The 7-5 Seahawks welcome the 4-8 Carolina Panthers to Lumen Field Sunday, as the playoff push continues. In addition to having big implications as Seattle fights for a berth, the Week 14 matchup serves as a reunion for coaches and staff. Here are a few connections between the teams ahead of the NFC meeting.
Pete Carroll: Head of Defense With North Carolina Ties
Head Coach Pete Carroll navigated the college ranks during his time as a graduate assistant at The University of the Pacific - his alma mater. After serving as an assistant at Arkansas, Carroll served as secondary coordinator at Iowa State and Ohio State before being named NC State's defensive coordinator in 1980. Hired by Super Bowl and National Collegiate Championship-winning coach Monte Kiffin, Carroll spent two years in Raleigh before returning to his alma mater as offensive
Scott Fitterer: Change of Pace
Panthers General Manager Scott Fitterer returns to Seattle with his new team for the first time in Week 14 since leaving the organization in 2020. The Seattle native spent nearly two decades with the Seahawks, rising from an area scout in 2001 to Vice president of football operations.
Fitterer also hired Dan Morgan, with whom he spent eight years in Seattle's front office, as his assistant general manager last year.
Bruce Irvin: For Old Time's Sake
Seahawks linebacker Bruce Irvin is six games into his third stint with the team after re-signing in November. This weekend, he faces the franchise that saw him notch a career-high 8.5 sacks in 2019.
*Gavin Heslop: A Year in Seattle *
Second-year cornerback Gavin Heslop returns to Seattle to face the first team that gave him a shot as an undrafted free agent. The Stony Brook alum signed following the 2020 NFL Draft, playing three games mainly on special teams while battling injuries.
Husky Pride: Three the Hard Way
Former Washington Huskies linebackers Shaq Thompson and Cory Littleton, along with cornerback alum Keith Taylor. Jr will return to their old stomping grounds this weekend. Littleton is the eldest of the group and the only one to go undrafted. That hasn't stopped him playing seven years or from earning All-Pro honors in 2018 with the Los Angeles Rams.
Thompson earned the 2014 Paul Hornung Award, All-American and All-Pac 12 honors in his final year at Washington, selected by Carolina in the first round of the 2015 draft.
Taylor was an integral piece to the Huskies defense during his time in college, contributing from a true freshman to his senior year. Following the abbreviated 2020 season due to Covid-19, Taylor was selected by Carolina in the fifth round of the 2021 draft.
Frankie Luvu: The Wazzou Way
Fifth-year Washington State alum linebacker Frankie Luvu is having a career-year in season two with Carolina. Through 10 games played, Luvu has notched career-highs in combined tackles (74), sacks (4), and recorded his first-career interception against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 4. The undrafted free agent played 46 games for the Cougars, before signing with the New York Jets following the 2018 draft.
On December 8, 2022, Seahawks local military community participated in a light physical fitness workout and huddle with Seahawks General Manager John Schneider, Seahawks Legends Paul Johns, Ben Obomanu, Lofa Tatupu, Orlando Huff, Edwin Bailey at Rebel Fitness. In addition, Marines from Toys for Tots were in attendance at the event.