Posted by Chris Fetters
KJR interview podcasts are up
Saturday's interviews with Scott Woodward and Kasen Williams are now up on our Dawgman page on KJR. You can access them by clicking on the link below.
KJR's Dawgman podcast page
Posted by Chris Fetters
Post-camp best guess three-deeps
I'm keeping Special Teams out, just because they don't go three-deep on kicker or punter. But as far as depth at KOR and PR - C. Polk, Callier, K. Smith and Trufant look to be there for KOR, and Aguilar and Fogerson have been consistently there for PR.
That being said, here's my best guess at a post-Camp Sark three-deep roster. And please try and keep the questions about 'where is so and so?' to a minimum. This is just my opinion based on what I've seen. It's carved in soap. And I'm not including those that didn't play Saturday (Kalani Aldrich and Brandon Huppert)
And I'm going 12 positions on offense - so I'm covered depending on if they go 3-wide or with a TE.
QB - Jake Locker, Keith Price, Nick Montana
RB - Chris Polk, Johri Fogerson or Jesse Callier, Demitrius Bronson
FB - Austin Sylvester, Dorson Boyce, Kimo Makaula or Zach Fogerson
TE - Chris Izbicki, Michael Hartvigson, Marek Domanski or Evan Hudson
WR - Jermaine Kearse, James Johnson, Kevin Smith
WR - Devin Aguilar, D'Andre Goodwin, DiAndre Campbell
WR - Jordan Polk or Cody Bruns, William Chandler
LT - Senio Kelemete, Erik Kohler, Skyler Fancher
RG - Ryan Tolar, Nick Wood, Colin Tanigawa
C - Drew Schaefer, Greg Christine, Mykenna Ikehara
RG - Greg Christine, Mykenna Ikehara or Colin Porter
RT - Cody Habben, Daniel Kanczugowski or Skyler Fancher
DE - Talia Crichton, Hauoli Jamora, Andrew Hudson or Josh Shirley
DT - Alameda Ta'amu, Semisi Tokolahi, Lawrence Lagafuaina
DT - Cameron Elisara, Chris Robinson, Sione Potoae
DE - Everrette Thompson, De'Shon Matthews, Andrew Hudson or Josh Shirley
LEO - Victor Aiyewa, Matt Houston or Jordan Wallace, Cooper Pelluer
MIK - Cort Dennison, Tim Tucker, Victor Burnett or Garret Gilliland
WIL - Mason Foster, Matt Houston or Jordan Wallace, Princeton Fuimaono
S - Nate Williams, Sean Parker, Greg Walker
S - Will Shamburger or Nate Fellner, Justin Glenn, Taz Stevenson
CB - Quinton Richardson, Adam Long, Anthony Gobern or Greg Ducre
CB - Desmond Trufant, Vonzell McDowell, Anthony Boyles
Posted by Chris Fetters
Saturday Cort Dennison Quotes
On knee - It's good. I'm getting treatment every day. I expect to be full-go for BYU. I'll be ready to go. I'm practicing all week. I'm not sitting out again, I can't stand it. It just adds fuel to the fire.
On BYU - I know it's cliche, it still is another game. It's the same football field, same everything. It's just where I'm from. But I realize this is what we've worked hard for. We've practiced hard, prepared hard, worked hard in the off-season. Now let's put it all together for this first game. We've worked too hard not to put on a good show. We expect really good things.
On seeing the game on the schedule when he first came to UW - I loved it. I've been looking forward to this game for a long time. Just to go home and see my family and my friends - I'm going to have a bunch of family and friends there (at the game). I have a lot of friends on BYU's football team, so it's going to be a fun atmosphere, but I can't let that get to me. I have to realize that it's just football - so go out there, have fun and hit people in the mouth.
On getting recruited by BYU - They recruited me. They recruited me a lot harder than Utah did. And then when I started getting interest from other schools that I would be more interested in going to, I told them that I was more interested in other schools and they backed off. (He's Catholic)
On BYU having a big following - BYU, their football tradition is incredible there. Look at all the quarterbacks there…McMahon, coach Sark, everybody…Steve Young. They have a great tradition. Our coaches have installed in our heads that even though they aren't in the Pac-10 we better get ready to play. You saw what they did to Oregon State last year. They beat Oklahoma last year. They can play football…great football team, well-coached football team and they have a lot of great players - so we need to come to play. They are ready to hit us in the mouth, so we have to give it back to them.
On his knee - I just got a helmet to the knee and it bent back. The coaches have been really good this week. I hate sitting out of practice because I'm way too competitive. I see things and I'd be like, I would have done that - but the coaches were smart and made me stay off it. I'll be good to go next week and be close to 100 percent for BYU.
On proving a point to Utah because of the proximity to his high school? - No. Those are two good schools, and I grew up going to Utah games, but I'm totally happy where I am. I couldn't ask for anything better. We have a great coaching staff; I love my teammates; I love the city of Seattle. I'm totally happy where I am. I don't have any regrets, I don't have any harsh feelings for anybody. I'm completely comfortable with where I'm at, so now it's just time to play football.
On the distractions of going home - I just have to realize that it's a normal game. I've been playing this game since the seventh grade and I've had family and friends everywhere I go. I have family and friends always up at Husky Stadium and I do just fine. Yeah, I'm in a different setting - I'm back at home - but it's still the game of football. You still play the same rules, the same everything. I'm sure before the game Sark will come up to me, Mason, Nate - they'll tell me that everything will be alright. I'll be good. It's going to be an exciting game.
On dealing with the altitude - I'm telling everybody they need to get hydrated a lot and be prepared for the air. The air is a lot different, they'll be breathing heavier. That's why I'm telling them to hydrate so much, so their bodies will be more comfortable. When you get up to that altitude it's definitely harder to breathe when you start running. I think Sark's gonna…when we get down there we'll probably run around a little during our walk-through to help us get used to it. Sark's doing a good job of helping us out. And they turned the volume up pretty loud yesterday at our thing at the VMAC. It's a really hard place to play, it's always loud. They have a great fan base. We realize too that it's not just going to be the air, but it's going to be the fans - it's going to be really loud.
On practicing at the VMAC on Friday - We were outdoors yesterday, on the grass. Because they want us to get used to BYU's grass.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Saturday James Johnson Quotes
How are you feeling? "I'm feeling pretty good. It was nice to go out there and get some reps. I'm just looking forward to getting some treatment and getting healthy, and wherever they place me, I'll do what I can do from there."
Ready to travel to BYU? "I feel like mentally. I haven't missed a day, I've been in tune to the meetings and everything, and I know all the coaching points and my routes and my blocking assignments. So, yeah, I feel like I can do that."
Are you physically ready? "Like I said, we've got practice all week, so I'll continue to go out and practice and see how it goes. We'll see how the strength holds up."
How today was: "I felt like it held up pretty good. It was a little sore that first part, after one-on-ones, but I got some rest; I don't want to run it into the ground. Hopefully, I'll be back in there real soon."
Sprained ankle? "Yeah, sprained ankle and bone bruise. That's what made it tough. My situation was a little different from other ankle sprains because I was blocking and a guy rolled up on me."
Coming back early: "Oh, yeah, I think. I was out here watching the guys, and my treatment was going pretty good, so I was like, 'Oh, I'll be OK. Once I warm it up, it'll be fine.' Then I go out there and try to make the cut, and I've got no strength; I fell right to the ground. Unfortunately, I re-aggrevated it more, which in turn made me miss even more time out there."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Saturday Steve Sarkisian Quotes
On this practice being the end of camp - they get to move out of the dorms. I'm sure they want to get back to their own beds and their own pillows. So to them, that's the end of camp.
Cort - He's back, he'll be fine.
James Johnson - He showed some things. We need him to get back out, because the passing game is so much timing and rhythm, and if you're not out there it's hard to jump back in and expect to play. It's good that he got out there today and tested it and he looked pretty good.
Going back to BYU - There's some people there I know for sure, good friends. I just haven't been back. You move on in life and try to play professional football for a few years, you get married and you're working - it just didn't play out to have an opportunity to get back there, but I still have some very good friends there.
On having a chance for himself there - I'll be pretty locked in, but Friday when we get there, I'll take it all in. I had some great moments in that stadium, some tremendous wins. We had an excellent football team my senior year. I'll reminisce for a few minutes and then get back into what we need to do.
On circling this game - To me it's been another game. It's going to be a tough game, on the road, in a hostile environment. But as we get closer I'm kind of thinking more about the memories of playing there. It was a long time ago, but there were some special memories and some great moments.
On why he chose BYU - I was a junior college transfer; I was a quarterback. I wanted to go to an environment that one, had an offense that I felt like I could produce in and have fun playing in, and playing time was an issue I felt like it was a good situation for me. I wanted to go somewhere where I could focus on school and football and get my degree and move on in life, and it was a good fit.
On not being LDS - Culturally it's a little bit different, and I think initially it was, but there was a mutual respect factor that I respected the religion and people respected me for who I was and we moved on.
On his UW offense using BYU elements - There are some similarities; there's some concept similarities in the passing game that are still evident, but that's about the extent of it. I've taken things from that offense, things from my junior college offense, things from the Saskatchewan Roughriders offense, and then you get into coaching. So I guess our offense is somewhat of a grab-bag. It's what you like everywhere you go, and you start to assemble the things you feel are effective and you liked as either a player or a coach, and then you develop more things as you grow within the same place you are at.
On Raise the Woof - I thought it was great. There was a lot of excitement in the air. I thought our kids represented extremely well and I thought our coaches represented extremely well. I think it's something that signifies the end of camp and the season is on the horizon. It's kind of a glorified pep rally.
On Everrette Thompson - He looks good, he looks really good. He'll be fine to play. Kalani is not looking quite as good. Still some things in that knee, the overall strength there, but Everrette does look good.
On Senio Kelemete - I think he looks fine. He's still a little sore but he looks fine.
On Greg Christine at right guard --- He's there for right now, doing a nice job We're going to nail down our depth chart so you'll have it Monday what we are going to do. But I think Greg looks good at right guard.
On true freshmen who may play --- We've got an idea. I think some of the positions are obvious, some of the line play doesn't look quite as obvious to the naked eye. But we've got a pretty good idea.
Who starts at free safety --- Don't know exactly who is going to start yet, but they are both going to play. Not be a matter of playing time. They are both in in nickel together, so they are both doing a nice job.
On the end of camp --- It was great. I thought we were really efficient this camp and part of that was our staff continuity. We didn't lose one coach so we were efficient in meetings and on the field --- practices were even shorter. And in turn our players knew what to expect, and the energy level that they brought day in and day out was remarkable. I was really really impressed with the energy they have continued to bring. We are on our 24th practice of training camp and they might have had more energy than any other practice. I was impressed with them.
Getting excited for BYU --- There is something to be said about looking at an opponent and this is why we are running this play and why we are calling this defense and so I think they are anxious for that to get started, as well. We dabbled with it the last couple of days with some service teams periods, but we'll crank it up Monday with that.
On dealing with the altitude - I don't think so. I think altitude becomes an issue when you make it an issue. I think some of the biggest mistakes people make are trying to go up early and get acclimated to the altitude. Those are the teams that in my opinion when we were playing suffered the worst, kind of caught in limbo. We are going to go play. We are a deep football team, we've got plenty of depth on offense, defense and special teams and generally in first games, the first few games of the year you play a lot of players so that's going to bet the plan anyway.
The one big thing with the altitude, need to be prepared for is punts, kickoffs, the ball is going to travel an extra 5-7 yards. And the passing game a little bit, the quarterbacks on Friday we are going to throw some deep balls because the ball is going to carry a little bit more.
On punting being easier at altitude - But you don't want to outkick your coverage so you've got to make sure you get plenty of height on the ball and not just drive it because you can get big punt returns there if you don't get enough height and hang time. Just got to make sure we are getting our punts on Friday to make sure what we are working with for specific guys. The rest of us those guys will be having a good time.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Saturday Practice Report
Saturday's practice signaled the end of fall camp, and when the three horns blew, the whole team erupted in cheers, and the people that were in attendance applauded. It's officially the end of Camp Sark!
For the most part it was a by-the-numbers workout, with the team in shells and shorts. I took some very unofficial stats during the final team period. Jake Locker was 4-10 with one interception - a pass tipped by Nate Williams and intercepted by Will Shamburger. Keith Price was 5-8 for 42 yards and Nick Montana was 3-3 for 30 yards. The 12 completions went to 10 different players: Jermaine Kearse and Johri Fogerson each had two catches, Kearse for 15 yards and Fogerson for 23. Jesse Callier 1-25; William Chandler 1-20; Chris Polk 1-20; James Johnson 1-15; Michael Hartvigson 1-10; Devin Aguilar 1-7; Kevin Smith 1-6.
Steve Sarkisian said after practice that all the potential starters that had been hurt during the week (Senio Kelemete, James Johnson, Cort Dennison) were all fine, and they all did play during the final team period. Also, Everrette Thompson continued to work out and it's looking good for the junior DE to probably earn a starting nod at BYU a week from today.
Sarkisian did add that if there is a contributor that may not be ready for the BYU game, it's DE Kalani Aldrich. Brandon Huppert also sat out Saturday's practice. Freshmen Joey Deritis and Jamaal Kearse wore red during the two-hour workout.
There are some position battles that are still definitely being worked out. Sark said after practice that he's not sure who will start at the safety position opposite Nate Williams, but both Will Shamburger and Nate Fellner will play a lot against BYU - especially since defenses traditionally use more nickel, dime and penny packages against the pass-oriented Cougars. The loss of Harvey Unga probably means BYU will have even more of a threat in the passing game from their backfield, so the chances Shamburger and Fellner see the field at the same time are very good.
On the offensive line, Greg Christine has been pretty much a constant at the right guard spot, so expect him to be named the starter there for BYU, beating out Mykenna Ikehara and Colin Porter. I'll have my prediction for what Sark's depth chart will look like a little later today.
High school quarterback Brett Hundley from Arizona is expected to be at Washington his weekend, but he was not seen at practice. He's considered by many to be the third piece of an August recruiting 'trifecta' for Sarkisian and the Huskies; UW has already received verbal commitments from the top-two players in the state - Gig Harbor TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Skyline WR Kasen Williams. Seferian-Jenkins announced to a packed Gig Harbor Yacht club on the 16th, and Williams did the same to a couple thousand friends, family members and teammates during a private Skyline family barbecue Friday night.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Greg Christine Thursday AM Quotes
On the OL this year - "I think we're here just to work hard. We know that what we have in our backfield isn't going to happen unless we play the way we're supposed to play. So I think we've taken that role and coach Cozzetto has helped bring that role to us and we're just going to take it and run with it. And I'm just going to try and fill my role within the larger picture. They just want to put the best players in positions to make plays, so if they think that's center for me - fine. And if that's guard, even better. It doesn't matter to me."
On a typical off-season day for him - "Off-season we were up in the morning working out. Then I would work, and then I would come back and we did our own practices. Then I would go to the gym and work out again. Then I would come home, eat and then go to sleep and wake up and do it all again."
On earning a scholarship - "I think aside from the scholarship, the work ethic is really what gets you a scholarship. Everybody on the team who has a good work ethic, it speaks a bunch about their character more than getting a scholarship. Even if you aren't on scholarship but you are busting your butt every day in practice, I can respect you a million times more than a scholarship player who is not busting their butt."
On the freshmen OL - "I think they are doing great, all the freshmen are doing great. Being a freshman, coming in - it's a lot coming at you in a couple of days, but I think every freshman has excelled greatly from when they got here, the first day of watching them on film, to now. They understand what's going on and they are getting a better understanding of how we play football here."
On the one-on-ones with the DL and the competition - "It's just more competitive, we just know each other more. We know how to get under each other's skin and make it a little more personal - which is exciting. It just brings out the best in you. I think that the competition has made us raise our game when we come out and practice. If we're practicing at such a high level, hopefully the games will become easier."
