Ask Dawgman 7/28/04

Basketball season is getting a lot of love, as Kim Grinolds went to Las Vegas to sit with just about every hoops coach in the country, as Adidas, Nike, and Reebok all had tournaments going on this past weekend. Oh yea, football practices are only a couple of weeks away now. Read on!

From Jeff Novack
I saw you mention Jay Roberts - ex-baseball player turned psycho-Husky. What ever happened to him? I played on a couple of Intramural teams with him - a truly crazy guy! the rumor was that he was kicked out of Atlanta by the hard-ass manager (currently with the Yankees). He also had some trouble with the law.

A: Jay was tragically killed in a car crash after his Husky days were over. God rest his soul.
From Todd Charleson
Dear Dawgman:
I was reading another web site, not as good as, and it said that Keauntea Bankhead will miss his freshman season. Why? Also I was reading Sports Washington and one of the articles from a past issue talked about how USC was behind Washington going on probation in the early 90's. What were the things that they did to help the NCAA investigation?

A: Bankhead did not pass his SAT. He will take it again and attempt to enroll into the UW in the Winter quarter. USC's boosters fed the LA Times a lot of dirt about the UW in the 1990s, when the Huskies were the strength of the conference. A couple of disgruntled UW players from the LA area were very forthcoming with negative information as well. USC was not behind the probation, though. They just fed the fire with more fuel.
From Everett
It appears that the upcoming 2004 Husky Football season will be another bleak , ho-hum year with Gilby in charge. I fear that the NCAA will hit the Dawgs hard with stiff penalties to once again make the Huskies the scapegoats for not being in control of recruiting activities and the coaching staff. Will the U-Dub program survive another sanction? We have lost top recruits on the West Coast and in state recently and that could be the trend if this program cannot change quickly and adept to NCAA rules.

A: Washington will survive this. The penalties won't be as severe this time, as the school defended itself this time, as opposed to asking players to not only self-report anything they thought was irregular, but to also make stuff up. It's a different day, and I'm certain that this staff knows about the NCAA rules. The old staff under James knew them backwards and forwards, as did most of the influential alums, thanks to the Husky Hunters program, which educated boosters about the rules. The new compliance office is a much higher paying gig than Dana had when she was in that role. They'll expect a lot out of that position.
From Dav Family
What is up with Gilby eliminating the open summer scrimmage, to me it was a great way for alumni and fans to see the team. Do you think he will ever change his mind on that, thanks and keep up the good work !

A: Keith is still figuring out the practice schedule. I don't think that the final scrimmage that signals the end of 2-a-days is necessarily closed. We'll see. If it is, it is because the staff wants to keep their formations, personnel groupings, and play calls off of the internet, where everyone is an expert.
From Ivar Pihl
I have long been a believer in the proposition, "It's what's up front that counts." That is particularly true for the game of football. And, I believe the James Mystique can be summarized, "He heavily recruited the big, quick and agile players who could man the trenches, both on the O and the D side of the line of scrimmage. Since James tenure ended, I have not been impressed that recruiting has focused on both O and D linemen. Neuheisel did a great job in his recruiting of skilled positions. But, our running game and opposition yards per carry suffered badly from the lack of big time linemen. I was delighted at the selection of Gilbertson as the Head Coach. Believing that he, as a coach under James, had a first hand knowledge of the recruiting game. Meaning, get those big, quick linemen, first. His first class of recruits did not suggest to me that Gilby learned the recruiting lesson from James. Am I correct, or is there something I have missed? I have been a Tyee member and Season Ticket holder for a number of years. I like my team being a winner. I am anxious for a return to a punishing running game. Seems to me we have the right set of pig-skin poachers. But, they won't succeed without those studs up front opening some holes. Am I right in this, or am I missing something?

A: I cannot argue with anything you wrote, Ivar. It is what's up front that counts, and Washington is thin on experience and proven commodities up front. You can only get by on potential for so long before you are exposed. Gilby is addressing it, but we'll see if it turns around quick enough. He is going to need to win while he's building the depth up front, and he knows it.
From Elder
What happened to Derrick Bradley and Scott Ballew???

