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Jackson fired after one season

Former GCC player dismissed on Tuesday as Raiders look to start over following 8-8 season.

January 10, 2012|By Gabriel Rizk, gabriel.rizk@latimes.com

Within the first few words uttered by Reggie McKenzie, the tone was set for Tuesday afternoon’s press conference to introduce McKenzie as the new general manager of the Oakland Raiders.

McKenzie, with owner Mark Davis by his side, opened the media session stressing the need for wholesale change, saying, “The Raider organization, with respect and deference for all of its tradition and history, is about to embark on a new era,” and in the very next breath announced his first change — the firing of Coach Hue Jackson after one season on the job.


“I felt there was a need for change at the head coaching position from the top,” McKenzie said in explaining his motivation for dismissing the former Glendale Community College quarterback. “We’re moving into a new era. No disrespect to Coach Jackson, but it’s something I wanted to start anew.
“Everything is based on performance, No. 1, but I go with my gut a lot, so when it’s time to make to make the final call, my gut’s going to tell me one thing. ...Recently I let [Davis] know I would like to move on from Coach Jackson and begin my search for a new coach and he was alright with that.”

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A reportedly shocked Jackson was informed of the decision Tuesday morning, shortly before the press conference, by McKenzie, who was hired on Friday. For one, Jackson was unconvinced that the impetus for the firing came from McKenzie, with whom Jackson shares agent Kennard McGuire, instead maintaining that it was Davis who wanted to change directions.


“I’m not going to shed one tear, because I busted my ass for this organization, and I cherished the opportunity to do it,” Jackson said Tuesday in a telephone interview with Yahoo! Sports’ Michael Silver shortly after he received the news. “I have nothing but good things to say about the Raiders and their fans, and I’m proud of what I was able to accomplish in two years, as an offensive coordinator and coach.
“But it’s Mark Davis’ football team, and Mark’s going to do what he thinks is best. In the end I think he said, ‘I want to put my own stamp on it,’ and he wanted his own coach.”

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