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 defenses and coverage looks to learn to read in a moment’s notice.
“Sometimes all the information that is being thrown at you, it becomes almost paralysis by analysis,” Nussmeier said. “It forces guys to really work through the mental side of the game and gather it as they continue to play. You want it so they don’t freeze up as a player.”
Price tried to process and play. It wasn’t easy, but he never threw up his hands and gave up. You don’t quit on dreams.
“Keith went through his first season and into his first spring and I wasn’t quite sure when he would make the next step as a player,” Nussmeier said. “And all sudden we came back to fall camp and it was like the light switched on. He really got it and he really emerged as a player.”
We also did position breakdowns which have been formatted for the blog and will run in separate posts.
One of my favorite things to read each week is Pat Forde’s “Forde Yard Dash.” It’s a great, funny and informative potpourri of college football news. Here’s his first one of the season.
Before we get to the blocking and tackling of 2011, The Dash must bid goodbye and good riddance to a putrid, pestilential offseason. Time to give it a proper burial. Closed casket required.
How bad was it? So bad that the combatants in last year’s BCS Championship Game (Auburn and Oregon) both enter this season under NCAA investigation. So bad that scandals cost two elite coaches (Jim Tressel and Butch Davis) their jobs. So bad that even little old Boise State got Bus-ted for a compilation of misdemeanors. So bad that sunny Bill Stewart got run out of West Virginia for alleged character assassination of his successor-in-waiting. So bad that the SEC West summer chatter centered not on the division’s excellence, but on a brawl (two LSU players charged with felonies, one of them starting quarterback Jordan Jefferson) and a mall (where T-Town Menswear apparently had an uncomfortably cozy relationship with Alabama players). So bad that all of those things are minor brush fires compared to the Three Mile Island meltdown at Miami.
All things considered, this was the worst January-to-September run The Dash has ever seen.
As a yellow lab owner, I really, really hope this happens.
Pac 12 North
Cal: The Bears’ onfield success could rely heavily on five players, who hail from Greensboro, North Carolina. Oft-injured receiver Michael Calvin hopes to stay healthy this season.
Oregon: The retooled offensive line will face a major test against LSU. Columnist George Schroeder writes about the side-show aspect of the game that has been dubbed — the Willie Lyles Bowl — by some people..
Oregon State: Markus Wheaton practiced on Tuesday and said he’s playing. Defensive lineman Castro Masaniai is surprised to be playing this weekend. Other people might also be surprised for other reasons.
Washington State: Vince Grippi wraps up Paul Wulff’s Tuesday media session.
Pac 12 South
ASU: Montana native Brock Osweiler is preparing to start his first game at Sun Devil Stadium as the team’s No. 1 quarterback.
USC: Columnist Bill Plaschke writes that quarterback Matt Barkley deserves a good send off in what will likely be his final year with the Trojans despite being a junior.
After surviving two of the most difficult seasons endured by any Trojans quarterback, Matt Barkley can finally, truly call USC home.
Just in time for him to leave it.
Watch him closely for the next couple of months, because you probably won’t be seeing him around here again. Barkley is understandably hoping to use a second consecutive season with no bowl or championship hopes to obtain something even greater — an NFL future.
Despite the daily pleadings from his coach and what will certainly be an autumn’s worth of love from his fans, Barkley is probably in his final year here, and can you blame him?
He’s already a senior academically. By the time the year is finished, he will have given the school three seasons with only one turmoil-filled Emerald Bowl in return.
He’s done his time. He’s made his mark. Yes, he would become a campus legend if he stays in school to lead them out of probation next season, but who goes to college to become a campus legend?
UCLA: Head coach Rick Neuheisel said Kevin Prince will start at quarterback, but Richard Brehaut will also play in the opener against Houston. I’m sure that’s inspiring for UCLA fans.
Utah: Head coach Kyle Whittingham has been noticeably different this season, and it’s a good thing.