After 25 years at Washington, Jen Cohen decided USC was a better fit
“There’s probably nowhere else in America that we can develop into our best selves more so than USC,” Cohen said.
Jen Cohen once told me that as a senior at Curtis High School, she applied to three colleges: Arizona State, San Diego State and the University of Washington. You probably know by now that Cohen grew up attending UW football games with her father, and that she idolized coach Don James.
She wanted to be a Husky.
Instead, she was waitlisted.
“Heartbroken,” was how she put it.
UW eventually offered admission, she said, but Cohen had already chosen to attend San Diego State.
“I was a good student,” Cohen told me in 2016, not long after she was hired as UW’s athletic director. “But I’m more of a street-smart girl than I probably am anything else.”
I wonder if she thought about any of this on Monday. This time, it was Cohen passing on UW, departing the school after seven years as AD — and 25, total, as a UW employee — for the same job at USC.