UW Huskies Insider

Archives: Aug. 2011

Aug.
31st

Wednesday’s practice report: Polk practices in red jersey, Fogerson full practice

In a hint of good news – maybe not necessarily for this weekend, but definitely next week’s game against Hawai’i – Chris Polk was in full pads practicing today. He wore the red “no contact” jersey, but he was out there running and cutting at full speed and being very physical during individual drills. He even took a couple of hand-offs during team drills.

“I thought Chris looked good today.  We’ll see how he responds tomorrow.  We’ll have to see how he responds tomorrow.”

Fell0w running back Johri Fogerson was also in full pads and did

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Aug.
31st

Scouting the PAC-12: Top to Bottom

PAC-12 NORTH DIVISION

1. OREGON DUCKS

AT A GLANCE
Coach: Chip Kelly, third year
2010: 12-1, 9-0 in Pac-10 (first), lost to Auburn, 22-19, in BCS National Championship game.
Starters returning: Seven offense, six defense, two kickers.

SET YOUR SIGHTS ON

  • LaMicheal James, RB, 5-9, 185, Jr. Heisman finalist last year (1,731 yards, 21 TDs) could become school’s all-time leading rusher in first quarter vs. LSU.
  • Darron Thomas, QB, 6-3, 215, Jr. Dual-threat accounted for 35 TDs (30 passing, 5 running) and steered the nation’s top-ranked offense (47 points per game).
  • Cliff Harris, CB, 5-11, 165, Jr. Playmaker (6 INTs, 17 breakups) is indefinitely suspended after run-in with the law but is one of the nation’s best when on the field.
  • John Boyett, S, 5-10, 198, Jr. Harris isn’t the only dynamic player in secondary; Boyett ranked second in tackles while picking off five passes.

THE SKINNY
If it wasn’t players running afoul of the law (that’s you, Harris) it was the recruiting scandal sullying the Ducks reputation. That will fade if Oregon puts on an offensive clinic again – which they should do with their core back – and roll to the first Pac-12 title game. Tough test out of the gate vs. LSU, but it’s smooth sailing until Stanford in November.

2. STANFORD CARDINAL

AT A GLANCE
Coach: David Shaw, first year
2010: 12-1, 8-1 in Pac-10 (second), beat Virginia Tech, 40-12, in Orange Bowl.
Starters returning: Five offense, six defense, one kicker.

SET YOUR SIGHTS ON

  • Andrew Luck, QB, 6-4, 235, Jr. If you haven’t heard about the Heisman favorite and potential No. 1 draft pick … welcome back from Mars.
  • Stepfan Taylor, RB, 6-2, 202, Jr. Leading rusher in 2010 (1,137 yards) also had 28 receptions.
  • Shayne Skov, LB, 6-3, 244, Jr. Team’s top tackler and wearer of a Mohawk capped 2010 in Orange Bowl with three sacks, 12 tackles.
  • Delano Howell, S, 5-11, 198, Sr. No surprise if this ball hawk winds up earning All-America honors.

THE SKINNY
New coach Shaw lucked out when Luck (70.7 percent passing, 3,338 yards, 28 TDs) decided to return to school. Still, Shaw must uncover three new starters on offensive line and replace the top two leading receivers from 2010. Solid linebackers and DBs make defense especially stout and should help Shaw enjoy a winning first season. Cardinal could be 6-0 when they play UW.

3. WASHINGTON HUSKIES

AT A GLANCE
Coach: Steve Sarkisian, third year
2010: 7-6, 5-4 in Pac-10 (tie-third), beat Nebraska, 19-7, in Holiday Bowl.
Starters returning: Seven offense, eight defense, two kickers.
SET YOUR SIGHTS ON

  • Chris Polk, RB, 5-11, 214, Jr. Is there any such thing as minor knee surgery? Huskies fans hope so.
  • Keith Price, QB, 6-1, 195, So. Will need a lot of poise to fill some of the biggest shoes ever in Seattle.
  • Jermaine Kearse, WR, 6-2, 208, Sr. Lakes grad has improved in receptions, yards and TDs in each of his first three seasons.
  • Cort Dennison, LB, 6-1, 236, Sr. Must try and replace leadership and production of the departed Mason Foster, Victor Aiyewa.

