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Originally published May 24, 2007 at 12:00 AM | Page modified May 24, 2007 at 2:01 AM

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WSU Football | Bad time to search for a new assistant

Washington State's football program already was facing a 2007 season with an unproven secondary. Now the uncertainty includes a new assistant...

Seattle Times staff reporter

Washington State's football program already was facing a 2007 season with an unproven secondary. Now the uncertainty includes a new assistant coach.

Ken Greene, former standout WSU safety in the 1970s, later an NFL player and for the past four years an assistant under Bill Doba, has been dismissed from the staff.

The Cougars have made no announcement of the move. A news release is expected shortly, likely to take the form of a resignation by Greene.

After the 2006 season ended and defensive coordinator Robb Akey took the head-coaching job at Idaho, Doba took over coordinator duties and halved Greene's secondary responsibility by assigning him solely to coach cornerbacks.

Neither Doba nor athletic director Jim Sterk commented Wednesday on the move.

Few staff changes occur at this time of year — most of them take place in January and February — so WSU likely will find a limited field of candidates from major-conference programs.

It is, however, a relatively inactive stretch for programs. In a week, the April-May evaluation period of high-school recruits ends.

Last week, Montana State fired head coach Mike Kramer over off-field problems by current and former players. Kramer, a native of Colton near Pullman, has considerable ties to the state of Washington, but most of his background is with linemen.

Three former Cougars are on the Montana State staff — Jason McEndoo, Jay Dumas and Jeremy Thielbahr — but none specializes in the secondary.

Whoever fills the vacancy will be trying to help turn around secondary problems, which have included academic woes and sporadic play in recent seasons.

The Cougars last season allowed more yards per game (243.1) than any other Pac-10 team. In 2005, WSU surrendered 27 touchdown passes and had only 10 interceptions.

Bud Withers: 206-464-8281 or bwithers@seattletimes.com

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