On taking it personal during the 1-1's - "What happens on the field, stays on the field. Once we go in the locker room, we're laughing, joking, singing with each other - it doesn't matter. If it's on the field, I'm mad at you on the field, but once I go up that tunnel, it's all over. I leave it on the field. This is my job, but that's my family in the locker room. But there are people that know how to push your buttons, for sure. The way they do things, you're like 'I do not like that!' But all you do is try to beat them, beat them in whatever drill it is - if it's pass rush, make sure you beat them in pass rush, or coming off the ball and driving them downfield."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Steve Sarkisian Thursday AM Quotes
On Cort Dennison - "He's not a concern for the game. I just want to get him healthy. The last thing I want as we're heading into the first game of the year is injuries lingering. We should be 100 percent, not lingering like we've played five games already."
On any injury concerns - "James Johnson is a concern. He hasn't practiced in two weeks. This has gone on a lot longer than we anticipated. He's still unable to practice, and my concern is him trying to come back next week and the timing and the rhythm being off. I'm concerned about it, no doubt. It's just a regular ankle sprain."
On today being the last day of camp - "We technically break camp Saturday, but with our walk-through this afternoon and our mock game tomorrow and that's kind of the end of camp. And then Saturday will be a good practice with all BYU stuff."
On where he hoped they'd be right now - "I love where we are at. I love our kicking game. We are so much further along than where we were last year at this time. I think the comfort level with Will punting and with Erik kicking; the comfort level of our schemes on special teams with what we're doing and contingency planning and for injuries and depth-wise, I think we're such a better football team on special teams, and I'm excited about it. On defense, to see our guys fly around and play…we're playing faster football. And part of that is, we're almost appearing faster than we really are, because our knowledge of the defense is so much better in year two than in year one, and that's a credit to Nick and the staff for getting that done. I love where they are at. And offensively, it's just continuity…it's Jake's comfort level with the system, it's his continuity with the receivers; Chris Polk's comfort level with the schemes and understanding all of it; the depth along the offensive line. All in all, I like our football team and where we are at. I think we've accomplished a lot in three week's of time. Now it's time to start game planning."
On his game day role - "It'll remain the same. I'll be in touch with the defense, I'll be in touch with the special teams and I'll know the game plans in all the phases, but I'll call the plays offensively and I'll make the tough decisions on fourth down whether to go for it or not, things of that nature. As we touched on it early in the year last year, something I recognized right away…when you want to go for it on fourth down as an offensive coordinator you always want to go for it. The Head Coach will tell you if you are punting it or if you're going for it. When you are wearing two hats in that capacity as the play-caller and the head coach, you just think wisely. That dawned on me during the first game, that kind of getting twisted and pulled…but after that the thought process became a little clearer and I prepared for it better, I think."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Nick Holt Thursday AM Quotes
On the MLB spot --- Cort will be fine, just giving him a little day off to get it feeling good again. What's happened is some of the younger kids such as Garret Gilliland and Tim Tucker have gotten a bunch of reps and it's only accelerated their chance to play and to help us out, so in a sense it's a bad thing that Cort is hurt but it has helped create a little more depth a little sooner, so in the long run it will be good.
On Gilliland --- Garret is a really good athlete, a very intelligent football player and just needs a few more reps and he will have a bright future for us. Mentally he's a little worn down like all the freshmen but he's done a nice job.
On the defense now compared to a year ago --- Well, I think we know our defense a lot better than last year because we have been doing the same stuff now for over a year. The older kids are all a lot better so I feel good about that. We need some of these freshmen to come along, especially on special teams. But as a whole we are better now than we were a year ago at this time heading into the opener and hopefully it will show in our first couple games.
On getting a pass rush off the edge --- We've gotten better. To have good edge rushers you've got to have really fast guys and we are trying to develop that, or you've got to bring other guys to facilitate that. But I think our D-line as a whole has done a good job of their pass rush and we just keep developing. Talia the last week has had really nice practices and is starting to show up so I'm kind of proud of him.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Johnny Nansen Thursday AM Quotes
On the defensive line hierarchy - "The lineup you see right now, without Cameron - who is still dealing with a little bit of a sore ankle - I think we've got it in place with Talia and 'Meda and Cameron and also Everrette coming back, that would be our lineup right there to start off. We'll rotate the other guys, like Semisi and Chris Robinson at nose - that would be the rotation we would have. And Josh Shirley at the end."
On Everrette Thompson - "I think Everrette is a week away, but he'll be ready by game time. I think you can see it, he's starting to come back strength-wise and conditioning-wise, he's starting to come back. The last couple of days, he's taken most of the reps."
On having to limit his reps against BYU - "I think that's normal for d-line; you have to rotate guys in and out. But I think Everrette is ready. Other than conditioning-wise, physically he is ready."
On Everrette being the heart and soul of the DL - "Everrette is sort of like Daniel (Te'o-Nesheim). He's got that attitude that kids love, especially the young kids. He's a quiet leader. He leads by example, but when he says something they all kind of listen, because that means he's either pissed off or he's trying to get guys motivated to go. He's that kind of a leader, and Daniel was the same way."
On who has made the biggest strides on the DL - "I think Talia (Crichton). "He's had a great camp so far. It's unbelievable what a year can do for the kid. He had a great off-season and now in camp he's really been the guy that has been stepping up."
On Josh Shirley and having to make up for lost time - "He's a month behind because of those other kids here and him coming in and trying to get in good shape and trying to learn the system in two weeks. That's what he's struggled with. He's learning to play a position. He was more of a standup linebacker in high school. Now he's learning to put his hand down. There's a lot of things going on, especially in the college game, and you have to be a fast learner. We don't have a lot of time to get guys ready. We have a short period of time. He'll get there, probably by the middle of the season, but you're absolutely right; he's a little bit behind. But he's smart enough that I think Josh will pick it up pretty soon."
On the other two frosh and whether or not they will play - "Maybe Hauoli. Hauoli's more advanced. The other guy, he's really been surprising. You look at the comparison between him and Talia a year ago, Hauoli is way more advanced than Talia a year ago. I think you'll see Hauoli play more for us this year. Andrew, on the other hand, he'll probably need a year to redshirt. We'll probably have to make a decision on that either today or tomorrow and find out exactly who that guy is, because with so much depth we could use him on service and then a year from now we'll get him when De'Shon (Matthews) is done."
On Alameda Ta'amu and his breakthrough - "Obviously losing that much weight and seeing the difference in the kid - I think he's self motivated and he finally sees the light…if I'm serious I can be a very dominant nose guard in the conference. I think he's very determined this year - and not only on the football field, but also off the field with the young kids and also in the classroom. He's picking things up. He's a quiet leader, but he's one of those other guys that's having a great camp."
On what Husky fans will see from the DL this year they didn't see a year ago - "I think you're going to see a much faster group, a more productive group, and most definitely will be more dominant inside with our tackles. When you add the two guys in there - that's 600-plus pounds in there that people haven't really seen. Those are the things I'm seeing. And I also think we're going to be more productive with our pass rush too, with our two outside guys."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Thursday Practice Notes
Once again James Johnson was held out, meaning his chances for traveling for BYU have become questionable, according to coach Sarkisian after practice. At this time, he's the only potential starter that's in doubt, despite the fact that Cort Dennison didn't play. Brandon Huppert was not there at all, and Kalani Aldrich continues to sit out. Senio Kelemete played in the all the team work, which was his first extended work of the week. That bodes well for the junior left tackle to be fully fit by the time UW travels to BYU in a week.
Cameron Elisara and Alameda Ta'amu got some rest in some drills, but played in others. Semisi Tokolahi and Chris Robinson And when the No. 1 defense was used, Tim Tucker was at MIK and Nate Fellner continued to play alongside Nate Williams at safety.
Sarkisian confirmed that this afternoon's practice will simulate a normal Friday workout, so it's been completely closed. They will then go to a hotel and go through their normal road routine, and then presumably go through what they expect to happen at BYU on Friday - which is also a completely closed practice.
The one interesting period came at the end, when both Jake Locker and Keith Price had a chance to run a two-minute drill from their own 30 with 2:12 left on the clock. Locker, going up against a scout defense, spearheaded an 11-play drive that culminated in a Chris Polk 1-yard run with 42 seconds left. The drive also included a 7-yard completion from Locker to Jermaine Kearse on a 4th and 5.
Price had to go up against the No. 1 defense, and he put together two quick first downs, but then the drive stalled at the defense's 40-yard line, where Nate Williams came up to the line and stuffed a pass from Price to William Chandler to end the series.
Williams had a nice day or work, including a pick earlier off of Nate Montana.
Also of note - the ongoing battles that is the OL v Josh Shirley continued in earnest. Shirley took on Erik Kohler during the one-on-ones, eventually ripping Kohler's helmet off. It was a while before Shirley got back in the mix, this time going up against Michael Criste, who basically stonewalled the frosh DE.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Yogi Roth Wednesday Observations
On what he's seen at UW - "I've seen a lot. First I've seen a staff whose energy is off the charts. Their energy level is ridiculous. What I've seen out of the players is that they love to practice: Early practice, late practice, mid-day practice, in meetings, out of meetings, staff meetings, meeting with players one-on-one - they all love to practice. I don't care of it's the offensive linemen, or if it's Jake Locker. They are all into it mentally. This far into camp, you're tired. You're exhausted, you're over it a little bit, but these guys bring it. They bring it every day, and that's very impressive."
On changes in Sarkisian and Holt from USC to now - "They change all the time. I think the commonality is that they bring the juice every day. They bring energy. As a coaching staff, they are so focused day to day on what they want to accomplish. For Sark, from year one to year two…you always talk about players making a big jump…probably also as a coach. I don't think you have to…his first year you want to know everything that's going on. You don't want to say micro-manage, but you're so involved, whereas this year he's probably just in a more relaxed state. He's been through it once, just like any other coach would normally go through it."
On how UW stacks up with the rest of the talent he's seen this summer - "They stack up really well. I've been going around the country looking at quarterbacks specifically, but also the teams as well - from Missouri to Miami to here. And when you look at this squad - you've got the number-one quarterback in the conference and you have the number-one running back in the conference. At 230 pounds, just look at the way Chris Polk launches himself into defenders. This fall I think he's going to be a physical force that I don't think a lot of teams are used to seeing in this conference at running back.
The biggest thing about this team is - they are solid all the way across the board. Those two players are, obviously in my opinion, elite players. Everywhere else they are good. In the past, they weren't. They were bad in some areas. So I don't think they are going to get overmatched in some areas. The biggest challenge will come in week one when you'll find out about this team. When they get hit in the mouth, what are they going to do? Are they going to hope they do well? Or are they going to know they are going to do well? That's going to be the biggest defining moment for me watching this squad. Are they over the hump? Are they expecting to win? Or are they hoping that a few things go their way - and that's going to be the telling thing. They aren't that much better than anyone else…but they aren't worse than anyone else. They are consistently good at every position. So how do they stack up when someone is equally as good? Do they overpower people with their will? Schematically, I think they have a great advantage with the staff here, but I think that's going to be the most fun to see."
On Chris Polk being the best RB in the Pac-10 - "I do, and here's why. He was also a receiver when he played in high school, so he can run routes and he can catch balls out of the backfield. When you look at him, he's constantly falling forward. He's catching the football, going for it on swing passes. When he's running through gaps he sets up his blocks really well in his zone running scheme. He stretches the ball, and by that I mean he runs wide and then puts his foot in the ground and cuts back and finds the lane with great vision. He's tough, he's physical. Those other players, they are great: Quizz Rodgers, he's a Heisman Trophy candidate. But if you look at players at this level and who is going to be great at the next level, I think you look at Chris Polk with his size, speed and athleticism - and the fact that he's healthy - and look out with him in this zone running attack."
On Jake Locker - "I just did something with College Football Live about him. The biggest thing I've noticed is that last year, he was reacting as an athlete. Right now, he's reacting as a quarterback. You have to remember, he was never taught how to play the position; he was never taught how to take a seven-step drop. Now, he's understanding the position. When you look at his completion percentage before Sark got here, he averaged 50 percent; at this camp he's at 65 percent. It's a telling stat. He's finally not just saying that he's got the play from coach Nuss and Sark and here's the play, and there's a 1-high or 2-high safety and I'm going to almost pre-determine what I'm going to do with the football…that's what he did last year and somewhat in the spring. Now it's…I've got the play, linebacker leverage is here, I'm expecting this to happen…let's go play ball. I think he's really trusting his eyes. And when you are looking at the guy that's projected to be the number-one player taken in the draft, he's almost twice as good as he was last year because of his fluidity in the position. Look out!"
On BYU being a signature game - "It's as big as the first game is - and it's huge. You are obviously excited about it, but you can't make more about it. If you lose, you still have to play week two and Syracuse. It's not like the season is over. But you are going to find out about this team and find out about their growth. BYU is a physical team; they have a lot of grown men there because they have a lot of older guys there that have gone on mission. I don't think they are better athletes by any stretch. Schematically they are very well coached. But when you look at U-Dub, I think these guys are itchy. If they carry over what they did against Cal - and I watched it last night - and where they came off from a tempo standpoint and a rhythmic standpoint offensively and the defense flying to the football…but it's week one and you know there's going to be mistakes and guys are going to jump offsides and there's going to be some stupid penalties…but if they don't turn the football over, I expect them to go out there and play some solid, fundamental football."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Wednesday Practice Notes
There were 21 '89'ers' from the Skyline youth football program at Husky Stadium on a beautiful Wednesday evening, and they were happy to indulge me while I took a quick poll: How many of them knew who Kasen Williams was? Nine raised their hands (I suspect they will all know who he is in a couple of days); eight said that he's going to pick Washington for his college choice. The one lone holdout? He thinks Kasen is going to Texas.
They may not know about the star of their Spartans varsity team, but when Jake Locker came over to say hello, they all knew who the senior quarterback of the Washington Huskies is. Former Skyline OL Cody Habben also went over to say hello, as well as a few of the other offensive linemen. It was a day where the team went full pads and focused mostly on service team work, as this was the first day where the freshmen and the walk-ons started to work into their roles of scouting for the week's opponent.
That meant plenty of team work. During the team period, Jake Locker was unofficially 4-7 for 94 yards; Keith Price was 2-5 for 15 yards and Nick Montana was 3-5 for 60 yards. The freshman from southern California must've known his family was in the stands, as he stepped up his play - especially near the end of the full team period when he connected twice with freshman wideout Kevin Smith for gains of 20 and 25 yards.
Johri Fogerson was the other player that caught multiple passes - two for 55 yards.
Even though James Johnson was padded up for practice Wednesday, he didn't participate. He hasn't caught a pass live since Friday night, and he seems to be in danger of not making it back for BYU if he can't get some practice time in. The only player I saw that wasn't in pads Wednesday was Kalani Aldrich, and Sarkisian said the sophomore continues to be in one practice and out another as he gets his knee strong for Pac-10 play. Everrette Thompson continued to work with the ones, and the junior looks to be getting fitter and fitter for BYU, which is 10 days away. The Kennedy grad looked to have gotten a 'sack' during the team period, but it was tough to tell if he was the one that got to Locker first.
Linebacker Brandon Huppert wasn't spotted at practice, and Sarkisian said he's still battling some knee issues that keep popping up after the senior walk-on tore his ACL in the Huskies' 16-13 win over USC.
With Huppert out and Cort Dennison limited with knee concerns of his own, freshman Garret Gilliland worked with the ones during both the 9-7 period and team period. Tim Tucker and Victor Burnett were also rolled in to handle the MIK duties. Senio Kelemete's right ankle was wrapped up tight and he participated in all the individual work, but Erik Kohler was the left tackle the coaches used when it came time to the team periods. He took one rep during the one-on-ones.
