Top 13 of 2013 - #5: Scott Woodward

Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

In 2008 Washington brought in a guy from down south to right the ship in the Athletic Department, and now that he's got his things in place things are starting to look prettay good.

Scott Woodward saw the fruits of a lot of labor and patience pay off in 2013. In his early days on the job he had a lot of work to do to get Washington's breadwinning sport back to where it needs to be.

Pushing ahead with the renovation of Husky Stadium after the state gave UW's athletic department the finger, doing so at cost, and having it be such a rousing success is a gigantic feather in Woodward's cap. The baseball program is also opening the 2014 season with a gorgeous new home for their games as well.

The facilities accomplishments are all well and good, but at a football school such as Washington, an athletic director will always live or die by the hires he makes to coach on the gridiron. And it's hard to criticize what Woodward has done in that department.

Bringing in Steve Sarkisian may not have been the best possible move that UW could have made with that hire. Could someone else have done better? Maybe. But someone else could have definitely done much worse, and Sarkisian brought the program back to respectability with annual bowl games once again the expectation and a roster that is ready to compete with the upper echelon of the conference going forward.

The hiring of Steve Sarkisian brought the profile of Husky football back up to where it needed to be so that when he left, Mr. Woodward could go out and get arguably the most sought-after coach in the country in Chris Petersen.

Many were quick to jump on Woodward after a few days of the coaching search, claiming that he was in the process of botching it. Now we know that couldn't be further from the truth.

In retrospect, with the way things have turned out after Scott Woodward's first six years, it's hard to criticize many of his moves guiding the football program. Perhaps his biggest gaffe was publicly criticizing Oregon's academics. I think we'll forgive him that one.

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