Heaps: Dickert has done ‘a great job’ at WSU, but shouldn’t be next HC
Of the many storylines surrounding this year’s Apple Cup clash between the UW Huskies and WSU Cougars, the status of each team’s head coach is arguably at the top.
Both UW and WSU are fielding interim head coaches in Bob Gregory and Jake Dickert, respectively, after Jimmy Lake and Nick Rolovich were let go from their respective programs during the season.
Both Gregory and Dickert entered the 2021 season as defensive coordinators and suddenly found themselves leading the two Pac-12 North schools.
Gregory and the UW Huskies have struggled this year as they enter Friday at 4-7 and will not be in a bowl game for the first time since 2009. The Huskies are 0-2 with Gregory as head coach.
The Cougars, meanwhile, enter the Apple Cup at 6-5 and with a shot at the Pac-12 North title if WSU wins and Oregon State beats Oregon. WSU is 2-2 under Dickert and he has been praised by many inside and outside of the program for the job he has done in recent weeks. Many believe that with a win over UW, which would be WSU’s first Apple Cup victory since 2012, Dickert may have the interim title taken off and he’ll be the next full-time head coach of the Cougars.
“The job that Jake Dickert has done, I think that he has really put himself on the map, but I don’t believe he’s a legitimate candidate,” Heaps said. “I think it’s a feel good story.”
Heaps thinks that despite Dickert leading the program during some tough times in 2021, he’s not the right guy for WSU as a long-term head coach.
“In terms of WSU and what they need to do moving forward, they’ve got to find legit stability,” Heaps said, referencing that Dickert has no prior head coaching experience. “They’ve got to find somebody that can really spark the program. That to me is what WSU needs, and I don’t think Dickert provides that.”
Heaps said Dickert is a “good solid coach” and has done an “absolutely commendable” job in his time as the interim head coach.
“But I don’t think that he is the guy that’s going to lead WSU to shake things up in the Pac-12 and give them the best opportunity in a down Pac-12 to potentially be a consistent winner in the North and in the Pac-12,” he said. “Although I love the job that Jake Dickert has done, I don’t think that he’s a legitimate candidate to assume the head coaching roles full time.”
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