THE SKINNY
Is the pendulum swinging upward? Even though Jake Locker has gone on to the NFL, the team should provide better supporting cast for Price as the new starting quarterback – especially Polk, who is on pace to reset many of school’s rushing records. Cornerback Desmond Trufant, out of Wilson High, is poised for a breakout season as a junior in leading deep secondary.

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Aug.
31st

EWU coach Beau Baldwin on QB Bo Levi Mitchell: “I hope to God he thinks and he feels we are going to win this ball game. “

Jumped on the Big Sky coaches conference call today to listen to Eastern head coach Beau Baldwin, but since I’m a Montana grad, I also like to hear what’s going on around the league. And with Mike Kramer back in the conference with Idaho State, it was going to be entertaining.

Obviously there has been discussion about Eastern Washington quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell’s interview with Dave “Softy” Mahler on 950 KJR yesterday. Mitchell talked about playing FCS teams when he was with SMU and how teams can’t help but overlook them at times.

Toward the end of the interview,

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Aug.
31st

Huskies Preview: Breaking down the offense

QUARTERBACKS
Pac-12 rank: 10th

The skinny: Jake Locker is gone to the NFL, and Keith Price steps in. He isn’t Locker. He’s not as big, not as strong and doesn’t have the cannon for an arm. But he may be a more accurate passer. And he’s easily stepped into the leadership role.
Backups: Nick Montana lost the quarterback competition in the spring, but he still competes like the job could be his. He isn’t blessed with the strongest arm, but he understands defenses and can throw the underneath routes with precision. Derrick Brown has the size and arm of a young Daunte Culpepper.

NO. NAME, POSITION HT WT YR-EXP HOMETOWN/LAST SCHOOL
17 Keith Price, QB 6-1 195 Soph-1V Compton, CA/St. John Bosco
5 Nick Montana, QB 6-3 203 FrRS Thousand Oaks, CA/Oaks Christian
6 Derrick Brown, QB 6-3 236 Fr-HS Winchester, CA/Vista Murrieta

WIDE RECEIVERS
Pac-12 rank: 2nd

The skinny: The deepest position on the team. The Huskies can and will play six receivers in game and all can contribute in different ways. Senior Jermaine Kearse has been the Huskies only big play threat. But sophomore Kevin Smith and freshman Kasen Williams will also bring that element. Smith might be one of the team’s most improved players. Junior James Johnson has played his way out of the doghouse and back on the field.
Backups: Technically, only DiAndre Campbell is the only back-up since the five others were listed as “starters.”

NO. NAME, POSITION HT WT YR-EXP HOMETOWN/LAST SCHOOL
15 Jermaine Kearse, WR 6-2 208 Sr-3V Lakewood/Lakes
9 Devin Aguilar, WR 6-0 195 Sr.-3V Denver, CO/Mullen
2 Kasen Williams, WR 6-2 212 Fr-HS Sammamish/Skyline
8 Kevin Smith, WR 6-0 209 Soph-1V Compton, CA/Centennial
3 James Johnson, WR 6-1 198 Jr-2V Valley Center CA/Valley Center
19 DiAndre Campbell, WR 6-1 195 Fr-RS Oakland, CA/Oakland Tech