Semisi Tokolahi came in with Alameda Ta'amu during the 9-7 team period, but then Cameron Elisara looked great during the one-on-ones. Even though the senior's right ankle appeared to be heavily taped, that didn't stop him from getting his work done when needed.
With Kelemete in, that meant moving Drew Schaefer back to center and Greg Christine to right guard. Now it just looks like they are putting Kohler in at left tackle and leaving the rest of the OL as is: Tolar, Schaefer, Christine and Habben. The two OL when Kelemete was with the ones was Kohler, Wood, Ikehara, Porter and Kanczugowski. At the DE's, Thompson and Crichton were the ones, followed by Jamora and Matthews. The next left tackle in line after Kelemete and Kohler looked to be Skyler Fancher, followed by Micah Hatchie.
During the team periods, Will Shamburger would normally be the safety opposite Nate Williams, but Wednesday it was Nate Fellner. Whoever ends up winning that job, expect the other one to also see considerable playing time, as that battle has been strong all the way through camp.
They didn't do much in the way of special teams, but Erik Folk was 4-4 on his tries, including one from 48 yards that never seemed to fly higher than about 20 feet off the ground.
Notes: In attendance - Joe and Jennifer Montana; Jordan Reffett; Jim Lambright; the Mendiola sisters (from UW hoops fame); Yogi Roth.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Wednesday Jermaine Kearse Quotes
On his battles with Trufant staring during Desmond's recruiting trip - "It was that basketball game, the one with the little ones, at Jillians. I think I won, but he might try and tell you different, but I think I definitely got him."
On how that has raised his game - "Tru is definitely a very good corner, he's very competitive. He pushes me, and whether he's a year younger than me, he's one of the top corners in the Pac-10, I believe. The sky is the limit for him, and his game helps me raise my game, and our competitiveness rubs off on others. We compete so hard and they see that and they do the same thing."
On how it's rubbed off on others around him - "They see how hard we compete with each other, and they go out and try and do the same thing. Whether it's with Quinton Richardson or with Tony Gobern, we always compete and we always go out and try and get the win."
On if he's seen that the energy they've created has moved toward the whole team - "The offense and defense are constantly going at it. One day the offense will win, the other day the defense wins. You never know who is going to win that day, and whoever brings it, it shows. We just try and bring that competitiveness out here and work it toward the BYU week."
On his work ethic - "I wake up, eat breakfast, go lifting, go to workout, start in the Dempsey and then go into the weight room and then sometimes have conditioning there and then go to school. That's pretty much it."
On his biggest goal for BYU - "Come out with the win. Get that first road win. That's our number-one goal."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Wednesday Desmond Trufant Quotes
On his work ethic - "Off-season, I did a lot. I missed all of spring ball, so I was playing catchup. Me and James Johnson, Will Shamburger and Keith Price, we would be out here doing one-on-ones every day almost, during the summer just trying to get ready for the fall. I'd be at the park, backpedaling. I would have my cousins come out and run routes with me - just doing anything to get ready for camp. Me and my brothers, we could go out and backpedal every now and then, doing anything we can to get an edge."
On the ethic being second-nature to him because of his upbringing - "Yeah, definitely. I've seen them work hard my whole life. I've seen my brother go to a Super Bowl and Pro Bowls and I've seen the work ethic he had and it rubbed off on me. It's a blessing in the end to have someone put that in me. And just growing up, I've always been competitive, and it's just paying off now."
On the competitiveness between him and Jermaine Kearse - "We never played against each other, but I'd always heard about him and my friends would tell me that he would be the one routing me up if we ever played against each other. Once I got here I knew he was one of the better receivers here, so it's always been a battle between me and him."
On the two gravitating toward battling with each other - "It started ever since my recruiting trip, we've always been battling - whether it's been video games, whether it's anything - basketball, anything - we're always competing with each other. This summer, we really worked hard and we're ready to make our stamp this year."
On seeing that competitiveness rub off on the other players - "It's a trickle-down effect. When somebody sees us competing at that level, everybody wants to compete at that level too. We just try and set examples for our position group and for the team. Our competitive spirit rubs off on everybody."
On where the team is from a year ago - "The scheme - the offense knows the offense and the defense knows the defense - so everybody is playing twice as fast as they were last year. Now we're just focusing on technical things and the little things. The games we lost, we're focusing on those little things this year to help us win those games. But it's night and day from last year; the tempo of practices is so fast now and we don't really realize how fast we're going. But we're really out here flying."
On getting over the hump and getting that signature road win - "We need to band together. Last year we lost a couple of games at the end and it sticks with us and to be a championship contender you have to be a strong road team. And I think that it going to help going to BYU for the first game. It's going to set a mark for our season, pretty much. It's always harder to play on the road, but hard is good. The way we're practicing the game is going to come that much easier to us. I think we're ready."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Wednesday Steve Sarkisian Quotes
On whether Keith Price is the backup - "Uh, I don't know that. It was designed that way yesterday and part of today. Today was the first day of service day, where we serviced the offense and the defense. The first day of service day, the freshmen all have to be service guys, so that's why Nick was down there the entire time and Keith was up. But we'll make a decision for sure internally here by Saturday and whether or not we release that remains to be seen."
On the QBs play today - "I thought all three quarterbacks played really well today. Not just to single out Keith I thought Jake did some really nice things, Jake did some really nice things, and Keith did. They threw the ball, and they've been throwing the ball for the last week at a very high level.''
On Price and working with the ones Tuesday night - "One thing I learned and what I appreciated and liked about it is for as kind of as hostile an environment as we can make it in practice with the music playing and the players getting after it at the end to drive them down there and score that touchdown showed me a lot about just his mental toughness he was able to hang in there and execute the offense at a critical moment of practice.''
On Jake getting last night off - "That was his kind of scheduled day off.''
On freshmen who might play - "We have a pretty good idea. Got to watch the game, right?''
Does he have a number? "Not off the top of my head, no.''
On Cort and whether he suffered a setback - "No, we wanted to get him moving around some just because when you kind of sprain your knee and you stand around on it, it can get tight. We wanted to move him around but not overdo it so he got moved around and then we just wanted to make sure he got iced up and felt good about it. We'll well work him back into it just want to make sure come Monday we are a healthy football team.''
What are the health issues - "Senio still with his ankle is a health issue because he can't go every snap of practice. Obviously, Cort because he can't go every snap of practice. James Johnson is a real concern of mine right now. He hasn't practiced in nearly two weeks, it's concerning to me. Everrette is going to be a concern until we really play, but he is doing everything we really asked him to do up to this point. He's performing for us. Kalani is still kind of day on day off mentality so he is still somewhat of a concern still. But outside of that I think we are pretty healthy. The beauty of it, knock on wood, we are not dealing with pulled hamstrings or quads or things of that nature that could potentially take months of time. We are dealing with twists and sprains that I think can be healed here by the beginning of next week.''
On who is filling in at MLB - "Garret Gilliland, he looks good. And Tim Tucker has really stepped his game there at that position as well. I like both of those two guys, and that's kind of where it's laying right now. Victor (Burnett) is in there, the other two guys are just playing a little faster. Their knowledge of the defense I think is somewhat a little ahead of his."
On Brandon Huppert: "Huppert's knee had a little setback it swelled up on him so we are going to have to lay off the gas on him for a little bit until he can get back. We've got to monitor that swelling exactly where it is coming the next week or even he following weeks.''
Worries about James being out:? "We're fortunate that we've got an extremely deep receiving corps. When you look at Jermaine (Kearse) and Devin (Aguilar) and D'Andre (Goodwin), Cody Bruns, Jordan Polk, Kevin Smith --- we are six deep without even thinking he could do it or he couldn't do it. So we feel really good about it. The beauty of all those guys too is they are all very smart and can play at numerous positions so not just locked into one position.''
Posted by Scott Eklund
Tuesday Evening Practice Notes
-- It was a beautiful evening for a practice and the Huskies went through a brisk two-hour workout under the lights.
-- Again, lots of special teams work today, including coverage units (kickoff) and return (kickoff) team as well.
-- Washington did a lot of situational stuff including third down work.
-- QB Jake Locker did very little today and Sarkisian confirmed to us that he was just giving him a rest. WR James Johnson and LB Cort Dennison were the only two I saw actually sitting out, although both were in their shells. Johnson worked out on the side and you could tell he thought the sideline workouts were tougher than actually practicing.
-- LT Senio Kelemete did some individual work and install work, but was still limping a bit, so the coaches are continuing to be cautious with him.
-- In his place, QB Keith Price took all the snaps with the first unit and had a solid night. Price made a couple of really nice throws, but had them dropped by D'Andre Goodwin and Johri Fogerson. Goodwin's was under duress from CB Vonzell McDowell on the play, but he should have been able to bring it in.
-- Taz Stevenson had a very good practice and was around the ball a lot. On a throw from Nick Montana to Michael Hartvigson, Stevenson came up and would have decleated the freshman tight end, but since the team was in shells, the just gave him a good pop.
-- Nate Williams was particularly on fire tonight. He picked off a pass that was intended for D'Andre Goodwin and then was tackled. As he got up, there were some words exchanged between some people on the sidelines, but he was definitely fired up. Then, on a short pass to Jordan Polk, Williams was at it again and roughed Polk up a little before letting him go when the whistle blew, but that wasn't soon enough for the junior wideout and there was some pushing and shoving that ensued before cooler heads prevailed.
-- There was some mixing and matching tonight with different units, but here's a breakdown of what it looks like the starters and backups are shaping up to be...
LT - Kelemete, Kohler
LG - Tolar, Wood
C - Schaefer, Christine
RG - Christine, Ikehara
RT - Habben, Riva (although Fancher or Kohler may actually be the true backup here)
TE - Izbicki, Hartvigson
WR - Kearse, Bruns
WR - Aguilar, Goodwin
WR - Johnson (injured), Polk
FB - Sylvester, Boyce or Fogerson (Zach)
RB - Polk, Fogerson (Johri), Callier, Bronson
QB - Locker, Price, Montana
DE - Thompson or Matthews, Jamora
DT - Ta'amu, Tokolahi
DT - Elisara, Potoa'e
DE - Crichton, Aldrich
SAM/LEO - Aiyewa, Houston
MIK- Dennison (injured), Gilliland or Tucker
WIL - Foster, Houston or Wallace
CB - Trufant, McDowell
CB - Richardson, Long or Ducre
SS - Williams, Parker
FS - Fellner or Shamburger
Wednesday's afternoon practice and Thursday's morning practice are the last two the general public can attend, so if you are planning to go...make sure you get down there for them.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Brandon Huppert (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Tuesday AM Brandon Huppert Quotes
On being the most experienced linebacker in the corps - "I have a good understanding of the defense. I pretty much know all three positions and I basically just want to take advantage of my opportunities when they are there and find a role, whatever that may be. Whether that means special teams or playing defense…I just want to help the team in any way I can."
On how earning a scholarship validated his play - "It's nice. It's a reaffirmation that I'm doing everything I should be doing, and I'm doing it right, and that my hard work is paying off."
On his health - "My knee, it's a little sore, but I'm working my way through it. It's kind of expected to be, coming off an ACL injury like mine."
On when it happened - "It was during the USC game. It was the last time we punted in the game, and I was just running down in coverage. I broke down, and someone rolled up into my knees and my foot stuck."
On the rehab - "It's been a little faster than expected. Probably the hardest thing has been mentally trusting everything. Physically it's been very good, but just mentally just getting all the rust off and trusting it 100 percent."
On where he is physically from 1 to 100 percent - "It's hard to tell, but it's close. I'm close to where I should be."
On the LB corps in general - "I think the guys, coming into this season and having a whole year to learn…we've got a better understanding. Last year we had one spring before the season to learn it, whereas this year and all the guys that have been playing that have been in the program, it's a big advantage to know the ins and outs of the position and not just having to learn it so fast and everything."
On his skill set and the MIK position - "At the MIK position you have to be a natural leader and get the defense lined up and play the run really strong and just get everybody going in the right direction."
On the defense having a chip on their shoulder - "I don't think there's a chip on their shoulder as much as everybody just wants to do their job and help out any way they can. We're a team and it's a team sport and it doesn't really matter who gets the glory as long as there's a W at the end of the day."
On being further ahead than last year - "I feel guys have found their roles and have worked really hard. There's a chance that we could be a really solid defense this year."
On the defense having goals - "Not really numbers. We just want to go out and play hard. That's the biggest thing. Effort first, and get our assignments down and just be solid."
On setting personal goals - "I just want to contribute, any way I can. That's my personal goal. Just get there and contribute any way I can, whether it's punt team, kickoff, of if my number is called, go in there and play linebacker."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Dan Cozzetto (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Tuesday AM Dan Cozzetto Quotes
On what he saw from Saturday's scrimmage - "We were up and down, we weren't real consistent. We didn't play with the tempo I thought we would play with. We had that practice the night before, on Friday, where we went about 70 hard plays, and we talked about it coming back out here - you have to do it, day after day - and so you have to be ready to come back out and do it. And we didn't do it as well as we could have played. I felt like we were going through the motions, weren't playing with a high intensity that we expect at this program on how we practice. It was brought to their attention. You take into consideration that they've been in camp, but they've got to fight through those things. We have to get out of our comfort zone, guys. This is like going in and it's the fourth quarter again. You've got to get out of it and you've got to play like you've started the game. There was a lot of learning that was brought to us in terms of how we performed on Saturday. We ran the ball decently; there was some explosive plays and there was a lot of yardage, but as far as the standard that we have set for this offense, we've got to become more consistent."
On bringing all the freshmen along - "It always is a big transition when you come from high school to college, and then from college to the next level - just the speed of the game and the intensity of the game, the volume…it just plays a part. And they break down a little bit in camp because they are tired and all that, and all of a sudden they let their body start talking to their mind…so it's just a matter of conditioning and getting them in mental condition and teaching them that this game has very little margin for error. It's not like you can false step and all of a sudden you'll be alright. It's not going to happen here. You have to make sure that everything is right every time when you take that snap."
On pad level - "We're always talking about pad level. We did a little exercise yesterday, kind of old-school stuff, putting them on those boards and letting them go one-on-one with the d-line…which constitutes, you're going to get your pad level down or you're going to get turned over on your back. And it's been a good group of kids…they do what you tell 'em to do. You're going to get what you coach, so if you're coaching pad level and you're coaching speed, and you are consistent with it, they are going to start understanding what they have to do."
On how you teach pad level - "You never stop teaching it. Whether it's pass blocking and you're standing up and guys want to get low on you and rush you and they are closing the pocket on the quarterback - we have to work on staying down. We are constantly talking about it. We practice it in our individual periods…constantly, constantly talking about getting your pads down and getting off. The bottom line from the last scrimmage that is so consistent with offensive and defensive fronts…it's all about get off. If you don't get off, nothing good is going to happen. If he beats him off the ball or you beat him off the ball…it's going to benefit the offense if you can beat that defensive lineman off the ball. If you aren't coming off when you're supposed to come off and you're not playing with a low pad level, you are going to be embarrassed. Nothing good is going to happen."
On Erik Kohler and playing with the ones - "Erik…we knew Erik was something special coming out of high school, but we didn't know how special he was. He's still got to finish camp. He's going to play in games, and you'll see if you were right. But I agree with coach (Sarkisian). With all the offensive linemen I've coached over the years, there's only one that played as a freshman, and that was Marvel Smith. But Erik has a maturity about him in his game that he feels comfortable. He's not totally overwhelmed at the volume or the speed of the game. He's got a lot of special things about him as a football player, being this young."
On the toll in camp being more physical or mental - "Both. As a coach, someone told me not to forget what it's like to be a player. We're in camp and they've been each other and they've been hitting one another for a while. You're in camp for one reason; as you're going into the season, you're conditioned and trained to react to being tired, and you have to constantly learn how to play one at a time. One snap at a time, that's all you can do. We're making great strides toward this, and I think if these kids continue to do what Sark asks them to do, we're going to have a good football team."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Cody Bruns (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Tuesday AM Practice Notes
Team was in helmets, shells and shorts, so no full contact work this morning. A lot of emphasis on red zone work, with the results being a mixed bag.
