Dan Cozzetto: Quotable

Husky offensive line coach Dan Cozzetto has seen it all in his 30 years as a an assistant coach, so nothing that happens in the first few days of spring ball really excites him. He did however take the time to talk about things after Washington's third practice including who his starting five would be if the Huskies played a game this weekend...

On how the line is progressing: "They're doing okay. The first two are in laundry, so we don't hit anybody until today so this will be good video to watch and find out where we're at and then we have the pads on Tuesday, full pads, so we'll get after it a little bit more."

On James Atoe so far: "He's working hard. He took 30 pounds off. Ivan Lewis and his guys have done a great job with him and he's moving better and getting stronger."

On how long it takes a line to gel: "It's imperative that they do a lot of things together. They lift together, they work together, they hang out, they work out. You never know though because the chemistry is different this year compared to last year. I think we're a lot closer, but we've got to make some decisions about who's going to take over that right tackle spot. Now, there's some guys that will play, but I think we'll develop our chemistry a little bit faster. The direction of the group will be shaped around Senio (Kelemete) and (Drew) Schaefer, obviously, so it will come, but we need to find out who the quality backups behind those guys."

On not having to flip things around so much: "They're my own guys. They're the guys that have come up through the system and I know more about them. They've been in the strength program a couple years now and they've gone through winter conditioning and all that, so it's much further ahead."

On finding the top five linemen: "I'll find five. You're as good as your backups. So it's the ‘what if' game. ‘If Schaefer goes down, who's going to be the center?' and right now it's going to be either Colin Porter or Danny Kancguowski. I'm really reluctant to take Colin and move him out of the (guard spot), but if he has to do it, he's gotta do it, but that's why we need to bring another center along."

On wanting to find the top five as soon as possible: "I'd like that a lot and to get more guys involved in the game. You can do that with your guards, but you always want to maintain you center and left tackle all the time in the game, I think those are critical spots, but I think at right tackle you can move guys around. We don't have a lot of guys right now, so some of the young guys are getting a lot of reps, which is good."

On Ben Riva right now: "He's had an outstanding offseason and he continues to grow and he works so hard in everything he does."

On Micah Hatchie: "It's coming at him fast – all the terminology, all the calls – and that slows him down. Hopefully he's going to play better next week and by the end of spring that his game has progressed a lot further from where it was when he first got here."

On who would play if they had a game tomorrow: "I'd probably go with Ben Riva at right tackle and plug in (Erik) Kohler at left guard and then you can fill in the blanks with the other three returners."

On Riva being further ahead: "He's a lot further ahead (than they expected). I think it's just a matter of maturing. He's carrying 300 pounds like it's 250. He's running really well. He has to get used to the body that God gave him. He's got tremendous long arms and he hasn't figured out that he can scratch the back of your head and not even realize it if you're standing five feet away from him. He's got to realize all of the tools that he was given. I have no problem with Ben. Ben's going to work hard and he's come from a good football background."

Dawgman.com Top Stories