Washington State University announced on Dec. 1 that it had hired Mike Leach as its new football coach. Leach last coached two years ago at Texas Tech University. Leach coached 10 years at Texas Tech (2000-2009) and every one of his teams went to a bowl game. He is best known as the architect of high-powered, pass-oriented offenses. His teams at Texas Tech regularly led the nation in passing offense.
Leach had a messy departure from Lubbock, Texas, and wound up filing a still-pending lawsuit. He also is known as an eccentric figure in coaching circles. He has a law degree and has a long-standing fascination with pirates. These things made him a radioactive figure among some in the college football community.
Leach has worked for the past two years in TV and satellite radio sports broadcasting and wrote an autobiography, “Swing Your Sword: Leading the Charge in Football and Life.” He has proven he can win at places not considered to be elite schools in college football. He is sought out for advice on the passing game. Washington State Athletic Director Bill Moos said that he and Leach discussed his “baggage” and that he was satisfied that Leach is a strong leader who can return the Cougars to heights they haven’t reached in a number of years.
Leach will be paid a base salary of $2.25 million per year, far more that Washington State has ever paid a head coach in football or basketball. His presence and leadership abilities are considered key as the Cougars are currently trying to raise some $140 million for renovations to their stadium and for a new football facility.
Leach is a graduate (master’s degree) of the United States Sports Academy and has credited his studies at the Academy with giving him management tools that he continues to use today in his coaching career. The Academy wishes Coach Leach nothing but success in his new venture.
To learn more about courses of study such as the one followed by Mike Leach go the Academy’s website at http://ussa.edu.