The QB's and WR's came out looking really sharp. I noticed Monday they were having trouble out of the gate completing routes against air, but that same drill this morning looked almost like the Seahawks were running it - very crisp, every pass on the money and completed.
Cody Bruns looked like the receiver of choice this morning, catching a few very nice passes, especially when working with Nick Montana. On the defensive side of the ball, Will Shamburger made the play of the practice - a 50/50 ball with D'Andre Goodwin that he was able to battle and rip the ball out of Goodwin's hands at the goal line. The rest of the defense was very jacked to see Shamburger come up with the ball.
James Johnson continues to work on the side, walking the stairs and doing some rehab on his ankle. Kalani Aldrich was on the stationary bike early, and even though Senio Kelemete did all the individual work, the coaches still kept him out of the team drills. Erik Kohler continues to take the reps at LT with the ones.
Cort Dennison was also held out again this morning, and in a bit of a twist freshman Garret Gilliland was inserted with the ones to start, but he ended up rotating with Brandon Huppert, Tim Tucker and Victor Burnett.
Everrette Thompson worked against this AM, opposite Talia Crichton. It will be interesting to see if Thompson plays in the evening, or is held out. He's played in a few practices in a row and doesn't appear any the worse for wear, which is a good sign.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Steve Sarkisian (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Tuesday AM Steve Sarkisian Quotes
On Cort Dennison: "He's fine. He wants to practice. We're the ones being preventative to get that thing healthy. He wants to go, and he can go. If we were playing today, we'd be fine."
Are there any injuries that he's feeling less optimistic about? "James (Johnson) is the one that's frustrating. It's been almost a week and a half. For a receiver, in the passing game with the timing with the quarterback, that's a little bit concerning. So hopefully we get him back here in the next couple of days."
On Senio Kelemete: "He's coming along pretty good. It's been good for Kohler to get those reps being out there. But Senio's working his way back."
MLB without Cort: "Garret was there, Victor was there, Tim Tucker was there. They're all getting reps."
Is there any meaning to Gilliland being first one out there? "No. Just giving them looks. Seeing how they look."
How's Kohler looked? "Good. He's doing some good things. For a true freshman to be playing left tackle, he's been doing some really good things. At times, it gets a little fast for him, and he makes mistakes here and there. But for a true freshman to be going with the ones is pretty impressive."
On the O-line in general: "I think it's been good. Ryan Tolar has been showing the tenacity at guard that we wanted to see. I think Drew Schaefer, to go against Alameda Ta'amu every day has been great for him. It's gotten his toughness to where it needs to be; he's obviously very bright. I like Christine and Mykenna Ikehara at guard. And Cody getting back at right tackle, he's still got to trust that he can be physical out there, but he's doing some nice things."
Cody Habben 100 percent? "Yeah, he's back, he's fine."
Greg Christine at center in scrimmage: "Uh, he did well? He made some mental mistakes that I was surprised by, kind of going the wrong way and turning the guy loose in pass protection. But all in all, he had a good scrimmage. We just can't afford those type of mistakes."
What he knows about Price now that he didn't know before camp: "That he really likes to play football. Before, he was so uptight because he was trying to understand and learn; he didn't relax and have fun playing. Now I'm seeing a guy who's having fun playing football. To me, that gives me a lot of confidence that he knows what he's doing. He's not concerned and worried; he's out there playing ball."
On Price becoming more of a veteran - "I've said it all along, that growth from year one to year two for any player is huge, and we're seeing it before our eyes with Keith. His growth and understanding of our system is huge right now."
On Will Shamburger - "Heck of a play in the end zone. Same thing - Will's just kind of carried on from what he did in spring ball. He's been impressive all the way through.
On any safety getting separation for the job opposite Nate Williams - "I don't think there's been a separation. I think Fellner's doing nice things as well. They are different players, in a sense. Nate Fellner's a downhill, hard-nosed, will put his face on you kind of guy. He still has the cover skills. Will is a runaround, can cover ground centerfield guy that is impressive that way as well. They are different players and we're going to need them both."
On experience in the LB corps - "Cort started half the year anyway for us, and Mason's ability to move around and play different positions is fine, and Victor Aiyewa's really shown up. I've been impressed with him. That move from safety to 'backer for some guys isn't easy, but he's done a nice job."
On De'Shon Matthews - "High motor. High motor. He looks more explosive, he's playing faster. That's the biggest thing that impresses me. He just looks like a faster, more explosive guy right now."
On Cody Bruns continuing to be a go-to guy - "All these guys, they are all making plays. I tell you, our wideouts are really playing right now."
On the QB's and WR's coming out strong - "I think they were excited. As a quarterback and wideout, you've got to be excited when you're in the red zone. That's where you kind of make your money, and today was a big emphasis on red zone, offense and defense - and I think the quarterbacks were excited about it and performed well."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Demetrice Martin (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Monday Demetrice Martin Quotes
On his assessment of the corners after two weeks - "We're a lot further along than we were last year, just for the simple fact of terminology, technique, scheme…these guys know what's expected of them. They know where to be, when to be there and how to get there. It's more fun to get those guys ready, to elevate them even more with football intelligence and that type of thing. You've got your one lone freshman in Greg Ducre and I'm bringing him along, and so now it's easy for those guys to see where they were, where he's at and where they are at. So the whole group is grabbing him and pulling him along, like 'C'mon, you've got to do it like this…', so it's an awesome thing. They are self-coaching themselves to coach Greg to do things right. 'This is the technique that you need to use in this situation in this coverage, in this down-and-distance'…to hear those guys talk like that to the youngster to bring him along is great, because now I know that they are sure about what their job is supposed to be."
On what he saw from Saturday's scrimmage - "I saw some good stuff. I thought it was pretty solid. We didn't give up any deep balls, and that was the first thing I always grade my guys on. We could be a little more active around the ball as far as being more aggressive tacklers. I think we were good tacklers, but we missed a couple. I'm always going to be hard on that. Overall, it was a pretty good first scrimmage, but I think we have a lot more to do, we have a lot better to get."
On anyone having a job locked down - "Not really. [Desmond] Trufant is probably our best corner that we've got, but the competition is still open. He knows somebody can come up and bite him in the butt too; that's why he doesn't want to sit out or take no reps off or anything like that. That's what I love about the kid. He knows he's probably considered the best corner we have, but he doesn't want to take a down off. He knows that somebody having two or three good plays could move them up the depth chart, and what does that say about him if he was on the sidelines?"
On Quinton Richardson coming on strong - "He's had some off the field things that's probably made that switch go on. We've had a lot of heart-to-hearts, and he understands that it's about consistency with him. He's got the typical NFL body-type, what every big-time program would want in a corner. He runs really well. He's not afraid to hit. He just has to be consistent, day-in and day-out, and that's what he's working on - and so far he's put a string of a few days together where he's been very consistent."
On Greg Ducre and redshirting him - "That's something that could be worked out, but he's going to be such a help for us on special teams I don't think that would be in his future. How well he runs, his football intelligence, his tackling abilities…he does everything great. Schematically and technique-wise he's not ready yet to be an every-down player, but you can see it in him. He reminds me a lot of Trufant when Trufant was a freshman. He wants to play. You'd have to cage him up to keep him off the field."
On some of the other corners emerging - "All those guys are doing real great. Tony Gobern - he's doing the best I've ever seen of him since I got here. Vonzell is being more consistent, Adam Long is doing his thing. Up and down the board…even Anthony Boyles is doing well now, he's put a couple days of doing things right and doing what's asked of him and showing a concentrated effort to get things done correctly. That was his drawback. Being a receiver at first, it was kind of like 'I want to play corner because I can freelance a little bit more'. Well no, not really. Now he understands what's expected of him. The whole group is good, because I'm getting great competition out of the group."
On what he'll focus on for the final week - "We have these last two days of practice and I want to see them in another scrimmage atmosphere - we've only had one scrimmage where it was full live tackle, and I gauge a lot on tackling. We didn't get a whole lot of opportunities to make tackles the first scrimmage the other day, and we missed a couple. That second scrimmage, I know guys will be ready to go and I know the coordinators will probably keep it simple so the guys can run and play…let the chips fall where they may. The cream always rises to the top."
On what having great corners means for a defense - "In layman's terms, it lets the defense play to the defensive coordinator's attitude and how he wants to call a game. It opens up the doors for him to call any defense he wants to call in his scheme or his package. That's the difference between having great corners and not-so-great corners."
On how close his corners are to getting to that point - "I'm excited. I'm very excited. I think we're right on the cusp of having a group from top to bottom where we can rotate guys and always be pretty sturdy with whatever coach Holt wants to call."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Jordan Polk (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Monday Jordan Polk Quotes
On the competition for those coveted WR spots - "It's real heavy. All you can do is come out and compete every day, catch every ball that comes you way, just compete and do the right things. And whoever just hones in on the details and does it day-in and day-out is going to play. It's already been said, so we're going to move on forward and compete every day. We're not competing against each other; we're competing against the defense. I think that's what makes this competition so good against the receivers. It's great. It's making us all better. Everybody wants to play and we'll probably all play. Who knows what's going to happen; I'm just going to come out here every day, compete and do the right things."
On doing as well during the season as he has in camp - "Just overcoming adversity. I had a little adversity during the season, and just overcoming it and being a stronger person. I think being here has made me a stronger person, and pushing through a lot of things and just competing…I think that's helped me as a person and as a player."
On how he is physically - "Coach Ivan (Lewis)…he did a great job on our off-season program. We were all tight. We all competed…we were all lifting 300 pounds, that's our max. It was great. As a whole receiving corps, we're pound-for-pound the strongest. We competed, we had fun with each other, and that's great. That's how college is supposed to be. You're supposed to compete for a spot, you shouldn't be able to be handed a spot."
On what he needs to improve on - "I just need to hone in on the details and just keep on competing. Who knows what's going to happen, but as long as we compete, go hard and hone in on the details, things are going to be alright."
On what the smaller guys can offer - "I feel like we all bring something different to the table. It's not like one person can do this and one person can do that - I feel like we're all pretty much are well-rounded, but it's just the height. Some are taller, some are smaller, but we are all really good and we all try and learn from one another's playing ability. We just compete, really. That's what we do at the end of the day. We're just catching balls and having fun doing it."
On what he brings to the table - "Everyone has their aspect, and I'm a speed guy. So I have to just take advantage of my speed and go by defenders and compete. That's all I can say; I can't say anything else but just compete. We've all been competing, and it's been fun doing it with my boys."
On the summer workouts - "The summer workouts were great because we got to bond a lot and we got to get our timing down with Jake and the other quarterbacks. It's been really a great experience, Jake coming back for his second year (with Sarkisian), and all of us receivers just competing for a spot. We're ready for BYU, and we will keep on going forward."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Jake Locker (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Monday Jake Locker Quotes
On this year compared to last year - "I think we're a little farther ahead this year, just as far as having knowledge of the offense. We've been able to take things to the next level and make the difficult looks still become successful plays. We have everybody on the same page and just play a little bit faster. As a whole, that's what the camp's been for us, and it continues to get better and better."
On what needs to be cleaned up before BYU - "I think procedural stuff, just making sure we're lining up, getting on the ball, keeping our tempo up, getting in and out of the huddle and getting as many snaps as we can."
On O-line without Senio Kelemete - "I think they're doing a great job. A lot of guys are playing different positions, and I think that's difficult, especially with the demands of our offensive line in our offense. So those guys have done a good job adjusting and making it work on the fly. It's something that's very realistic during the course of a season, so I've been really happy with the way those guys have been able to rotate and shuffle in and out and be able to work as a group with different guys next to them. So it's been great."
On having a new center - "It's different. I think the biggest thing is just making sure that you're aware of a change, taking some snaps before you get out there, just so you're comfortable with it when you get under center for the real thing."
On being more comfortable with receiving corps - "It's been a process. Now this will be the third season playing together. Anytime you're able to spend more time with each other, you get more comfortable from route to route, how they run it, how they come out of their breaks, where they like the ball, the route that they're really, really good at and they win at all the time. I think you get a comfort level with that, and with that, you get more confidence. And with confidence, you make more plays. Being able to have that kind of trust in each other, I think, is going to help us that much more successful in the passing game."
On getting antsy for the first game - "Yeah, it's exciting. We're less than two weeks away now. It is an opportunity. We've all been waiting since we got done last year. To have the opportunity to go out and play again on Saturdays for real is really exciting."
On what team needs to accomplish vs. BYU - "For us, as a football tea, our focus is going to be the same as it always is. We can't control wins and losses, but we can control the effort that we put out there, the attention to detail and execution we put out there and how we play as a team. If we go out and focus on that against BYU, we'll put ourselves in position to win the football game. Then it comes down to a few plays here and there and being able to really focus in, and it's tough. If we're able to do that throughout the course of the season, and especially early on, we'll put ourselves in a good situation and be in a good place as a team."
On being able to bring UW back to prominence - "It was a goal of mine when I first came here and something I was hoping to be a part of. To have the opportunity be able to do that now, and to possibly go out that way, is something that's pretty exciting."
On excitement around program similar to what it was when you were growing up watching UW? - "A little bit, yeah. I think there's a lot of excitement around this program right now, maybe even more than there had been at that point. If we go out and control what we can, and play hard and enjoy the game, I think we'll put ourselves in a good position to have success."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Cort Dennison (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Monday practice report
Fifty-six members of Eastside Catholic's football team were at Washington's Monday afternoon practice. In talking to EC's Head Coach - former Washington State quarterback Jason Gesser, he had to 'suck it up' by showing up at Husky Stadium, but he wanted his guys to get a sense for what an up-tempo college practice should look like. And he got his wish.
By the end of the practice the team was whooping and hollering, the defense trying to distract Nick Montana as he was trying to lead the offense for a practice-ending score. But his pass to walk-on TE Marek Domanski ricocheted through Domanski's outstretched arms, and the defense celebrated like mad. The intensity for Monday's full-pads practice had been ratcheted up ever since Ben Riva and Josh Shirley got into it after the freshman lineman from O'dea pancaked the UCLA transfer, and kept him down for good measure. Both lines congregated in a big circle as the defensive linemen came to Shirley's rescue, no doubt to give themselves props for a job well done. There was some congenial pushing and shoving, but after that incident, things definitely got active.
The biggest news was that starting middle linebacker Cort Dennison was held out because of a knee sprain, but UW Head Coach Steve Sarkisian said after practice that it was a minor injury and he should be back shortly. Senio Kelemete did some individual work, but was held out of the full-contact team stuff. His spot was taken by true freshman Erik Kohler, which kept Drew Schaefer at center and Greg Christine at right guard.
James Johnson continued his rehab of an ankle injury, walking stairs and using the stationary bike. On the day, it appeared that Dennison was the only player not to be fully suited up.
The first set of team periods were set on third-down conversions, and it was a mixed bag. The defense stopped the first attempt, but then Jake Locker connected with Jermaine Kearse for a 40-yard touchdown pass that had the offense yelling and screaming their approval. Even some of the offensive coaches were woofing at the defense after that play. Johri Fogerson was able to get a first down, but then the offense fumbled on the next play, and the defense roared in delight after recovering the ball. The second part of that team period was goal-line, and this one was fun to watch. The defense stopped the offense three out of five chances from the 2-yard line, but when Jesse Callier scored on the last rep of the period, the entire offense went to celebrate with him in the end zone - shades of Georgia v. Florida, circa 2007.
