Old Coug teaches D smart way

<b>JAMES HASTY</b> WAS born to knock heads. Since his days at Seattle's Franklin High and even as a receiver at Central Washington before moving on to starring roles as a cornerback at WSU and in the NFL, it was apparent he loved to hit. So it was no surprise this past weekend at Bellevue High that the "James Hasty Select Camp" for prep gridders was focused on one side of the ball: The side Hasty loves --- DEFENSE!

Yet for all the nasty hits Hasty had a reputation for delivering over the years, it became clear to all observers over the weekend that his secret for success was far more cerebral than physical. After morning workouts, Hasty had his 50 charges hitting the class room to breakdown tape of their own performances as well as the Washington Huskies' during their most recent spring game.

Watching Hasty work was akin to looking over the shoulder of a surgeon at the operating table. Slicing, dissecting, analyzing. No detail is too small. Every cause has and effect.

Hasty likened the game to a chess match, where defenders are strategizing as much against the coaches in the booth as they are against the offense on the field. He talked about the defense not having to worry about a 25-second clock, so they could disguise schemes and create different looks at a second's notice.

Hasty knows well what he's talking about. He starred at WSU from 1986-87 and, after being drafted in third round of 1988, became a starter with the Jets in his rookie campaign. He remained a starter throughout his long and distinguished NFL career with the Jets and Chiefs.

Watching the film before the afternoon session, more than once Hasty could be heard from behind the VCR. "Man, you're killing me!" he would say, following up with a critique of the issue at hand. With former Chiefs teammate Tracy Simien also there to work with the LBs and DBs, the coaches were all over the players' early miscues. They were also quick to heap praise on a player when things were done to their satisfaction.

The highlight of the first day of the Hasty camp was when Lawyer Milloy, former Husky and starter on New England's Super Bowl-winning team, talked about the respect he has for the game and the players that play it.

"One of my old teammates was Curtis Martin," Milloy told the group of campers. "And when he went to the New York Jets, I told him, 'I'm going to give you my all, Curtis. I'm going to try and kill you on every play because I respect you and you deserve that respect.'"

Some of the area's top prep athletes came from throughout the Northwest aattended this select camp. Future EWU Eagle Anthony Dotson from Federal Way came to soak up some NFL teaching before heading to Cheney. Bellevue Wolverine Jeff Dicks, younger brother of Husky OL Dan Dicks, also came by to work out with the linebackers. He'll be attending Cornell this fall.

There were plenty of top high school juniors too. Tay Hermes, a 6-1, 225-pound linebacker from Keizer (Ore.) McNary made the trip to Bellevue and looked the part of a tough, hard-nosed linebacker. Bellarmine Prep senior-to-be Patrick McKillop, who is drawing interest from WSU and others, was on hand. So was Anthony Rosso of Walla Walla, Tracy Ford (who is tranferring from Decatur to Bellevue this fall), Mercer Island's Michael Gottlieb, Shorewood's David Hancock and Wade Gurnett, O'Dea's Andre Geraghty and White River's Jason Gran, among others.

And let's not forget the rising juniors-to-be. Bellevue High's J.R. Hasty (James' son), worked was there, as was Rainier Beach's Sheldon Danzy. Both are going to be difference-makers for their respective teams this fall.

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