he has held three college head coaches positions at Wake Forest, Illinois and Texas and one top NFL spot and served as offensive coordinator for three different Division I schools. Mackovic has produced results in every program he has led in his career. With an overall collegiate record of 85-64-3 in 13 seasons, he has led nine teams to winning records, culminating in eight bowl invitations.
DIRK KOETTER, ARIZONA STATE
(Career Record 25-10, 3 years, Record at Arizona State, 0-0, First Year)
Dirk Koetter takes his place as the 21st head football coach in Arizona State history. The two-time Big West Coach of the Year inherits a program that posted a 6-6 record last season. In just three seasons as the leader at Boise State, Koetter engineered a complete turnaround of the program as the Broncos won back-to-back Big West championships and posted a 25-10 record. He also helped Boise State to its first Division I-A bowl berth, with the Broncos picking up a victory over Louisville in the Humanitarian Bowl. Koetter arrived at Boise Sate after 13 seasons as an offensive coordinator at five different schools, including San Francisco State, University of Texas-El Paso, University of Missouri, Boston College and Oregon.
TOM HOLMOE, CALIFORNIA
(Career Record, 15-29, 4 years, Record at California, Same)
With four years under his belt in Berkeley, head coach Tom Holmoe and his staff now expect to see the results on the field. Cal's recruiting efforts have steadily improved, including three straight nationally ranked classes. All that remains are the marks in the victory column, and that figures to come this fall as the Bears return the bulk of a team that posted victories over UCLA and USC and kept three top 10 teams on the ropes in the fourth quarter. Holmoe is a former Brigham Young and San Francisco 49ers defensive standout.
MIKE BELLOTTI, OREGON
(Career Record, 72-47-2, 11 years, Record at Oregon, 49-22, 6 years)
Seventh-year coach Mike Bellotti looks to continue his winning ways, having led the Ducks to six winning seasons and five bowl games. With last season's 10-2 record and 7-1 conference mark, Oregon earned a share of the Pac-10 title, and established itself as the team with more wins over the past six season than any other school in the Conference. The past two seasons' Sun Bowl and Holiday Bowl victories also made Bellotti the school's only mentor to coach the Ducks to three post-season wins. In his first campaign in 1995, he guided Oregon to a Cotton Bowl appearance, the Ducks' second consecutive New Year's Day bowl. Before joining the Oregon staff in 1989, Bellotti was the head coach at Chico State.
DENNIS ERICKSON, OREGON STATE
(Career Record, 131-46-1, 14 years, Record at Oregon State, 18-6, 2 years)
Just two years into his Oregon State tenure, Dennis Erickson has breathed new life into the Beavers' program to the tune of two straight bowl berths and a No. 4 final ranking in 2000. Erickson led OSU to an 11-1 record last season, a Pacific-10 Conference co-championship and a 41-9 victory over Notre Dame in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl. It marked the Beavers' first ever 11-win season and first Conference title since 1964. For his efforts, Erickson was named National Coach of the Year by The Sporting News and garnered Pac-10 Coach of the Year honors. Erickson brought to Oregon State a 13-year record as a Division I collegiate head coach of 113-40-1, including national championships in 1989 and 1991 at Miami, and a winning percentage of .737. He also coached the Seattle Seahawks from 1995-98 and produced a record of 31-33-0 (.484).
TYRONE WILLINGHAM, STANFORD
(Career Record, 35-33-1, 6 years, Record at Stanford, Same)
Head coach Tyrone Willingham will try and turn around the Cardinal's 5-6 record from a year ago. The outlook for this season remains bright as four of Stanford's six losses last season were to bowl-bound teams. In six seasons on The Farm, Willingham has led Stanford to three bowl games, including the 1999 Pacific-10 Conference Championship and the school's first Rose Bowl appearance in 28 years. He was honored as the Pac-10 Coach of the Year for the second time in his tenure (1995), making him the first Stanford coach to be named conference Coach of the Year on two occasions. Before his current assignment, Willingham served as an assistant for 17 seasons. He was Stanford's running backs coach under Dennis Green from 1989-91 before moving with Green to the Minnesota Vikings, where he again coached running backs.