During the full team period, the quarterbacks played very well. Locker went unofficially 6-9 for 43 yards, Keith Price was 9-9 for 101 yards and Nick Montana was 4-6 for 50 yards. Those receivers that had two or more catches (unofficially) included Kevin Smith, who had two catches for 35 yards; Jermaine Kearse, who had two catches for 17 yards; Chris Polk, who had three catches for 12 yards; and D'Andre Goodwin, who had five catches for 63 yards.
During the one-on-ones, Locker hooked up with Cody Bruns for a 40-yard catch, and Price found freshman WR DiAndre Campbell for a 30-yarder.
But just when it looked like the QB's would finish the period off on a high note, Locker threw a pass up under pressure and it was picked off by Nate Williams for a 35-yard score. During the one-on-one session, cornerback Quinton Richardson came up with an interception, so the defense definitely got their hands on some footballs today.
During that same team period, DE Everrette Thompson saw more action with the ones. He lined up at one DE spot, and Talia Crichton the other. Alameda Ta'amu and Cameron Elisara played the inside positions.
Erik Folk was 3-4 on the day, with a long kick of 47 yards.
Recruit note: Graham-Kapowsin WR Jamaal Jones, already committed to Washington, was at practice Monday. He will miss his senior season due to a shoulder injury.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Steve Sarkisian (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Monday Steve Sarkisian quotes
On Cort Dennison - Just a little sprained knee. Nothing serious. He was probably due a day off anyway. It felt like he was playing ever snap in there for the defense, so it was probably good for him to get a rest and it was probably good for our other mikes to have to play."
On his prognosis - "Realistically he probably could have went today if he had had to. We could hold him out in the morning, but we'll see how it looks."
What's in store for the week ahead - "For me I'm still stressing pad level. I think we need to get lower, we need to play lower, we need to get more violent with out hands at the line of scrimmage. It's been something that we assessed with the team and will work towards with the team this week. We're really trying to just hammer home all of the special situations in the kicking game, just all of the different scenarios that can come up so that we're comfortable when those things come about. And then the third part of it is starting to peek at BYU to make sure that the things that are already in that game plan, if they're not already installed yet are installed for our guys so it's not new to them when we get that gameplan in."
BYU more on horizon now - "Yeah. When we met last night I had to show the guys on the calendar, two weeks from tonight we're going to be back home, we're going to be in the office working, you guys are going to be back in your apartments and we're either going to be 1-0 or 0-1, and that sucker is coming quick in two weeks. We just wanted to make sure it is on the horizon, but we still have some things we need to get done before we start focusing on that game."
Talk to players about struggles on road - "I think it's more of the mindset that we have going on the road, and the way that we do it and the style that we do it and how we approach it. I'm not as concerned about what happened before we got here on the road. I do know what happened with us last year on the road. We've addressed that in a sense of how we're going to handle it when we're faced with it again this fall. All in all, I feel like we should be confident. We have a veteran football team that has been on the road in hostile environments and played really well. Now we've got to finish. I think that's the real rallying cry for us, is about finishing."
On finishing games - "Once, you have to continue to do your job and continue to do things right. One of the natural things that happens in a fourth quarter is, you try to hard…I gotta make a play or I gotta make a call. Things of that nature. And that's when you make mistakes, and that's how you get beat. You blow a coverage, you make a bad call, a poor judgement, a poor decision, you force a football from the quarterback, and that's how you can get beat. So the challenge is to stick to the plan, execute really, really well and play with great effort. And if we can do that in the fourth quarter, we'll have much better success."
On what drills you can use to remind them about the fourth quarter - "We've done two minute, we've done four-minute drills as if we've had the lead in the same situation, from an offensive and defensive perspective. Part of it just the rallying cry of finish, finish everything we do, every play in every way, and I think all in all that has paid dividends for us because we're seeing it in practice. We're finishing like crazy. We have more energy at the end of practice than we do at the beginning."
On Jermaine Kearse - "He's an extremely competitive young man. He wants to win and he understands that winning just doesn't happen when you step on the field. Outside of Jake Locker and Desmond Trufant, I don't know if anybody prepares more than Jermaine Kearse; on and off the field, in the classroom and in the weight room, he prepares himself for success so he can go out and compete at a high level. And I'm very appreciative of that. Also, he's been extremely willing. We've asked him to do a lot of different things. He's not just lining up at one position. He's all over the field; he's blocking he's running, he's catching, he's on special teams - and he's been extremely willing."
On what he saw in Kearse when he first came to UW - "I saw a guy that had the ability to make plays down the field on deep balls, but was still raw and wondering. He was a freshman. What concerned me early on was, on the deep balls there was some inconsistency. He'd make a play and then drop an easy one; he'd make a play and then drop an easy one. I think that's what gave us some hesitation early in the year last fall. To his credit he kept fighting, kept battling and kept competing, and in time showed that he could make those plays consistently. That's what he did from about the first couple games on."
On having to talk to Kearse after Kavario Middleton left UW - "They are two different guys, completely two different guys. I think the natural thing is, guys leave high school and they are from high school so they stick together forever through college. But a lot of times they go their own separate ways, they have their own paths."
On the receivers blocking downfield - "It's something we've focused on. If we're going to create big plays and explosive plays in this offense, everybody has to do their part, and the receivers all want to make their plays downfield in the passing game. And the best way of having a really effective pass game is to have a effective run game, and for that to happen we have to be really great blockers downfield. They've put in the time and effort; they've done a really nice job so far in camp."
On what he saw when reviewing Saturday's scrimmage - "I saw one, I may have been a little too hard on the offense from an execution standpoint. They made some plays, they did some nice things. We ran the football extremely well. What I think was disappointing was the penalties, the line of scrimmage, the movements, the illegal formations - and those things are just about focus and locking in and doing things the right way. So that's the first thing. I like what the defense did. I thought we were much better on special teams. But all in all as a football team, we have to get our pad level lower. We're still too high. So that was a point of emphasis today, to continue to stress pad level and be violent with our hands at the line of scrimmage."
On the continued progress of Keith Price - "He's playing really efficient football. He's making good, quick decisions and he's throwing the ball extremely accurately. And he's in command. And that's what you want from the quarterback position. And that's also the value of year one to year two for everybody in the system, not just the quarterback. But that step, from year one in a system where you are just trying to find your way, to year two - that's when you can make these really big strides. And that's what you're seeing from Keith."
On Senio coming back from his ankle injury - "If we were playing today, he'd play. We did some things today with him, some one-on-one stuff against the defensive line…but I don't like high ankle sprains lingering for weeks upon weeks. I want him to get healthy, and we can afford that right now. It's not about Senio showing us his toughness. He's a tough guy, I know that already about him, I've seen him in battles, fighting and scratching. I want him healthy because we're going to need him for 13 ball games at left tackle. On the flipside of that, it's great experience for an Erik Kohler - to get in, be at left tackle, playing against the ones…these are invaluable reps he's getting right now. So for us as a football team we'd love to have Senio out there, but it's a win for us to get a young guy ready out there to play."
On what he's seen for Erik Kohler - "He belongs. This is where he's supposed to be."
On moving from creating inventory and getting into game prep and creating a depth chart - "We're in the midst of that. We're not saying there's a deadline; we'll have that for sure by Saturday when we introduce the game plan. But they don't even know it - the game plan is in. Our guys might think that there's going to be all these new plays come Saturday…anything we're going to run in that BYU game is already in the plan already. So for us, that was part of the install to get to this point, but when we lock into the actual game plan of BYU, a lot of plays will be honed down into a smaller package of what we're going to run, and certain players will be in certain spots to do those plays."
On the receiver depth - "I'm hoping we have more than four. I'm hoping we have five or six…when we can keep throwing guys at you and attacking and feeling our speed and presence and physicality of blocking downfield…I think the receiver corps has had a nice camp. I'm anxious to get James Johnson back. I'm kind of frustrated that he isn't back yet, but the other guys are doing a great job. They will all be on the plane - Cody Bruns, D'Andre Goodwin, Jordan Polk, Kevin Smith, they are going. They've done plenty of good things to deserve playing time."
On Kevin Smith and the return game - "He's strong, a strong, powerful guy. For a wide out, he runs a little more powerful. He's not as glidy or smooth in a straight line. He almost runs like a tailback with the ball. I think that's why he's such a presence back there returning kicks."
Posted by Scott Eklund
Kasen Williams (Scout)
Kasen Williams notes
Skyline WR Kasen Williams spoke with Dave "Softy" Mahler today on KJR. Here are some notes from his interview...
-- Said two-a-days start this afternoon at 2:30 for the Spartans.
-- Said UW is probably recruiting the hardest, but that LSU, Notre Dame and Cal are all real close as well.
-- Said he's thrilled to have all of the attention from schools like he's had.
-- On staying humble, Williams said during the football season all he does is focus on "the task at hand" and playing football. Said he always wants to get better and is focused on winning a state championship more than anything.
-- Why did UW, Florida, Notre Dame, LSU and Cal all make is top 5? Said mainly it was the different coaching staffs. Gets along well with each one and if they can develop him as a player and a person that's what he's looking for in his college experience.
-- Does playing for the same school his father played at have an influence? Said it was something that is "crazy" thinking he could do that and would be "amazing" to be able to do, but said playing in his father's footsteps has been in the back of his mind the whole time.
-- Talked about Austin Seferian-Jenkins and how much he's trying to recruit him to UW. Said he and Austin are "pretty tight" and they are good friends, but said they just talk about recruiting in general and the process. He said Seferian-Jenkins hasn't recruited him too much.
-- Said he's still narrowing things down, but that he's narrowed it to two schools and wouldn't announce who those final two are until Friday when he makes his announcement.
-- Softy asked about possibly playing with Nick Montana in the future. Said his parents are close to Joe and Jennifer Montana and they've gotten to know each other a lot since the basketball game where they sat next to each other and that it would be "a pretty sweet deal" if he can Nick played college football together.
-- Asked about possibly helping UW get back to national prominence, Williams said he loves the direction of the team and the program. Said the idea of being in UW's 2011 class would be great to be a part of it and "it would be really cool".
-- When Softy asked about August being a great month in recruiting for UW, Williams said he thinks so, but wouldn't let anything out and wanted to keep people guessing.
-- Said Friday will be a big day for him and that going through it since his freshman year, it will feel good to get the recruiting process done even though he's enjoyed it.
-- Said distance from home has never been a concern for him. Said if he feels he can develop as a person and player and if it "feels like home" then he would be happy. Also said he doesn't know if he will end up staying close to where he ends up playing and wants to experience different things.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Semisi Tokolahi (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Saturday Scrimmage Report
Steve Sarkisian said Saturday night that the defense won the nearly two-hour, 85-play scrimmage that served as the fans' last chance to see the Huskies involved in a substantial amount of full-contact work. The offense had their moments, but the defense, led by the No. 1 unit, set the tone early. Injuries certainly played their part, as the offense was missing three key ingredients from their 2009 campaign; Jermaine Kearse (heel bruise), James Johnson (ankle) and Senio Kelemete (ankle). All three of them are expected back next week, but not having them certainly affected how well the No. 1 offense started the scrimmage.
Freshman LT Erik Kohler started with the ones, and Drew Schaefer played center. Greg Christine was at RG. Because of Kelemete's absence, there were various incarnations of line groups. Kohler and Porter were the only freshmen that played on either the first or second teams. Walk-on William Chandler started out with the ones as well.
The number one defense set the tempo by forcing two quick three-and-outs of the No. 1 offense. Nate Williams had a sack of Jake Locker - even though by rule the quarterback isn't 'live' for fall camp - and Locker went 2-4 for minus two yards through the air to start. Sophomore Nate Fellner was the other safety that started opposite Williams. Overall, the defense had seven such 'sacks', with Williams, Semisi Tokolahi, Cooper Pelluer (two), Talia Crichton, Pete Galbraith and Andrew Hudson.
Tokolahi and senior Cameron Elisara seemed to have a lot of success early inside, and Defensive Coordinator Nick Holt noted after practice that he considers all three of those interior players - Tokolahi, Elisara and Alameda Ta'amu - starters, and how the inside of their defensive line has become a strength due to talent in numbers.
Vonzell McDowell, Anthony Boyles, Greg Ducre, Jordan Wallace and Pelluer led the defense with six tackles apiece during the scrimmage, McDowell and Ducre racking up five solo stops each.
When Keith Price and Nick Montana came in, the results weren't too much better, although Price initially led his team on a 12-play drive that ended up in a 42-yard Erik Folk field goal attempt that went wide right.
Typically their drives were also marred by penalties. Overall the team had 13 penalties assessed for 100 yards, and while most of them were given up by the offense, the defense probably had some of the most egregious ones. Husky defensive lineman Chris Robinson would have had the only turnover of the day, but his interception was given right back to the offense because of a personal foul. Tim Tucker and Quinton Richardson also had great looks at possible interceptions, but were unable to haul them in.
The first-team offense finally got on track during the half-ending two-minute drill, when Locker was able to connect with D'Andre Goodwin on a 19-yard pass play, and then followed it up with a three-yard touchdown reception to Cody Bruns.
The only other touchdown on the day would come courtesy of walk-on tight end Marek Domanski, who connected with Montana on an 8-yard pass play near the end of the scrimmage.
In fact, the whole 'second half' of the scrimmage was given to Price and Montana, who split up six second-half series with Montana getting four and Price two.
Perhaps the most surprising part of Saturday's scrimmage came in the return phase of special teams. Instead of having Chris Polk returning kicks, the coaches first brought out freshman WR Kevin Smith, and then freshman RB Jesse Callier. On Smith's second return, he took it 90 yards for a score, and to the delight of the nearly 1500 to 2000 Husky fans on hand.
During a later punt return session, Smith was brought in as their second returner behind veteran Devin Aguilar. On his one and only attempt, Smith took the kick back for what looked like it would have been an 87-yard touchdown return, but it was nullified due to a penalty.
Smith also came on at the end in terms of his receiver stats, catching four passes for 21 yards. Bruns led all receivers with five catches for 44 yards and his score, while Aguilar caught four balls for 32 yards.
Of note, starting TE Chris Izbicki didn't have a pass thrown to him during either of the two major scrimmages. Domanski caught three combined passes for 27 yards; Michael Hartvigson caught one pass for nine yards and Marlion Barnett caught one pass for seven yards.
The Huskies did establish some run game, however. They ran the ball 46 times for 188 yards, or four yards per carry - and that included that sack totals. Taking out the quarterback runs, the running backs ran at a 6.9 per carry clip. Callier had the most yards - 62 on nine carries. Demitrius Bronson was nipping at his heels, gaining 61 yards on nine carries. Chris Polk continued to get his work done on the carries he did have, toting the rock seven times for 46 yards. Johri Fogerson added 44 yards on five carries.
Injury Report: Besides Kearse, Kelemete and Johnson, Brandon Huppert, Zach Fogerson and Kalani Aldrich did not suit up on Saturday.
Faces in the house: Seen at Husky Stadium on Saturday; former UW defensive back Nesby Glascow, UW Men's Basketball Coach Lorenzo Romar. former UW DB Dominique Gaisie, who is now playing at Central Washington.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Nick Montana Saturday Scrimmage Quotes
On how he feels camp is going: "It's been going good. We've got a lot more reps than in the spring so that's helped a lot, getting in the film room and having a lot more time now that I don't have school, just concentrating on it and getting the reps mentally and physically has been good."
On the biggest adjustment: "There've been a few phases. It's a lot more mental I feel like here. And Obviously the speed, but you get used to that. Just preparing and once you prepare just knowing you know and going with it."
On the competition with Keith Price: "We are all competing. I'm competing with Jake, Keith's competing with Jake, we're competing with each other. Everyone's competing with each other. It's just a big old game and we'll see what happens."
On either one having an edge: "No, I really don't know. We're just out there playing."
On getting it going late: "We kind of got the first couple of series we had a few penalties and didn't really get into a rhythm. Then the last few drives were pretty good, we had a rhythm and went down and scored, so that was good. We were moving the ball, you can't ask for much more."
