Category Archives: Kasey Dunn

Hammel thrilled to be back in the Windy City; Dunn, Haas, Locker & more

In case you missed Jason Hammel’s press conference on Friday, the 2000 South Kitsap graduate is excited to be back with the Chicago Cubs.

The right-hander, who signed a two-year, $20 million deal, called his three months with the Cubs the best three months of his career.

Hammel will be reunited with Joe Maddon, his manager at Tampa, and Chris Bosio, the former Mariner who is the Cubs’ pitching coach.

Hammel was 4-1 with a 2.35 ERA at Wrigley Field last season before being traded to Oakland. Jon Lester, who was with Hammel in Oakland, will be a teammate in Chicago as well. Jake Arrieta had 10 wins and a 2.53 ERA.

“I can’t predict the future, but it’s going to be a very dominant rotation,” Hammel, 32, said. “And you win championships with pitching. Obviously, the offense helps. But all the teams that go (to the postseason), they all have dominant, consistent pitching.”


* Congratulations are in order for Lauren Haas, Olympic High grad who will be inducted into the Southern Illinois Hall of Fame in 2015. Haas, an infielder, was a four-year standout in fastpitch for the Salukis, and  the Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Year in 2008.

* Speaking of Hall of Fames, the 2015 Kitsap Sports Hall of Fame banquet will be held Jan. 24 at Kiana Lodge. Check out this link for a list of inductees. Tickets are $30 in advance; $35 at the door.

* North Kitsap grad Kasey Dunn joined the Oklahoma State coaching staff as receivers coach in February of 2011. Dunn and the Cowboys preparation for the Washington Huskies this week. OSU (6-6) and the UW (8-5) will play Jan. 2 in the Cactus Bowl in Tempe, Ariz. I talked to Dunn over the weekend. The well-traveled Dunn — he’s coached at nine colleges and had a two-year stint as running backs coach with the Seahawks — has been at OSU for four years, his second-longest tour of duty since getting into the business. He was at  Washington State for five years. The Huskies contacted him about a possible position when Rick Neuheisel took over from Keith Gilbertston, but the timing wasn’t right. Dunn  was happy at WSU, where Mike Price was the head coach.

* I always thought Jake Locker would have been an All-Pro safety if he’d played on the defensive side of the ball. He turned out to be a really good quarterback, but we’ll never know how good because of all the injuries he’s suffered. Locker dislocated his shoulder for the third time on Sunday, and his career with the Tennessee Titans is probably over.

* Jason Flora, senior form Bremerton, averages 13.0 points and 5.4 rebounds for the Seattle Redhawks (4-5), who play Northwest College on campus at Connolly Center Monday night. SU’s other home games are played at KeyArena.

* I won’t be surprised if Eastern Washington (8-2) wins the Big Sky Conference this year. I’m talking basketball, not football. The Eagles let one get away at No. 17 Washington on Sunday. They led the Huskies by 10 with 11:22 left but couldn’t hold on, losing 81-77. EWU’s not real deep, but they’ve got enough weapons to give anyone a tough time. Sophomore guard Travis Harvey (20.5 ppg) and Australian junior forward Jenky Vois (20.3 ppg) are for real. Harvey led the Big Sky in scoring a year ago. EWU beat Indiana in Bloomington earlier in the season. If the Eagles beat No. 19 California (9-1) in Berkeley on Dec. 19, they just might crack the top-25 polls.

* I still can’t get Robert Turbin’s 8-yard run out of my head. You know the one. It was 2nd-and-9 from the 12 and Turbo turned Beast Mode, running over the 49ers’ Antoine Bethea. Marshawn Lynch scored the go-ahead touchdown on the next play from the 4, and the Seahawks were in control.



Marvin still going hard for his college degree

Some Kitsap-centric linkage to check out on a Saturday morning:

Bremerton’s Marvin Williams is still on a mission to get his college degree in African-American Studies from North Carolina. He was only a Tar Heel for one year, but he returns to Chapel Hill every offseason to take a few more classes. He said his parents never pushed him to go back. He’s doing it for himself and for his college coach, Roy Williams, who gave him the opportunity to play in Chapel Hill.

According to this story, he even spends time working on his school assignments during the NBA season.

“If I was to be able to inspire kids to either play basketball or get an education I would take the education,” he said. “I feel like I’ve accomplished a few things in my life, I’ve made it to the NBA. But once I get my degree I feel like that will be my greatest accomplishment.”

FYI: You can catch Marvin and Hawks on TV Saturday when they play at Portland (CSN, 7 p.m.). Wonder if Marvin will still be in the league when Seattle gets a new franchise?