BOB TOLEDO, UCLA
(Career Record, 64-59 11 years, Record at UCLA, 35-23, 5 years)
Having guided UCLA to three bowl trips in the last four years, Bob Toledo enters his sixth season in Westwood with an experienced squad. Under his tutelage, the Bruins have won two Pac-10 titles and played in two New Year's Day Bowls, including the 1999 Rose Bowl. In 2000, the Bruins defeated two No. 3-ranked teams for the first time ever and earned a trip to the Sun Bowl. Prior to his arrival at UCLA in 1994, Toledo was the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Texas A&M for five seasons (1989-93). Previous to his time at College Station he was the offensive coordinator at Oregon from 1983-88 after serving as head coach at Pacific from 1979-82.
PETE CARROLL, USC
(NFL Record, 33-31, 4 years, Record at USC, 0-0, First Year)
New head football coach, Pete Carroll, will try and revive a USC football program that posted a 5-7 record last season. Carroll brings 26 years of NFL and college experience to Southern California. Most recently, Carroll served as head coach of the NFL's New England Patriots for three seasons (1997-99) and led the New York Jets for one season (1994). During his tenure at New England, the Patriots went to the NFL playoffs twice. Carroll began his coaching career at the college level, serving as a graduate assistant at his alma mater, Pacific, for three years (1974-76). He then spent a season each as an assistant in charge of the secondary at Arkansas (1977), Iowa State and Ohio State. He also coached at North Carolina and Pacific again before coaching at the NFL level.
RICK NEUHEISEL, WASHINGTON
(Career Record, 51-20, 6 years, Record at Washington, 18-6, 2 years)
In just his second year as head coach at Washington, Rick Neuheisel led the Huskies to an 11-1 record, a share of the Pac-10 Championship, a Rose Bowl victory and a No. 3 ranking in the final polls. Under his guidance, UW posted its first 10-win season since the 1991 team went 12-0 en route to the national championship. Although he returns just 12 starters from a year ago, Neuheisel looks to continue the winning foundation he has laid in Seattle. In his first season at Washington, Neuheisel accomplished something that none of his predecessors achieved, taking the team to a bowl game in his inaugural season. He guided the Huskies to a 7-5 record, including an invitation to the 1999 Holiday Bowl. Prior to coming to Washington, Neuheisel served as the head coach at Colorado where he compiled a 33-14 record and was 3-0 in postseason bowl games.
MIKE PRICE, WASHINGTON STATE
(Career Record, 109-117, 20 years, Record at Washington State, 63-73, 12 years)
Mike Price's Cougars are coming off a 4-7 season that could have been much better, were it not for three overtime losses in a four-game stretch. However, with 19 starters returning and 51 letterwinners back, he fields a veteran team ready to improve upon last season's record. Price and the Cougars are seeking to turn it around and back to the form of the 1997 Rose Bowl squad, following a couple of disappointing seasons. Price enters his 13th season at Washington State, making him the current 'dean' of Pac-10 coaches, after an eight-year stint at Weber State.
BRANDON NASH, SS, 6-1, 215, SR--ARIZONA
Should be one of the anchors of the secondary and his leadership will be a key element to the Wildcats' success in 2001...Was a First Team Pac-10 All-Academic selection...Recorded 40 tackles on the field last season, including seven for loss and three sacks...Also intercepted two passes, broke-up seven others, forced a fumble and notched his second career punt block.
SCOTT PETERS, OL, 6-3, 290, JR--ARIZONA STATE
Versatile offensive lineman who is one of the best centers in the Conference...Was a First Team All-Pac-10 pick last season...earned the Cecil Abono Co-Captain Award...A team leader who is well respected on the squad...Has started in 33 consecutive games.