On being ahead because of showing up in the spring: "So much. It's to the point where you kind of, it's coming before you have to think about it, it's second nature now to me. That's been really hard for me having to think so much and now I'm just playing now and making the right throws, the right read."
On what he weighs now: 195, last year at this time was 185.
On being listed at 170: "That was my sophomore year. I've gained a lot since I've been here. I still want to get up there, still have a lot more I can do but I'm on the right path."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Everrette Thompson Saturday Scrimmage Quotes
On getting back out there - "It felt good just to be back out there with the fellas and just playing a little bit. I got a couple of snaps in, so…
On his health, from 1 to 100 percent healthy - "I'm up there. I don't want to put a number on it. I don't want to jinx. it."
On building off of Saturday's effort - "That's what I'm doing right now, just taking what I did today and just build off of that, get stronger every day in practice and individuals and team."
On the hardest part about getting back into the mix - "Just taking my reps and getting mentally back into the swing of things. I haven't done anything football things for five months."
On being a leader and mentor of the DL - "I see myself as a change-up. Everybody seems to play well when I'm in there, and I feel good playing with everybody in there. Hopefully I can just do more of that."
On the most important thing for him the last week of camp - "Just continue to get stronger and get in there with the ones and keep doing more things like scrimmaging and the team work."
On his rehab and strength training - "I'm with the trainers every other day, lifting and doing different things. They kind of limit me a little bit. They have me doing certain drills. This was the first time I did any football things."
On his immediate goals - "Just to start and make an impact on the game and stay healthy."
On maybe using his redshirt year - "At the beginning I thought about it, but with the rehab and all my training to this point, I feel great. I'm ready for the season. I've been on track, in fact I've been ahead of schedule, I think. "
On when the achilles injury occurred - "It happened at the end of February and I had surgery in March. I was just doing a football drill, backpedaling and I came out of my break and it just popped. I heard a deep thud and I thought I hit a cone or something in the drill. But I turned around and the cone was still there. That's when my achilles blew out."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Greg Christine Saturday Scrimmage Quotes
On the different OL lineups today: No confusion, no confusion. We're just trying to find out what line coach Cozetto wanted (to play).
On Semisi and Cameron playing well inside: We just missed our blocks. That was my fault. I've got to do a better job. We have Jake at quarterback. We've got to protect him, that's our job. When you're not doing your job, you're going to hear about it.
On Semisi: I think the whole defense is doing great – doing fantastic. Everyone says defenses win championships, which is very true. Offense puts fans in the stands, but defense win championship. They definitely played better than us today.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Steve Sarkisian Saturday Scrimmage Quotes
On Kearse being out --- His foot was sore and it was a good chance for some of those young guys to play, I need Jermaine Kearse two weeks from today, that's a little more important. And Senio and James.
They are not that long of injuries. Now if we keep pushing them and pushing them those are the kind of injuries that can linger. ... We are just trying to get them 100 percent healthy and not 85 and throw them back in and that thing hovers around 80 percent all year so trying to get them as healthy as we can.
On who won today --- I'd give it to the defense today. Especially early on we were kind of lackluster on offense, almost a little bit like in slow motion, in a sense couldn't get out of our own way because of penalties and just poor execution would be the best way to describe it.
Impact of not having JJ and Kearse and Senio --- That definitely is a factor. Talking about two All-Pac-10 performers that you don't have out there. It's great to have your left tackle and one of your go-to wide receivers. But I think we have enough talent offensively we can perform better than we did early on.
On no turnovers --- I think first, the biggest upside is not turning the ball over. Thayt's one of the big keys. When you look at the turnover margin and winning and losing there is no more telling stat than winning the turnover battle equates to W's, and the biggest way to win the turnover battle is to not give up any --- at least you are even. So I think that. I think potentially a lot of turnovers can occur on quarterback sacks and different things and they are not allowed to hit the quarterback right now, so that's a hard one to tell as well. But I think our defense is ball hungry and they will get after the football every chance they get. I'm appreciative of our quarterback play making good decisions and our running backs and wide outs playing with a high and tight mentality. The reason they are the way they are is because of the way we practice and the focus by our defense on the football that now it's become a real focus for our offense.
On Christine --- I wanted to see him at guard with the ones, or even at center with the ones. I wanted to see what he looks like. I appreciate Greg's style of play, I think he's a very bright football player. He's tough, he fights and I just like the way he plays.
On Christine coming on and then off --- Like substituting wise? We were probably rolling guys. I don't know exactly what Danny had going there.
On the backup QB battle --- I don't know that. We're going to assess these first two weeks here over the weekend and then next week and come to some at least clear sense that I'm not going to wait god forbid sommeting happens to Jake that I make the decision off the cuff on the sidelines wherever we are. I'm going to have a plan in mind. Whether I tell you or not is the question.
Price playing better right now --- He's playing pretty efficient, that's for sure. I think he's played consistently. Nick might have had a lull here or there – I thought Nick did some things today, as did Keith – but I think from a consistency-standpoint for probably the last 5-6 practices, Keith has been playing at a pretty high level.
Advantageous not to let the public know who the backup is --- Sure it is, because they're different players in a sense. It is our system still, but they are different players. I think it keeps our ability to move the quarterback around as a distinct advantage for us – not that Nick can't move, but his ability to throw the football all over the field and see coverages is something advantageous for his game. I think if somebody knew who the backup would be, and they put him in, they could already have their plan in order. That is something we have to assess if we do announce, or we don't announce. We'll see.
Kevin Smith in special teams --- I like Kevin. I think Kevin is a football player that is physical. He is really put together for a freshman. Some parts of the game are a little new to him, so it takes him a while. Once he gets it, man he can be a dominant player. We're excited, not only on offense, but on special teams. We saw him in the return game today, but some of the stuff we don't see is the other aspects of special teams where he's blocking or running or tackling. He's a nice player.
Announce to announce --- I'm going to announce, if I'm going to announce, to announce.
Zach Fogerson --- Got a shoulder deal from last practice. - sprained. Not serious, but it's serious enough where he couldn't go today. I would have liked to have him go today, but he couldn't. That one is a little disappointing because he is one guy I really wanted to see today.
Redshirting freshmen --- It will clear up here this week. We start to game-plan for BYU, and we've got to know from a rep-standpoint – there is 'X' number of reps we're trying to get done, the percentage of reps in practice if you're going to play. It will start to get pretty clear here early into next week, and mid-week next week.
Kohler at No. 1 tackle --- Yeah, we want to take a look at him, see what he looks at going against some good guys. We'll have to look at the film, it's hard to watch all 22 guys every snap. I thought he looked like he belonged, but we'll have to see.
Placekicker controversy --- I'll tell you what, Folky has been fantastic. yesterday, that one was from 58. And Guttorp, man, I don't if he's missed a field goal in a setting where he's had a line, a snap and a hold yet since I've been here.
Long snapper --- Lopez is probably the most consistent, but we're still going to keep pushing Hudson and Becker to get them ready.
2-deeps --- By the end of Wednesday, we'll have a really good idea – into Thursday. We'll have our mock game Friday, so we'll have a pretty good idea Wednesday or Thursday where we're at.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Nick Holt Saturday Scrimmage Quotes
On the first team defense - "They did a nice job. They tackled a lot better than the other night, the other scrimmage….a little sharper, a little more enthusiasm, a little crisper."
On the crowd being a plus, especially when ones versus ones - "It's more competitive, and I think they like that. I think on both sides, it generates a little more enthusiasm and a little more competitiveness, and I think it's good."
On the defense gaining the upper hand early - "I liked the fact that the first couple of series, they didn't go down and score and didn't have good field position. It was good defense. I didn't like the 2-minute drill; we kind of floated around there and didn't do exactly what we were supposed to do. That's something we didn't do a very good job of, we didn't finish the half. We had a couple of mental busts there, we weren't sharp. We'll have to look at that and show the kids some of the errors they made."
On the interior defense - "We were just rotating those guys, and I think we have three, four, possibly five with the true freshmen inside guys, that can play really well at this level, provided that they are playing hard. I consider Semisi a starter, as well as Alameda, as well as Cameron. Inside, we have some really good depth that we didn't have last year. Hopefully we can stay healthy."
On Elisara going back more inside - "He can do both, but we're trying to get Everrette back more reps, and De'Shon has had a good fall camp, he's really done some good stuff. It's allowed us to keep those guys at end and keep Cameron inside. And we're trying to limit Cameron's reps so he's healthy because of his past issues with his neck. We're watching the amount of football he's playing. Cameron will play both outside and inside all year for us."
On Everrette Thompson - "It's really the first time Everrette did any full-speed contact work, other than going in individual, and it was good to see. He's still a ways away, but he's not going to get game ready unless he starts practicing game-like. Every day he'll get more and more reps, and hopefully by September he'll be mentally ready. He still needs a lot of reps mentally so he feels good about his lower leg. I think he's still a little tentative a little bit on it, and rightfully so."
On Greg Ducre and his struggles on Saturday - "I think all the freshmen…they need to get a little rest. Because all of them are a little shaky on things. They are a little bleary-eyed and have been here and they are mentally not as sharp as they were a week ago because they've had so much put upon them as far as mentally offense and defense. I don't think any of the freshmen have stood out the last couple of days. I think they are struggling. They are tired. We need to get those guys freshened back up, so they are ready to get better. They aren't getting better right now because they are struggling mentally, I think."
On how you get them back fresh - "They have to recover. We have all day off tomorrow and they have to get mentally fresh. I think hopefully by next week, the guys that hopefully have the ability to play as true freshmen - such as Greg and Sean Parker and some of the other guys…because we're not adding much now anymore. Now we're going back through our package and now they'll just keep getting reps and hopefully they can get better. But they are kind of in the doldrums right now."
On Cooper Pelluer making plays - "Yup, but he's also making a ton of mistakes too. But it's good. The freshmen, they are doing some really good things, and they are also doing some things that freshmen do."
On the defense being where he wants it to be - "No. I'd like to see our twos be more tenacious, like our ones. And I think they can be. I think we have some good backups. I don't know if they are happy being a backup or if they are struggling mentally, but I'm not happy yet. Hopefully we can clear this thing up and get better before BYU. I feel good about some of the guys, but not all the defense. I want to feel good about all those guys. We have some good players in the depth, but they are young. They have to keep getting better and quit feeling sorry for themselves. A lot of these young guys are feeling sorry for themselves, and that the coaches are coaching them so hard. We're on their butts. I lot of them have never had this type stuff, they've always been stars. Now, for the first time they are realizing that they aren't stars and they are getting coached up and they need to grow up. It's typical, I think. It's just going through the learning curve. Two weeks..they are tired…they are tired of getting coached and getting yelled at and things like that, and rightfully so. But they are just going through the process."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Jake Locker Saturday Scrimmage Quotes
On resistance from the No. 1 defense - "they played well today. they came ready to play and I thought we were a little lackadaisical at the beginning. It showed. They got us."
On not having Senio and Jermaine - "Obviously when are guys that were a staple for us last year and guys we expect big things out of this year, any time you have those guys out the dynamic is going to be a little different. I think we had guys that stepped in and had some opportunities to make some plays today, and did well getting themselves open and blocking. So I thought it was good for them to have that kind of experience."
On the OL and different groupings - "With Senio out and I think some of our guys in the twos were out, we were having to shuffle around some positions there, so I think they were trying guys at different positions, trying different combinations and getting guys familiar playing with everybody on the offensive line - some of the young guys, the old guys - kind of mixing it up a little bit to be able to become a little more familiar with it."
On facing adversity being a good thing - "We have a lot to work on after the last scrimmage. But we have to understand that we can't just show up and that's enough. We have to come out ready to play and bring it every time we come on the field."
On getting the ones jump-started - "I thought Chris (Polk) did a good job of running really hard, finding a way to get a couple of first downs, he moved the chains for us. We were able to get a field goal. So I thought he did a really good job, just like he had throughout the course of last year - finding a way to make plays and extending drives for us."
On not having two of his leading WR in the game - "It's a different dynamic, but we have guys that are very talented players behind them as well. It'll be nice to get them back, but I thought those guys were able to step in and find themselves in some routes and get open and had a chance to make some plays."
On the 2-minute drill for a touchdown - "I thought it was a good job with the 2-minute drill at the end of the quarter, we were able to go down and score a touchdown. That was good for our offense. That's kind of who we want to be and who we are as an offense. We just have to find a way to get there at the beginning."
On the team hitting a wall - "We're just done with our second week, and it's always nice - especially for those guys that are hitting all the time - to be able to have a day off and let their bodies rest and recover. It works out well. Any time you play football six days in a row, you need a break every once in a while. I don't know if hitting the wall is the right term, but physically it takes a toll on your body and you have to have days to recover from that. And there's a lot of stuff, like install - it's kind of slowed down now, so we have a chance for it to be a little bit slower, so we can play with more speed and confidence."
On what he wants to work on the last week of camp - "We have to find a way to be able to come out and start a little faster on offense. That falls on my shoulders as the quarterback. Continue to be mistake-free and error-free in progressions and reads, checks - all that kind of stuff - just to give ourselves the best chance as an offense to get into successful plays and out of bad ones."
On no turnovers in the two big scrimmages - "It's one of our biggest goals in every game, every scrimmage, every practice. I think we've done a pretty good job as far as that goes, holding onto the ball and making sure it stays in our possession. We need to improve in a lot of other areas, but I think that's something they really harp on and I think we've done a pretty good job of, so far."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Saturday Scrimmage Statistics
The statistics for Saturday's scrimmage at Husky Stadium can be found by clicking on the link below.
Final Saturday Scrimmage Statistics
Posted by Chris Fetters
Friday Night Practice Report
It was a nice night out for a practice; warm but not unseasonably so. The staff played 'Bodies' by Drowning Pool at least three times in a row during warmups - the chorus 'Let the bodies hit the floor' resounding like a Daniel Te'o-Nesheim d-cleater on Justin Forsett. The team got the message.
The tempo and excitement built up even further during the one-on-ones, especially with the receivers and DB's. It always start with Desmond Trufant and Jermaine Kearse, and Friday night was no different. After Trufant knocked down one attempt, he jumped up and down and looked at his teammates on the sidelines to get as amped up as he was. They followed suit, and the corresponding competition was fast and furious. Freshman WR DiAndre Campbell had a good period here, beating his man for all his catches. The period ended with senior Vonzell McDowell disrupting a pass intended for frosh wideout Kevin Smith. The senior then literally jumped on Smith's back, as if to say - hey, I need a ride to the next period. It was a humorous moment to break up what had been a pretty intense period of work.
During the team period, the offense got their swagger back. It was nice to see Nick Montana come back after a couple of days struggling; he unofficially went 4-5 for 32 yards. He appeared to be more poised in the pocket and slowed down to allow receivers to come open. In general he just looked more assured.
Jake Locker and Keith Price also had very good nights. Unofficially, Locker went 13-20 for 158 yards, while the redshirt frosh went 11-13 for 93 yards. Jordan Polk came to work, and ended up with six catches for 80 yards, leading the team. Cody Bruns had four grabs for 33 yards, while Devin Aguilar had three catches for 24 yards and Johri Fogerson had three catches for 19 yards. Overall, the quarterbacks were able to find 12 different receiving targets on the night, so they are definitely spreading the wealth.
Defensively, it appeared as if the coaches were giving Everrette Thompson the night off. Kalani Aldrich worked a bit, so that meant that Hauoli Jamora, Andrew Hudson and Josh Shirley got a lot of work in Friday night. Jamora came in with Crichton with the ones to start. Hudson had a scoop-and-score fumble recovery during the 11-9 period, while safety Nate Fellner has a great interception of Locker during the team period, one where he had to scoop it almost off the turf.
Perhaps the biggest news of the night was the special teams work put in by Erik Folk. In what might be the best practice he's ever had, the junior from Woodland Hills, Calif. went 5-5 on his kicks, with two of them coming from over 50 yards (52 and 58). The 58-yarder would have been good from 60-plus.
