MONDAY: 8/27 AM

This morning's session was about as one-sided as it has been since the Huskies started up fall practices August 18th. The team received a much-needed day off on Sunday, and it looked like the offensive line forgot that they had some work to do this morning.

REB linebacker Houdini Jackson capped off a scintilating morning with a pick off of Cody Pickett. Pickett and tight end John Westra got their wires crossed to give Jackson his room service interception, prompting the defense to break out in mass celebration.

Jackson really looked strong all practice, no matter which offensive lineman he faced. Both Anthony Kelley and Kai Ellis also made life difficult for the line, getting good upfield pressure. Offensive Line coach Brent Myers let his guys know that it was not one of their best practices.

Washington's defensive front of Larry Tripplett, Marcus Roberson, Jerome Stevens, Terry Johnson, Josh Miller and Tui Alailefaleula all looked strong this morning. Alailefaleula could still redshirt, however, as Washington has Junior Coffin inside as well. It will be a battle that will continue well into the fall.

The linebackers are active and fast. Kai Ellis, Zach Tuiasosopo, Anthony Kelly and Houdini Jackson are all stepping up and making things tough on the offense. Manase Hopoi would have been considered in this rotation too, as he has been having a really solid fall, but is ineligible to play based on his status as a partial qualifier.

This could be the deepest position on the defense.

Freshman linbacker Tim Galloway and true sophomore Marquis Cooper are right in the thick of it when it comes time to pick a starting lineup. Depth here is outstanding as seniors Jamaun Willis and junior Ben Mahdavi are current starters at those positions. When you add freshman Joseph Lobendahn to that mix it's a potent group. They have all looked excellent all fall and today was no exception. Since Tyler Krambrink is out with a broken hand, Lobendahn will probably play this fall.

Roderick Green was back on the field, a welcome sight. He and Wondame Davis provide more speed in the back 40 and both bring cornerback experience with them to provide good coverage skills in the secondary.

Sam Cunningham is also making a strong bid for a lot of playing time along with Omare Lowe and Chris Massey. Cunningham made a particularly nice move on receiver Patrick Reddick to bat the ball away from the senior. He also opened eyes at the scrimmage Saturday. As long as Husky DB coach Chuck Heater can keep the learning curve steep for the freshman from Los Angeles, Sam could be a difference-maker in the secondary.

Offensively, it was a struggle today. Other than a very nice grab by true freshman receiver Reggie Williams over safety Greg Carothers, the offense was lethargic. That combined with an active defense allowed the quarterbacks to one their scrambling skills.

Another bright spot was seeing fullback Kenny Walker back on the field. The senior from Honolulu will immediately be thrown into the mix for the number one fullback job along with juniors Spencer Marona and Matthias Wilson.

Punters Derek McLaughlin and Jim Skurski weren't quite as impressive as they were on Saturday, with the senior from Seattle having a bit more of a consistent morning over the true freshman from Mesa, Arizona.

Receiving punts this morning was Charles Frederick. "ET" looked to be back to 100 percent and happy to be back in the mix. It was a great sight to see number 10 back on the field and making a contribution. If he stays healthy and quickly gets back the time lost when he sat out at TESC, he'll be yet another weapon on this young offense.

Notes:

The wrath of Rick: Coach Neuheisel was visibly displeased with his team's effort at practice this morning. It was difficult to tell when practice actually ended, as virtually every position stayed after for exra work.

Running Wounded: Strength and Conditioning Coach Bill Gillespie was working with linebacker Jafar Williams, linebacker Tyler Krambrink, cornerback Derrick Johnson and safety James Sims as the team practiced this morning. They were doing stairs and other conditioning drills. Tight End Joe Toledo was on the sidelines doing situps, staying as busy as he can.

Breaking in the new field: The Huskies ran practice today on the newly laid FieldTurf just East of the stadium. It was the first time the Huskies have used the new field.

Shadow Dancing: As Charles Frederick was back fielding punts, Coach Rick Neuheisel was providing a distraction for the freshman from Boca Raton, Florida. While the ball travelled toward ET, Neuheisel shadowed in front of him.

This afternoon's practice begins at 4PM.

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