RV is still the guy to beat on the Supercross circuit. Poulsbo’s Ryan Villopoto is coming off a monster season in which he swept everything, and he’s back on top after six races heading into Saturday’s race at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. SPEED is televising it live at 5:30 p.m.

Kasey Dunn, the former North Kitsap/Idaho star and former Seahawks assistant had the pleasure of coaching Justin Blackmon at Oklahoma State this year. He’s considered the top wide receiver available in the draft. Dunn offers some insight into what makes Blackmon so good in this story.

Erynne Lee, the UCLA freshman from Central Kitsap, led the top-ranked Bruins women’s golf team to a second-place finish at the Arizona Wildcat Invitational  earlier this month. She was third overall. And Lee led the Bruins again the following week as UCLA won the Regional Challenge. She was third overall again in that tournament.

Wulff out at WSU, who’s going to be in?

Who is the flavor of the month?

A couple years ago, it was Kendall Turner Gill. The former Nebraska quarterback made a name for himself at Buffalo and was hired by the Kansas Jayhawks. Two years later, Gill’s gone, one of 14 college coaches that has been fired.

Washington State’s Paul Wulff became No. 14 on Tuesday when athletic director Bill Moos finally pulled the plug on the former Cougar lineman.

This list might be expanding as I’m typing this, but here’s the coaches who lost their jobs:

Ron Zook: Illinois

Neil Callaway: Alabama-Birmingham

Dennis Erickson: Arizona State

Rick Neuheisel: UCLA

Luke Fickell: Ohio State (Fickell was the interim guy who has been replaced by Urban Meyer)

Turner Gill: Kansas

Rob Ianello: Akron

Mike Locksley: New Mexico (Bob Davie has been hired as a replacement)

Larry Porter: Memphis

Mike Stoops: Arizona (Rich Rodriguez is already in place in Tucson)

Joe Paterno: Penn State

Howard Schnellenberger: Fla. International University

Houston Nutt: Mississippi

Will any of those out-of-work coaches became a candidate at WSU? I’d say it’s doubtful, although Gill is an intriguing possibility who probably deserved at least one more year at Kansas. How do you judge someone after two years?

There’s been a lot of talk about Mike Leach, the former Texas Tech coach, coming to Pullman, but it seems to be there’s better options out there for Leach. He’s already been linked to the Kansas job.

Here’s some other names to consider:

Houston’s Kevin Sumlin was a candidate the last time around when WSU hired Wulff. Sumlin might be the most sought-after guy out there after coaching Houston to a 12-0 record and possible BCS at-large bowl. It’ll take more money than WSU has historically been able to come up with to lure Sumlin, or someone like him, to Pullman.

Mike Bellotti. It’s probably a longshot but the former Oregon coach worked under Bill Moos, the current WSU AD. Bellotti was mentioned as a possible candidate at Arizona before the Wildcats hired Rodriguez, although Bellotti denied it. And his name is coming up again as a possible candiate for the Arizona State job.

Robb Akey. The former WSU defensive coordinator’s the head man at nearby Idaho. He’s a popular guy in the Palouse and the price would be right. But considering his 19-42 record in five years with the Vandals, it would be tough to consider him a serious contender.

The name of California offensive coordinator/offensive line coach and WSU alum Jim Michalczik, a former Port Angeles star, will certainly come up. Michalczik’s getting a lot of credit for getting the Bears’ power running game going again after returning to Cal following a stint with the Raiders. He was originally hired by Steve Sarkisian in 2008 to be Washington’s offensive coordinator/o-line coach, but never made it to Seattle and wound up in the NFL.

And it just might be the right time to throw Kasey Dunn’s hat in the ring. Dunn’s the former North Kitsap star who is now coaching at Oklahoma State. His paid his dues (I think he’s in his 17th season as a college assistant), including a stint at Washington State, where he coached five years (from 1998-2002), serving as the assistant head coach the last two under Mike Price. Dunn also spent a couple seasons working as the running backs coach under Mike Holmgren with the Seahawks.

Larry Fedora is a guy Dunn coached under at Southern Miss. The Golden Eagles are 10-2 this season and 32-19 overall in Fedora’s four years. Fedora, 48, was a former offensive coordinator at Oklahoma State and also coached at Florida.

Alabama offensive coordinator and QB coach Jim McElwain is another name to keep in mind. The former Eastern Washington quarterback from Missoula, Mont., coached nine years as an assistant at Eastern before moving to Montana State. His career was tied to John L. Smith, the former Idaho, Louisville and Michigan State coach, for a time. McElwain coached receivers at Louisville and Michigan State, and was later a successful offensive coordinator at Fresno State before spending a year in the NFL with the Raiders.