Also, there was a question about who is working on some of the special teams units. Well, tonight they did a period of kick return, and the first team consisted of basically the first unit defense. Desmond Trufant, Nate Fellner, Nate Williams, Matt Houston, Mason Foster, Victor Aiyewa, Cort Dennison, Greg Walker Will Shamburger and Adam Long were the first unit out with Erik Folk: Vonzell McDowell, Cole Sager, Victor Burnett, Jordan Wallace, Matt Houston, Cooper Pelluer, Zach Fogerson, Jonathan Amosa, Kevin Smith and Anthony Gobern were the second unit out with Eric Guttorp.
Injury Notes: Senio Kelemete did not practice again Friday night. The team played the same No. 1 line as Thursday, with Drew Schaefer taking his place and Greg Christine taking Schaefer's place at center.
James Johnson was having a good practice, catching a 16-yard pass, but then he went back to the trainer's tent to get treatment. We'll see tomorrow if he's healthy enough to take part in the scrimmage.
Jamaal Kearse (knee), Taz Stevenson (shoulder) were also out. Brandon Huppert, Zach Fogerson and Din Kuses were dressed but didn't play or played sparingly. We will also find out about their status on Saturday.
Posted by Scott Eklund
Jordan Wallace Quotes
On his comfort level: "I feel much more comfortable this year now that this is my second time around. Actually all of us do since we all are in the system, except for the freshmen, for the second year in a row, so we know what the coaches want from us and what we need to do to make a play or to make a call. The comfort level here is great."
On how the defense sets the tone: "We're all playing fast and flying around. We know that fans love great defense and our coaches love it when we do that. Big hits always get people excited and it gets us excited. I remember being up here for an Oregon game when my brother (C.J. Wallace) was here and I was just a young guy, but this place went nuts when a big hit happened. That's what we want to get back to and I think we've got the guys to go out and hit some people in the mouth, but it's time to stop talking about it. We need to show people we can do it."
On the competition for playing time: "Oh it's all friendly, but it's definitely intense and competitive. We're not out here competing against the other guys. We compete within ourselves and then the guy in front of us. If we go out and do our job and do it fast, we're going to make plays and pushing each other every day is how you get better."
Posted by Scott Eklund
Keith Price (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Friday Morning Practice Notes
-- Cool and breezy this morning.
-- Team did a lot of special teams work again, but worked on some situational things as well.
-- Coach Steve Sarkisian said after practice that the starting two return men will be Chris Polk (kickoffs) and Devin Aguilar (punts), but that Kevin Smith, Jesse Callier, Desmond Trufant and Johri Fogerson are also going to see time there as well.
-- Freshman LB Garrett Gilliland had a blocked punt today and got plenty of hugs and high-fives from his teammates for the effort.
-- Keith Price is really starting to make some good decisions and he's throwing a much better ball than he was at this time last year or even in the spring.
-- Chris Polk made a nice move on a short pass and outraced the defense for a long gain.
-- Price found TE Evan Hudson for about 25 yards, dropping the pass right over the linebacker and in front of the safety.
-- On the sidelines working out today were WR James Johnson (ankle) who is walking without a limp, OT Senio Kelemete (ankle), S Taz Stevenson (bruised shoulder) and DE Kalani Aldrich (knee/typical rest day for him). CB Quinton Richardson wasn't dressed out today, but did watch practice. Sarkisian said he was sick and just needed a day or two to recover.
-- Sarkisian noted that Kelemete, Stevenson and Johnson are likely out for the scrimmage tomorrow although he said there's a slight chance that Johnson could play.
-- Tonight's practice starts at 6:45 p.m. and Saturday's scrimmage kicks off at 3 p.m.
Posted by Scott Eklund
Steve Sarkisian (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Friday Steve Sarkisian Quotes
On Friday's Morning Practice: "This is a 10-10-10 practice. If we do it the right way, we should be off in an hour, and that's exactly what it was. We had a really good tempo, a real sense of urgency on all phases, and that's what we were looking for today."
On Special teams emphasis at practice: "This was already scheduled, but I just think we should be better than we were, with the athletes that we have on our football team right now. They're young, so we've got to teach them really well, so there's been an emphasis on special teams. We've just got to get them playing at full speed and doing things the right way."
On P Will Mahan: "He's crushing the ball. Crushing the ball. He's big-time. For us, we're a directional punt team; we just don't let him rare back and hammer the ball straight down the field. We're angling punts, and not only is his direction on point, but he's really hammering the football."
On Saturday's Scrimmage: "I want our special teams to be better, now that we're touching on it. I thought we were really sloppy with our technique, sloppy with our scheme and our effort wasn't great on special teams. That's really the first thing I was looking for. I want to continue to see our tempo on offense increase. I want to feel a sense of urgency out of those guys, that we're playing fast, our personnel groupings and substitutions are going up to speed and sufficient. And then the third thing I'd like to see are kind of the dumb penalties, we like to refer to them as: false starts, lining up offsides, delay of games, things of that nature that really have nothing to do with your opponent, it's all on you. So if we can do all three of those things, I think we'll be all right."
On the last scrimmage before play: "Yeah, but we practice pretty hard. It's pretty hard to tell the difference between a scrimmage and a practice for us, which is a good thing."
On the coaching staff returning intact: "It's huge. It's huge on a lot of fronts. Obviously, it adds continuity. Recruiting. We have the same recruiting basis; you have the same coach going back to recruit the same area. Position groupings: the players know their coach, who they're dealing with. But a lot of it for me is practice and preparing for practice. The coaches understand what I want to get accomplished every day, and they go out and kind of reiterate the message and spread the message throughout the football team. So I think that's a big deal to me. There are a lot of great coaches in America , and a lot of them could come in and learn our scheme. But for our team, and the momentum that we carried last year into this year, having people on the same page I think is really important."
On coaches moving on after this season: "If guys move on to different jobs, that probably means we had a pretty good year. We'll fight to keep all of our guys. Part of this position – and I'm fortunate to learn from Pete – we're here to allow guys to grow, not to micromanage them and not to shelter them where nobody else knows about them. If guys have opportunities to move on, either to become coordinators or become head coaches, we're going to promote them the best we can. If that happens after this year, that's probably a good thing."
On who won't scrimmage: "Senio (Kelemete) probably won't go; I want that ankle to heal. James Johnson, I don't know. I would put him at doubtful right now; we'll see what he can do this afternoon. Taz (Stevenson), more than likely, because of the shoulder thing, I don't know if I really want full contact right now. Those are the three that really stick out at me right now."
On when Taz hurt the shoulder: "Yeah, he hurt it here. He just took an odd hit on his shoulder. It's not separated or anything; it's just bruised, it's just sore."
On the halfway point of camp: "I like where we're at. We talked about it last night as a football team. We kind of put the calendar out, with the X's through the days. If you think about it, two weeks from today, about this time, we'll be getting on a place to fly to Provo . It comes quick, it happens fast. But I've been impressed with our football team, the way they've responded – offensively and defensively, we're light years ahead of where we were last year at this time. I think that's why, as I touched on, the special teams is so important to me as we head into this weekend and next week, that we really get that thing solidified."
The the perception that defense will be a weakness: "Yeah, well, those people haven't come to practice. Our defense has been getting after it pretty good. I like some of the guys that have emerged. I think the spine of our defense is really solid, with Alameda and Cameron inside, with Mason and Cort inside, with Nate Williams at safety and then with Shamburger and Fellner back there and the emergence of Sean Parker, I love our guys right down the middle. And our edge guys are performing. Tru's being Tru, Quinton Richardson has had a tremendous camp, Victor Aiyewa has started to kind of emerge as that Sam linebacker, and these young defensive end are playing. So I like where we're at. They're playing fast, they're playing aggressive, and I think they're really embodying the personality of Nick Holt and what he brings – the energy and aggression that he brings. And I think guys are playing better."
On the second camp being easier because everybody knows the protocol now: "It has been. I think what it's done for me is it's allowed me, our coaches feel so good with the schedule and our players, it's allowed me to sit back and evaluate a little better and not get caught up in everything that's happening that exact moment. To be able to see things an step away and assess what's happening and kind of the mood of the team and things of that nature and be able to address them sooner rather than later so that things don't linger. We're kind of a well-oiled machine right now. We know what we're doing."
On BYU prep: "In an odd way we kind of have, the players don't really know it but we have. But really, really when they will get presented with the game plan is a week from Saturday."
On the returners: "I like DA (Devin Aguilar) and Johri returning punts. I'm anxious to watch Jesse Callier because I think he could add something there, as well. The kickoff return game, you know, when we open the season chris polk is going to be back there for us. but you are going to see some guys through the year, see trufant and callier and kevin smith, so we've got some guys."
On polk returning kicks and being the starting rb: "the way i view it is it's one more opportunity for him to get the ball in his hands. it's a great opportunity. the year reggie "won the heisman" he was our kickoff return guy as well as our starting tailback and he had a great year in both aspects of it."
Posted by Scott Eklund
Mike Cox (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Mike Cox Quotes
On the continuity of the staff: "Great guys and unbelievable camaraderie, led by Sark. We all get along around the working environment, but we hang together in the offseason and I've never been part of something that has this close of a relationship among the staff. I've known most of these guys for a long time so you've accumulated a lot of stories on each other as you go. We have a lot of fun together and I think the kids feel that too. This is a close staff, our families are close, so it's pretty unique."
On how unique it is to have everyone back: "I've been with staffs that are together for a year or two, but here on this staff there's no egos. There's not a lot of egos getting involved. We're all going for the same common goal and sometimes that's not always the case, but sometimes it always is -- every case is different, but it's a close-knit group."
On how Sarkisian facilities that camaraderie: "Sark just jumps in with us. He wouldn't ask us to do anything that he's never done. He's very personable and a great leader and he holds you accountable for your job and he makes it a great working environment."
On the linebackers as a group and how they are coming along: "It's interesting because we have four seniors and five freshmen, so it's one or the other right now. The young guys are coming along. I think Cort (Dennison), Mason (Foster) and Victor (Ayeiwa) have taken a couple of strides in the right direction the past few days and they're doing a solid job. Now it's just about developing the depth behind them and getting the younger guys up to speed and playing with the same intensity and speed of the first guys."
On what Victor's toughest transition was: "Just the newness of it and being able to play faster. When you move up closer to line, things happen faster so it's just playing and he didn't get the opportunity to do that this spring because he had shoulder surgery. So it's just taking repetitions it takes to get in there and react on a consistent basis."
On the freshmen linebackers: "Cooper Pelluer and Garrett Gilliland and Victor Burnett are all guys that could see time. Jamaal (Kearse) is going to be a good player, but he never played linebacker in high school so this is all kind of new to him and he's learning and doing great. Princeton Fuimaono is coming along and honestly I love all those guys. I'm excited about all of them right now."
On moving guys around to get depth: "We're moving guys back and forth right now just to create depth among our guys. Matt Houston knows a couple of spots, Cort knows a couple of spots and Mason knows a couple of spots, so we can kind of mix and match, depending on what we're seeing or what's happening injury-wise with us so we can create some depth."
On who the backups would be: "It's a helluva competition, it's cool. The first group (Dennison, Foster and Aiyewa) has kind of separated themselves to be honest about it, but Matt is doing some good things, so Victor isn't on easy street by any means, so there's still a lot of competition."
On Brandon Huppert: "He's extremely intelligent and he was a decent player last year, he blew his knee last year and came back, but his mental side of things makes him a guy we can operate every call and those young guys are catching up, but mentally he's very sharp."
On Jordan Wallace and Matt Houston: "He's coming along. He had a good day last night and he just needs to keep coming. He's a young guy, so it's a good battle at that WIL (weakside) spot. We threw Matt in there the past few days just to see what he could do at that spot and they're battling it out and Matt's good because he knows how to play all the spots right now and we're not afraid to put Matt in there with the first group, with the ones, if we need to."
On why they moved Victor up: "Just from what we knew what he could do in the past. He's a physical-type player as a safety and he just fit the profile and with his position (at SAM) there's some similarities to what he did at strong safety so it was kind of a natural fit for him. He came in at 220 pounds and it was a natural move for him."
On what he's done to move him up in the pecking order: "In the spring he was hurt and now that he's healthy and he can line up in there and we can see him time after time after time and he's getting used to playing there and he's much more comfortable."
On Dennison putting on size: "He's bigger now. He was probably 208 last year or 210, so he's over 220 now. He came and asked me 'do I need to gain weight to play?' and I said 'Nope. Just get stronger and if it naturally happens, it happens, but don't put on bad weight just because you think you have to' because that wasn't the case."
On losing Donald Butler: "Donald was arguably the best linebacker in the Pac 10 last year, so I don't care who you're playing behind, but Cort is a great leader and off-the-charts Football Intelligence. His FBI is really good. He can tell you what most guys do on the field and that's a real positive for him and that's what allows him to play fast, because he knows what he's doing."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Nick Holt (K.Grinolds/Dawgman.com)
Nick Holt Thursday quotes
On the continuity in the program - "We have a lot more guys that are experienced with our system, so they are playing faster. And we have a lot more knowledge of our kids in game situations, we've been with them for 12 games, so we know how they are going to react and they know how we're going to react in our calls. They can predict what's going to unfold on Saturday, and I think that makes it for a whole different season than last year. I think there's a trust factor on both sides - the coaches and the players - and I think that's going to help us out."
On the continuity of the staff - "You don't have to spend guys teaching the system, because they already know the system. So you can really accelerate the learning process with the kids because the coaches already know it. We didn't lose any coaches, and the coaches that have been in the system a while and they know what drills to coach and why we're doing it and how we're doing it, so they do a lot better job. And the kids pick up on that too."
On the Wildcat formation and the next evolution - "It's thrown college football for the last two years in a whole different fashion as far as defensive coordinators and play-calling and stuff like that. I don't know what the next evolution is: I think you're seeing a lot more option off of it - the triple-option, the wishbone philosophy where now you've got to cover your ass on everything. You can't just be in man-to-man coverage or blitz; you have to have all your bases covered. I think you're seeing a lot more of that in the Wildcat offense."
On the Wildcat formation and the Pac-10 - "I think we will see some of it, I'm not sure how much. I think every team probably has a little package of it."
On Victor Aiyewa - "As of right now he's done a really nice job and he's kind of separated himself from the other guys. If he's at a 9 right now, the next guy is sitting at a 6. Six or seven. So he's got a little separation. I think he's done a nice job learning the system and has shown his football instincts. And I think it's a good position for him, I really do. He's taken to it extremely well and hopefully throughout the season he remains healthy and helps us. And I think that he will, I really do.
On Alameda Ta'amu - "He's a different guy. With his body…he's in shape. We automatically now, through the play of him, we can be really physical against the run and the linebackers - Cort and Mason and Vic - they can roam around and run around and not get blocked and really play fast. He is one guy that has made a change in the off-season, and I'm really proud of him. A lot of guys have made jumps, but from a year ago today, he's a whole different kid to me. He's done a nice job so far for us."
On how his play helps the ends - "Our ends are playing well, but we need to get Everrette Thompson back. That's the bottom line. Our kids really respect him and it's a really good unit when he's in there. They feel real comfortable with him. But with 'Meda in there, it helps the ends because he can get great push on the pocket and kind of collapse it and the ends can kind of run around the horn or come back underneath and all that kind of stuff."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Cody Bruns Thursday quotes
On camp - "It's going pretty well, I think. Just competing every day. We have a lot of depth at receiver, so there's competition every day and we push each other to the fullest. I think it's just going to make us grow as a unit."
On confidence - "I've been here going on my third year now, and have been through a lot. Knowing every position really helps. That was my main thing, to learn every position I can so it would help me expand where I could play."
