In today’s newspaper, we took a closer look at Marques Tuiasosopo, UW’s head coach for another 12 days.
Regardless of what the future holds, Tuiasosopo said he was “thrilled” when UW athletic director Scott Woodward asked him to fill in as interim coach. However fleeting the task, it was the realization of a lifelong dream.
Growing up in Woodinville, he wanted two things: to play in the NFL – he did, for the Raiders and Jets – and to become a head football coach.
“I love the game, and it’s an opportunity to stay in the game and share my experience with them,” Tuiasosopo said after Saturday’s practice. “For some reason, that’s always been part of something I want to do.”
His focus, Manu says, has guided him since youth. He recalls one summer filled with baseballs and bats, Marques trying to perfect his swing, working and working and working until he felt he could properly pull the ball at will.
That’s not a particularly unique trait in his family. Manu was a star defensive lineman at UCLA before an eight-year NFL career with the Seahawks and 49ers. Leslie, the oldest of Manu’s five children, was a standout volleyball player at UW. Younger son Zach played football at UW before a brief NFL career. Younger son Matt is a Major League Baseball player. Younger sister Ashley played softball.
But what Marques had was a little different.
“All of our kids had that focus, but Marques has that special focus,” Manu said. “When he got his mind on something, he was hell bent on seeing it through the end.”
— Chris Petersen’s first recruiting class might be a difficult one to salvage.
— USC’s interim coach says he doesn’t worry about being a short-timer.
— Washington State will get to have some fun in Albuquerque during the week of New Mexico Bowl festivities.
— California got a commitment from a junior-college defensive tackle.
— UCLA will return to San Bernardino for training camp.
— Arizona State running back Marion Grice hopes to play in the Sun Devils’ bowl game.
— USC receiver Marqise Lee says he’ll make his NFL decision after USC’s bowl game.
Christian Caple can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @ChristianCaple