A: Bradley is a partial qualifier and will most likely play corner at Washington, while Ballew transferred out of the program in search of more playing time.
From Aaron B
It brought back memories to see Jay Roberts name in print on your last "Ask Dawgman" column. My dad and I have been watching high school football, basketball and baseball for over thirty years (my dad more like fifty years). And we will both tell you that Jay Roberts was the most dominating high school athlete we have ever seen. When he was a running back for Centrailia High School he looked like a man playing with boys. The Tigers would hand the ball to him and he would run straight ahead. It would literally take 5-6 guys to get him to the ground every time. All I remember is a pile of 4-5 guys hanging on to Jay as he ran down field effortlessly. Centrailia ended up going to the King Bowl and Centrailia were the State Champs with Jay as the King Bowl MVP. Centrailia was also the State Champs in baseball and basketball with Jay as the star. He was offered $100,000 out of high school to sign with the Atlanta Braves were he spent about five years in their minor league system. He then quit and went to play for the Dawgs were he was a special teams standout. He got into some trouble off the field and left school to enter the working world. Still he had a flare for the limelight as he continued to play softball. I know it's "softball" but crowds would gather around whatever diamond Jay was on because when he came to bat it was quite something. He would hit the ball so hard that it would still be rising well after it had left the field. I have never seen anyone hit a ball harder. Tragically Jay was killed in a car wreck about eight years ago. He will be remembered as a tremendous athlete and a very nice guy. Love the site,

A: Thank you for sharing your note, Aaron.
From Jack Sonnichsen in Richland, WA
Now that Rick and Barbara are gone, do you think we can get some different uniforms? I must admit both the purple and gold are a shade too soft for me. We need a color combination that makes a statement and has a little "attitude". The gold reminds me too much of the Bruins, (surprise, surprise). Also, I suggest we swap out the ribbing for a couple of stripes. Here's another suggestion, hire Coach James back as a fashion consultant. At least Rick gave us our helmets back.

A: I'm not a huge fan of the "gold" either. It seems too khaki to me, but if they win, it won't matter what they are wearing. DJ is too busy having fun on the golf course to be a fashion designer. I had the pleasure of playing in front of Don and Carol at Lambo's golf tourney this year, and even though he's had shoulder surgery, he's still a stick.
From Big Al in Vancouver, BC
1) With Bankhead out - What will the two-deeps look at safety look like? Is the Wallace the guy at SS or will the rotate Goldson to that spot. What do you see happening and maybe mention what you think separates the candidates (Newell, Goldson, Wallace, and Hemphill). This will be one of the most exciting battles in camp
2) What is the word on Bandel and Toledo? Also, after Bandel, Toledo, and Lyon - who is the best of the rest at TE. Rob Lewis / Dash Crutchley looked impressive physically at the Spring Game. Who do you see as being the one that will step it up?

A: Two deeps at safety will be Newell and Goldson with the ones, Wallace and Simpson at the twos. Bandel should be fine, Toledo is working hard to rehab his back and is reportedly making good progress. Fingers crossed that he has not setbacks. Crutchley is ahead of Lewis at this point. Rob needs more size and experience at his new position.
From Ken Franek
Jonathan Stewart says he wants to stay close to home to be with his mother. That's great but he says he is NOT considering the Huskies. He says he wants to play early, yet he never talks about the Huskies. What am I missing here? Why such a dislike for the Washington program?

A: It's very early right now, but Stewart has never been that enamored with Washington. Potential sanctions may have something to do with that. But there is a lot of time before the visits happen. Give it a bit more time until you pay close attention to his list of schools.
From Ccnuckols7
Will the huskies have a strong defensive line and good depth?

A: This year's defensive line, on paper, will be green and unproven. We'll see if Randy Hart can work some magic with the depth somehow. Here is probably how I think that the starters will line up against FSU:
DT: Donny Mateaki (6-5 295 soph), Manase Hopoi (6-4 280 senior)
DE: Mike Mapu (6-3 270 junior), Brandon Ala (6-2 225 soph) OR Ty Eriks (6-2 235 junior).
Depth: Casey Tyler, Dan Milsten, Jordan Reffett, Wilson Afoa.
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