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Aug.
31st

UW Huskies Preview: Sizing up the defense and special teams

DEFENSIVE LINE
Pac-12 rank: 6
The skinny: A few years ago, the Huskies defensive line was a pushover. They weren’t strong or fast or big. Not this year. Good recruiting and the maturation of senior Alameda Ta’amu have transformed the defensive line into a team strength. Ta’amu showed he’s a force inside late in the season and is a legitimate NFL first-round pick. Hau’oli Jamora showed glimpses of greatness as undersized freshman. He’s added 25 pounds of muscle and is undersized no more.
Backups: The Huskies finally have depth and versatility. But this depth has talent. True freshman Danny Shelton has been outstanding in his first fall camp and will see plenty of snaps, particularly in run situations. Sophomore Sione Potoa’e has been inconsistent and beat up with injuries, but has talent. Speedy defensive end Josh Shirley gives UW the ability to switch up the defensive front look with a pure speed rusher from the outside.

NO. NAME, POSITION HT WT YR-EXP HOMETOWN/LAST SCHOOL  
74 Alameda Ta’amu, DT 6-3 337 Sr-3V Kent/Rainier Beach
92 Everrette Thompson, DT/DE 6-6 272 Sr-3V Renton/Kennedy
52 Hau’oli Jamora, DE 6-3 247 Soph-1V Laie, HI/Kahuku
11 Talia Crichton, DE 6-3 255 Jr-2V Lakewood, CA/Lakewood
71 Danny Shelton, DT 6-1 334 Fr-HS Auburn/Auburn
55 Sione Potoa’e, DT 6-2 276 Soph-1V Ft. Lewis/Lakes
97 Lawrence Lagafuaina, DT 6-0 329 Fr-RS Aiea, HI/Aiea
98 Semis Tokolahi, DT 6-2 334 Jr-2V Hilo, HI/Hilo
22 Josh Shirley, DE 6-3 229 Fr-RS Fontana, CA/Kaiser
93 Andrew Hudson, DE 6-3 251 Fr-RS Redlands, CA/Redlands East Valley

LINEBACKERS
Pac-12 rank: 12
The skinny: It could be an interesting season as middle linebacker Cort Dennison looks around and sees nothing but underclassmen and inexperience. The Huskies will start sophomore Princeton Fuimaono and freshman John Timu on either side of him. Both are talented but low on game snaps. Dennison is sturdy and steady. He was fourth in the Pac-10 in tackles last season, despite missing a game.
Backups: There isn’t a ton of experience in the second team unit. Sophomore Garrett Gilliland started in place of Dennison last year and looked like a freshman. He was in the mix as starter at outside linebacker and will see reps. Junior college transfer Thomas Tutogi has looked good in fall camp and is physically ready to step in and play.

NO. NAME, POSITION HT WT YR-EXP HOMETOWN/LAST SCHOOL
31 Cort Dennison, MLB 6-1 234 Sr-3V Salt Lake City, UT/Judge Memorial
10 John Timu, OLB 6-1 220 Fr-HS Long Beach, CA/Long Beach Memorial
37 Princeton Fuimaono, OLB 6-1 215 Soph-1V Long Beach, CA/Long Beach Jordan
50 Thomas Tutogi, MLB 6-1 244 Soph-JC Chula Vista, CA/Southwester JC
53 Garrett Gilliland, OLB 6-0 226 Soph-1V Anaheim, CA/Orange Lutheran
58 Jamaal Kearse, OLB 6-2 224 Fr-RS Lakewood/Lakes
54 Tim Tucker, MLB 6-1 240 Soph-SQ Harbor City, CA/Narbonne
43 Cooper Pelluer, OLB 6-3 225 Soph-SQ Sammamish/Skyline
51 Jordan Wallace, OLB 6-0 237 Jr.1V Sacramento, CA/Grant

SECONDARY
Pac-12 rank: 7
The skinny: There is some experience and some talent, now the unit just needs to make plays. Last year, the secondary was inconsistent, particularly its most talented player, Desmond Trufant. But this fall, Trufant has made it a point not to be hesitant and play aggressively on the ball. The result is a return to the promising player we saw in 2009. Strong safety Sean Parker is hard hitter in run support, while junior Nate Fellner has been steady in the games he’s started.
Backups: Oft-injured safety Justin Glenn could see some time in place of Fellner and as the nickel back. When he’s healthy, Glenn has been productive. Sophomore Greg Ducre will be the first corner off the bench and could start early with Quinton Richardson still recovering from an ankle sprain.