SCOTT FUJITA, OLB, 6-5, 220, SR--CALIFORNIA
A very consistent linebacker for the Bears who started all 11 games in 2000...Had 41 tackles on the year, including four sacks and 13 behind the line of scrimmage...Earned honorable mention All-Pac-10 honors...Had at least one tackle for loss in each of the last six games of last season.
JOEY HARRINGTON, QB, 6-4, 220, SR--OREGON
The Conference's top returning quarterback...2001 Heisman Trophy candidate...Helped lead Oregon to a share of the 2000 Pac-10 championship and its first 10-win season ever...Led the league in passing (52%) and total offense (256.3 ypg) last season...A 2000 Second Team All-Pac-10 selection and First Team Pac-10 All-Academic pick...Placed 16th in the nation in total offense and 24th in pass completions...Set Pac-10 individual season highs in total offense (433 yards) and passing yards (434) in the Ducks' double-overtime win at Arizona State last year...Tied a school record with six touchdown passes over the Sun Devils.
KEN SIMONTON, TB, 5-8, 191, SR--OREGON STATE
Poised to become the Pac-10's premiere tailback...The first player in league history to rush for over 1,000 yards as a freshman, sophomore and junior...Currently ranks fifth on the Pac-10 career rushing list with 4,073 yards and ninth in career scoring with 312 points...Earned First Team All-Pac-10 honors in 2000...Led the Conference in rushing (134.0 ypg), all purpose (135.3 apg) and scoring (10.0 ppg)...Finished ninth in the Heisman Trophy ballotting...Rushed for at least 100 yards in eight of 12 games in 2000...Rushed for 234 yards and three touchdowns against USC.
TANK WILLIAMS, FS, 6-3, 215, SR--STANFORD
Was the Cardinal starter at free safety for all 11 games in 2000...Earned Second Team All-Pac-10 honors...Finished third on the team with 66 total tackles...Also had three tackles for loss, one quarterback sack, three interceptions and five pass break-ups...Established a new career best with 11 tackles to go along with an interception and pass break-up against California.
DeSHAUN FOSTER, TB, 6-1, 215, JR--UCLA
A First Team All-Pac-10 selection in 2000...Led the Bruins in rushing with 1,037 yards, rushing for at least 100 yards on four occasions...Led the team in touchdowns (13) and points (78)...His 1,000-yard season was the 15th in UCLA history and ranks 13th on the school's all-time single-season list...His 269 carries rank third on the single-season chart...Against Alabama he carried the football 42 times to tie the school record. He also rushed for a career-high 187 yards and three touchdowns.
ANTUAN SIMMONS, CB, 5-10, 190, SR--USC
Could be the comeback story of the Conference...Appears to have bounced back from a life-threatening illness in 2000 and will attempt to work his way back into the playing rotation in 2001...Missed 2000 spring practice while recovering from back surgery. He then had surgery in May to remove a benign abdominal tumor...Started for his third season at left cornerback as a junior in 1999...Was a 1999 Football News All-American honorable mention pick...In his three-year career, has blocked six kicks (4 field goals, 1 PAT and 1 punt) and intercepted seven passes.
LARRY TRIPPLETT, NT, 6-1, 300, SR--WASHINGTON
Dominating defensive lineman posted best numbers of career in 2000...A First Team All-Pac-10 pick last season...Named Second Team All-American by The Sporting News...Was a major disruption to opposing passing games, tallying six and a half sacks, the sixth highest total in the Pac-10...Broke into the backfield for 11 tackles for loss, for 68 total yards last season...Blocked three kicks on the season (2 FG, 1 XP)...Earned National Player of the Week and Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Week for his effort in UW's 17-14 win over Colorado.
DAVE MINNICH, RB, 6-0, 210, SR--WASHINGTON STATE
The Cougars' leading rusher last season with 754 yards on 165 carries...Averaged 4.6 yards per carry and scored four touchdowns...Also caught nine passes for 55 yards and made four tackles...Rushed for 100 or more yards four times, including a season high 118 and one score in a win over Utah.
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