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Washington Hires Derham Cato as Tight Ends Coach

Coach Lake promotes from within to fill the last coaching vacancy

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 29 Washington State at Washington Photo by Jeff Halstead/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Washington announced this morning that they have hired Derham Cato to fill the role of Tight Ends coach.

Cato has spent the last 4 years as an offensive analyst at Washington so Jimmy Lake chose to promote from within to fill the position. The job of tight ends coach opened when Lake decided not to renew Jordan Paopao’s contract.

Before coming to Seattle, Cato began his coaching career as the tight ends coach at Dartmouth where he played his college football as well. Cato then served as a graduate assistant at Vanderbilt where he overlapped with new Washington offensive coordinator John Donovan. Finally, Cato was the offensive line coach and tight ends coach at Davidson before being promoted to offensive coordinator there in 2015. Davidson went 2-9 in that year which was actually an improvement over a winless season in 2014. Ironically, the offensive coordinator of that 2014 0-11 Davidson team? Bush Hamdan.

Washington has had stand out tight ends play in recent years as Will Dissly, Drew Sample, and Hunter Bryant are all either in the NFL or about to be. The problem has been consistent recruiting as the Huskies failed to recruit any tight ends this past season and have 2 and are still trying to get a 3rd potentially in the 2020 class to make up for it. Cato’s first test on the job will be to get a signature from TE recruit Jack Yary out of Southern California who visited before the early signing period but did not commit anywhere.

Cato has been at Washington for 4 seasons and so knows the rest of the staff and the philosophy that Jimmy Lake is trying to keep in place. He also has worked closely with incoming OC John Donovan which means he will be the only UW assistant coach to have been colleagues with every other Husky assistant. Only time will tell if that is a sign of cohesion across the ranks or a lack of imagination in coming up with a hire.

This now completes the Husky assistant coaching staff and the only other item of note is that Ikiaka Malloe was promoted to co-defensive coordinator. Previously Lake had shared DC duties with Pete Kwiatkowski before being promoted to head coach. It appears Lake would like to keep up the tradition of rewarding a promising defensive assistant coach by giving him a job title upgrade.

Welcome Derham and let’s hope we see immediate recruiting dividends with the hire similar to how Junior Adams was able to get Puka Nacua signed shortly after becoming the wide receivers coach last year.