NO. NAME, POSITION HT WT YR-EXP HOMETOWN/LAST SCHOOL
29 Nate Fellner, FS 6-1 201 Jr-2V Fresno, CA/Clovis
1 Sean Parker, SS 5-10 202 Soph-1V Los Angeles, CA/Narbonne
28 Quinton Richardson, CB 6-0 203 Sr-3V Renton/O’Dea
6 Desmond Trufant, CB 6-0 184 Jr-2V Tacoma/Wilson
20 Justin Glenn, FS 5-11 206 Jr-2V Mukilteo/Kamiak
14 Taz Stevenson, SS 6-1 203 Soph-1V Mililani, HI/Mililani
5 James Sample, SS 6-2 191 Fr-HS Sacramento, CA/Grant
39 Greg Walker, FS 5-10 203 Jr-2V Bellflower, CA/St. Bernard
18 Greg Ducre, CB 5-10 173 Soph-1V Los Angeles, CA/Crenshaw
26 Anthony Gobern, CB 5-11 187 Jr-3V Fair Oaks, CA/Del Campo
21 Marcus Peters, CB 5-11 185 Fr-HS Oakland, CA/McClymonds

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Aug.
31st

Morning reading: Keith Price being Keith Price

We ran our Huskies preview section today leading with my story on Keith Price. I could have written plenty more words about Price (and I did) because he is such a good, likable kid.

But Price was humbled a little when he got to Washington and saw how difficult it is to play quarterback at the Division I level.

“It was harder than I thought,” he said. “There’s just so much to learn. There were times I didn’t know what I was doing.”

Washington’s offense is so multiple in its formations and route adjustments. And there are the multiple

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Aug.
30th

Tuesday practice report: Richardson practices again, Polk and Fogerson do not

Just a quick practice report since I’ve got a ton of writing to do for tomorrow’s paper.

Cornerback Quinton Richardson practiced again today. He had his ankle heavily spatted and still ran with a noticeable limp. I wouldn’t call it full participation. He didn’t do certain drills, including one on one’s with receivers.  During team drills, he worked in with the No. 2 defense. Defensive coordinator Nick Holt in the video above said it’s still too soon to know Richardson’s status for Saturday. My guess – at this time -  is that he will likely suit

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Aug.
30th

Know your enemy: Eastern Washington football release and depth chart

Since my alma mater is in the Big Sky conference, I’m more than a little familiar with the Eastern Washington Eagles. And since I still help cover and follow high school sports around the area for the TNT, I’m also familiar with the Eagles players since 60 of them are from the state of Washington and 41 from the Puget Sound. I think something like 23 of them were News Tribune All-Area players.

Here’s the weekly press release …

Here’s the Eagles depth chart …

#Returning Starter. *Has Used Redshirt season. %Injured.

No, Name, Ht, Wt, Yr, Ex, Hometown (Previous School)

OFFENSE

Left Tackle

60, #Gabriel Jackson:, 6-4, 280, Sr., 3L*, Tacoma, Wash. (Mount Tahoma HS ’06)

  • 73, Cody Humphrey: 6-5, 260, So., SQ*, Hermiston, Ore. (Hermiston HS ’09)

Left Guard

70, #Steven Forgette: 6-4, 280, So., 1L*, Vancouver, Wash. (Heritage HS ’09)

  • 74, Russell Turpin: 6-4, 290, So., SQ*, Kent, Wash. (Kentridge HS ’09)
  • 52, Drew Reynolds: 6-1, 275, So., SQ*, Tacoma, Wash. (Foss HS ’09)

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