On his spot in the depth - "I'm definitely in the rotation. When those guys need a break or if we go four-wides or we have different packages for each group, so I'm hopefully just trying to roll into that…when the season comes, we'll see what happens."
On being happy with his role - "I'm good with it. Obviously as a competitor you want to play. That's the biggest thing. But you come out here and compete and give it your all and that's all you can do. I'm on a mission, really. Time's running out. Shoot, it goes by quick. I'm a junior already. You've got to take your time here and give it your all. "
On punt returns - "I'll do anything. Anything I can get my hands on, whatever I can do to get on the field, I'll do. It's fun. I like it."
On being a holder - "Coach Nansen came up to me and asked me if I had ever held before, and I was like no, but I'll do it. And I just kind of fell into it. I worked on it with Erik (Folk) and (Brendan) Lopez all spring and summer and it just kind of stuck."
On the only time a holder is noticed when they make a mistake - "Yeah, definitely! (laughs) But I'm OK with that."
On talking to his former Prosser teammates, Kellen and Kirby Moore - "Oh yeah, they are really good friends of mine. I grew up with them, so whenever we go home we try and meet up, play golf, have dinner. Our families are good friends. I always keep in touch with them."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Jimmie Dougherty Thursday quotes
On the depth after the first three - "That's the thing we're battling through - as everybody is. All positions are going through it right now…the wear and tear of camp…we've got some guys that are dinged up here and there. It's tough right now. It's frustrating for some guys because they aren't out there competing at an optimum level. But the guys that are out there are busting their butt. Kearse and Aguilar are very durable, dependable guys. Cody Bruns is having a heckuva camp, and D'Andre Goodwin is just having an awesome camp. The attention to detail, the hunger that he's playing with…he's playing like a senior that's on a mission. I'm really, really proud of him so far."
On where this group is from a year ago - "It's a very deep group. The thing that's maybe different is that we've had a year with them. We played a season with the guys that played all year and made plays for us, so obviously Jermaine and Devin and James and Flea (Goodwin) played some here and there…those guys we know have played in games. Cody Bruns, he's played in games for us. He's been in there for us, so it's just a trust factor, knowing that those guys have made plays for us and the stage isn't too big for them. But as far as the depth and the guys competing and all that, it's the same - if not even deeper. A new guy like Kevin Smith coming out here and DiAndre Campbell - working them into the rotation - it's only going to get tougher and tougher as we go along. And we'll keep on recruiting great players and the best guys will find their way on the field."
On the group being in shape for camp - "Our strength staff does a tremendous job of getting these guys ready, and these guys doing it on their own. The (summer) throwing sessions…they run it as if we're out there. You know you've got something when the players take ownership and work just as hard whether the coaches are there or not. The whole team…and definitely the receiving team, hearing from the strength staff, I know they had a great summer getting themselves ready."
On William Chandler - "Well, Willie C. is one of those guys that's very dependable. He's a 4.0 student, he's smart, so I can put him in a number of different positions - which gives him more opportunities. He's a guy that really - from last spring on - when he had chances he made plays. It's just that simple. Making the most of your opportunities; he's a classic case of that."
On Jermaine Kearse and taking the next step - "If you ask him, that's what his goals are. He's definitely got the talent and the drive and the competitiveness and all those things to have that type of season. Right now I'm just proud of him how he's working and also from a leadership standpoint. He's a guy that has really distanced himself…and along with Devin…those two guys together, solid as a rock. You know what you're getting out of 'em. They come to work every day, they are pros, they master their trade. Those are the type of guys they are. There's not doubt he's going to have a great year."
On Kearse putting up the same numbers as last year - "Oh yeah, I think he definitely can. And he's not concerned with the numbers; he's a guy that's a team guy and all he cares about is the wins. He's going to get a lot of opportunities week-in and week-out. We'll make sure a lot of balls get thrown his way."
On Kearse's last season - "I would classify it as a breakout season. Week-in and week-out, he just made big plays for us. He was a guy that played with great attention to detail every week and with great energy and great effort. When he had opportunities, he made plays. I was really proud of him and really excited about what he brings to the table for years to come."
On his battles with Desmond Trufant - "A lot of the corners are playing great right now. You'll see it in the one-on-ones. And that's big-time because it's just you and him. It's good on good, going against Tru or going against Quinton - who is playing great right now - Adam Long, Tony Gobern…but Tru is definitely an elite corner, an all-Pac-10 type corner. Those guys are battling and it's making us better. And it's our job to bring it every day to make them better. And vise-versa. That's how we look at it; that's just the nature of the two positions. If you're around them enough, they are always going after each other - in the lunch room or meetings or whatever - wide receivers and DB's for all time have been jibber-jabbering at each other."
On Devin Aguilar - "DA is just a really hard worker. He comes to work every day, he puts his hard hat on and he goes to work. He's a great route-runner and he has great physical talent. He's tough too; he's one tough sucker. Last year playing dinged up most of the year, he missed a couple of games and battled through it. He still caught 40-plus balls. He's a warrior. There's no doubt about it."
On the continuity of the staff for this season - "It's great. Just like the players. A year into it, everybody understands the tempo of how we do things and what's expected, so now we're off and running. The players have that comfort level; they know exactly what to expect from us. It's not that uncertainty…how is coach going to act today? What is he going to say? They know what to expect, which is that we're going to bring it every day. And they have to match our intensity level."
On who pushes the most buttons on the staff - "Mike Cox. I'd give it to Cox, for sure. He's really good at it too - one of the best I've ever seen. He spreads it out; nobody is safe."
Posted by Chris Fetters
William Chandler Thursday Quotes
On this fall being surprising to him - "Not really. I worked really hard this spring, and kind of got my name out there so the coaches knew what I could do. I came out hopeful, and I have been getting a lot of reps, which I'm very happy about. I'm just trying to keep going, keep working hard, keep getting those reps."
On when he knew there was going to be a breakthrough - "I think this spring was the time when I really thought there was going to be a breakthrough. D'Andre got hurt a little bit and Cody got a concussion, so I got a chance to play a little bit and show 'em what I could do. I studied my playbook and everything I could. I was able to make some plays and show 'em what I could do. I think that's when the breakthrough happened."
On getting help from former UW walk-on Tony Chidiac, who also played at Skyline - "Tony was great. He was a great mentor coming in. He was an older guy that knew the coaches and knew the system. I came in during the fall and I didn't know anyone on the team. Him and also Cody Habben, who also went to Skyline, they both reached out to me and helped me out. Tony helped me - he watched film with me and would help me with the formations and the plays and everything. It was really nice to have him around."
On coming from a pass-happy team like Skyline helping him - "I think it really prepared me well. Playing at a school like that, we'd run four-wide a lot. So doing that really excelled me, whereas at a lot of other high schools run the ball more, like a wing-t thing, around here. So that helped a lot and helped me to progress to where I am now."
On why walking on at UW - "I always loved the Huskies. I grew up around here and always wanted to be a Dawg. Also, I wanted to play for coach Sark when he came in. Also the fact that it's a great school. I could have gone to some smaller schools and played football, but I just wanted a bigger school. And I got in here academically, and I wanted to get a good education as well - so that was a turning point."
On options - "I had no Division-1 offers. I had Division-3 - Linfield, Whitworth….schools like that. Central (Washington), I didn't have an offer from them but they kind of looked at me a little bit. But I really had no offers that were full scholarships or anything like that."
On earning a scholarship at UW - "That's definitely a goal. My first goal is to help the team. I want to contribute this year, on the field and get out there. I think if I do that the whole scholarship thing will take care of itself and be secondary. Maybe that'll happen for me down the road, but I just have to keep working hard and that will take care of itself."
On traveling for the BYU game - "Right now, that's one of main goals. I'd really love to travel this year. I didn't get to last year, and I was kind of disappointed…but it is what it is. I'd really love to get on special teams or something, however I can contribute…that would be great."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Thursday full practice report
There were a few notes that came out of Thursday night's practice; the good part is that, in many ways, no news was good news. Senio Kelemete, James Johnson and Jamaal Kearse were not able to work out due to injury, but none of those injuries appears to be serious in nature. First, Senio Kelemete did not practice today. Washington Head Coach Steve Sarkisian said afterward that it was a sprained ankle, and he was due for a rest anyway. "I want to get that ankle healthy, so if it takes a few days, it'll take a few days."
With Senio out, Drew Schaefer moved to left tackle, Greg Christine played No. 1 center and Mykenna Ikehara was at the No. 1 RG spot. All the other spots were the same. The No. 2 offensive line was Erik Kohler at LT, Nick Wood at LG, Colin Porter at center, Skyler Fancher at RG and Dan Kanczugowski at RT. And just to show how much versatility they are instilling in the OL, there was a No. 2 OL of Kohler, Wood, Tolar, Porter and Kanczugowski.
James Johnson started practicing today, but didn't do anything in the team period. Sark said that it's going to take a few days to get back. It sure looked for a while though, because he snagged a brilliant one-handed catch in individual drills that definitely caught the attention of the 100 or so folks that were there. He did also walk stairs for the second-straight day.
Jamaal Kearse has a swollen knee, and according to Sark he should be back either Friday or Saturday. Taz Stevenson has a shoulder issue, and it's probably going to be a few days for him too.
Don James and his wife were at practice. He was there as part of a fund-raiser that's going on for the UW marching band.
Things with the linemen continue to skirt that edge where little chippy moves take place nearly every play, and when that happens things are bound to break out into something a little more serious. Drew Schaefer and Everrette Thompson got into a brief tussle, and Ryan Tolar and Chris Robinson got into another one where they took part in some afters when the play was done. Tempers are on a knife-edge, and there's no question that both lines are playing with a serious chip on their shoulders.
During those linemen 1-1's, Tolar and Schaefer did a nice job for the OL, while Andrew Hudson and De'Shon Matthews did their part for the defense. For the WR/DB 1-1's, the two top players for each squad - Desmond Trufant and Quinton Richardson at CB and Jermaine Kearse and Devin Aguilar at WR - did very well. After that, it was a mixed bag
During the first team drill of the practice, it was great to see William Chandler continue to find some work with the ones. He's a smart and versatile receiver, and that's helping him find a niche on the team.
Special teams continues to be a spot of strength for the Huskies, at least for the first team. Will Mahan had a 57.5 yard average on the two live kicks he had on the day, and Erik Folk was 3-4 with a long of 48 yards. The battery of Brendan Lopez to Cody Bruns to Folk was working well. The one miss hit the left upright.
It appeared that they had another 'overtime' drill, where the offense started at the defense's 25-yard line. Jake Locker threw a 15-yard TD to Devin Aguilar, while Keith Price had a 15-yard TD to Zach Fogerson and a 10-yard TD to Jesse Callier.
Price also excelled during the final team period, where they had a running 40-second clock and the team was emphasizing tempo. He threw a great 17-yard TD pass to Chandler, and was the only QB to lead his unit to a score during that period.
Posted by Chris Fetters
Thursday night Quinton Richardson quotes
On hearing that the offense will have to carry the load - "I love hearing it, because that just makes it that much better for the defense, knowing that the offense is getting so much publicity and love. That means our defense is making them that much better. That's how I see it in my eyes - that just gives me that much more initiative and that much more effort to go harder in practice, knowing that we're going up against some of the top guys in the country."
On going under the radar - "I love it. That way, teams underestimate us and we come out and win games. Love it."
On why this defense will be better than last year's - "Time, age and wisdom. We learned so much from last year, and I just felt like we've gotten so much closer, even with this incoming class, the freshmen…there's so much bonding between us. It just feels so much better. The coaches notice it. It's crazy. The fans even say it. It's a real good look."
On rolling lots of guys in like last year - "Nothing ever written in script, everything's just etched. But we have so much depth, so there's going to be switches and changes…I wish the whole defense could play. We have so much talent in our depth chart, even the freshmen…I see a lot of good things in our future as they get older. We'll just let the tables roll."
On where this defense ranks compared to the others he's been on - "It's at the top of the list. We've grown and gotten so much better compared to last season. Looking back at the Cal game…I feel like every game before then we grown and gotten better. That last game set the stepping stone for this up-and-coming season. We just have to be ready to go."
On the battles between Trufant and Kearse - "That happens. That's part of football. They are really competitive. They love trying to beat each other. I admire it. It's fun to watch. It's fun to look at. They go at it. It makes you want to work hard, seeing two guys like that giving it all they've got, every time, every down, every snap. It's great to have on our team."
On Desmond being more animated than normal - "That's what we're supposed to do. We're Huskies. We're supposed to be yelling, we're supposed to be doing that. He's doing a great job. We all are. I'm happy for him."
On playing well the last couple days - "I'm feeling it a lot. It's just something I have to maintain. I made it a goal to myself, more of a promise to myself. If I can go hard one day, I should be able to do it every day. It's just something. I made a pact to myself, to my coaches and to the rest of this team. I promised not to let anyone else on the team down, so I just have to go hard - every snap, every down."
On the spot opposite Trufant being up for grabs - "Every spot is open. No spot is locked and sealed, so every spot is open, in my eyes."
On playing well in Thursday's scrimmage - "It just boosts my confidence, and not just my confidence - it boosts my teammates' confidence in me and it boosts the coaches' confidence in me. It's not even just with me. I'm just trying to get everyone around me to believe in me."
On the Cal game - "It's great to look back on it, to see how many plays were made and how many players are returning from that game and from last year. It's a great aura and it's great morale."
Posted by Chris Fetters
Thursday night Steve Sarkisian quotes
On Senio Kelemete: "He's got a sprained ankle. It actually worked out. We've got enough linemen now that we can afford to not have to force a guy to keep going on something that could linger for weeks and weeks and weeks. I want to get that ankle healthy. So if it takes us a few days, it will take a few days."
James Johnson: "He's trying to fight to get back. Realistically, those ankles take awhile. He's trying his best, and to his credit, he's working to get back. Ankles take awhile; that's the nature of it – whether it's basketball or football, whatever. Ankles take awhile. It's going to take him a few days."
Jamaal Kearse: "He's got a bursitis thing in his knee. He's got a swollen knee. We should get him back, if not tomorrow, the next day."
Taz Stevenson: "His shoulder's still not there yet. It's still a little swollen."
Jermaine Kearse: "I hope so. I felt like he followed up with he did last year, especially the second half of the season, and did it in spring practice. And he's kind of doing the same things this fall camp. We've given him some days where he's had a little bit of a lighter load. But for the most part, we anticipate him being not only a deep threat, one thing he's working on in his game is taking the short stuff and making the bigger plays with the ball in his hands."
Kearse being target of defenses: "He could, potentially. I'd like to think that we've got enough weapons where, if a team really tries to take away a wideout, then that should open things up for Devin Aguilar, James Johnson, D'Andre Goodwin, Chris Polk, Jesse Callier, Johri Fogerson, Jake Locker. I'd like to think we've got enough weapons that, if teams really try to double a receiver of ours, then we can hurt them somewhere else."
Jordan Polk: He really did. He's had a great camp, up until today. Today, for whatever reason, he just dropped a couple balls. I thought he's been running really well, he's had a great attitude. See how he responds tomorrow after probably not his best practice of camp today.
What do you see in William Chandler: Kind of a journeymen, a workman-like guy who can play all the positions. Does a lot of the dirty work, which is a guy you always have got to have.
Chandler running with No. 1s: Yeah, in some specific situations, for sure, he is. There's no question.
Aguilar dinged up at end of practice: A little bit, he kind of got hit in the stomach. He'll be fine. Nothing serious.
Quinton Richardson being good this week: I think Quinton has done a nice job. He's refocused himself. He's done some decent things to get himself back playing consistent football. He's not as roller-coastery or high then low – he's kind of play consistent. That is what you need out there on the corner.
Is Q separating himself as that starting cornerback opposite Trufant: I don't know that for sure. We're going to wait next week for a lot of those decisions.
Dawgman Insider Blog 2: August 2010
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