Dawgbytes - 9/16

Washington head coach Keith Gilbertson had some good news to talk about Tuesday afternoon as his football team continued preparations for their Saturday tilt with the Idaho Vandals. A new Husky is expected on campus tomorrow, one that has been looking forward to calling himself a 'Dawg'.

True frosh Juan Garcia, a 6-4, 280-pound lineman from Yakima (Wash.) Eisenhower, had been given permission from the NCAA Clearinghouse to be with the team pending a resolution of his case. Technically there has not been a final decision in his case, but this move signifies that Juan is very close to fulfilling his dream of playing for UW.

The University of Washington is on the quarter system, and fall quarter does not start at UW until September 29th. Conceiveably, Garcia could enroll with the rest of his class despite not having been with the team since the beginning of fall camp in early August.

"He's been in Yakima the whole time, so it's been hard on him," Gilbertson said. "He should be with us tomorrow. The odyssey is over."

Since he wasn't with the original group of true frosh that had to go through a 5- day 'climatization' period, Garcia does not have to go through that, although Gilbertson acknowledged that they will 'go slow' with him and expects Juan to redshirt.

Gilbertson also updated the status of the walking wounded wearing purple and gold. "Cody Pickett threw exceptionally well yesterday," he said. "He looks fresh." Dan Dicks, Charles Frederick, Reggie Williams and Tyler Krambrink are all nursing ailments of some sort, but nothing that will keep them out of action Saturday.

"Tyler (Krambrink) is out of red now and his hand is healed," Gilbertson said of the senior outside linebacker from Eatonville. "He's full steam now and ready to go but we'll probably have him wear a protective cast just to make sure everything is good."

Rob Meadow and Joe Lobendahn, both sidelined for the season with ACL injuries, will have their respective surgeries a week from Tuesday, September 23rd. There is a reason for the delay. "We wanted to wait a couple of weeks for things to settle down," Gilbertson said. "Once that happens, it helps the surgery go smoother, as well as having less rehab."

Gilbertson still has questions in regards to true frosh Anthony Russo, Clarence 'Dre' Simpson and C.J. Wallace, so it's not clear if they are going to redshirt. Freshman Tahj Bomar has moved into the 2-deeps at WIL.

Dan Milsten has moved from defensive end inside, backing up Terry Johnson. This puts the battle at the one end position squarely between Graham Lasee and Donny Mateaki. Mike Mapu continues to run with the threes and it's becoming more apparent that the chances of a redshirt year for the JC-transfer are strong.

At the other end spot, Manase Hopoi is the clear number one, with Brandon Ala and Ty Eriks pushing for playing time. Eriks is a newcomer to the position, moving from fullback, but with his size, speed and motor could see some situational time relatively soon. This is all being done in an effort to speed up the DL, especially in regard to pass rush.

Lastly, Gilbertson addressed the idea of having a bye week later in the year. "I like it later, especially when school is in session," he said. "All this was was an interruption.

"It's nice to have a non-school routine uninterrupted, then have our school schedule with a bye week somewhere in there. I like 'em later when you're into your final routine of the year."

He also pointed out the recruiting benefits of a later bye week. "It gives us an opportunity to see high school players later in the year when they are in their groove, and it also allows us the ability to not make rush judgements on players."

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