SEATTLE - Steve Sarkisian met a little later with the media Monday of the San Diego State opener,…
Dawg Blog - SDSU
Steve Sarkisian Full Thursday Video Interview
Below is the link you can check out for the full Thursday video interview with Steve Sarkisian.
Steve Sarkisian Full Thursday Video Interview
Steve Sarkisian Full Thursday Quotes
On if there are any personnel updates: "Status quo. The guys that are supposed to play will play and the guys that can't, won't.''
On if there are any limitations on guys coming off injuries such as Erik Kohler and Colin Tanigawa: "No, we will watch them closely but we are going in full go with all of our guys.''
On being able to use Chris Polk to run the clock down last year and hold a lead and where he thinks that will come from this year: "That's an interesting question and it's part of the new personality of our team that we have to find those kind of nuances within the game for our own personality. And some of that is going to come naturally and some of that we are going to have to create on our own through schemes or personnel groupings and things of that nature. I think a little bit of that remains to be seen. Obviously we feel great about what Jesse (Callier) and Bishop (Sankey) are bringing to the table. I feel even better this year than I have in the past about our quarterback and his ability to manage those situations within the game and maybe put a little bit more on him rather than just seeing 'you've got to run the ball and work the clock' and him making good decisions on when to run it and when to throw it and things of that nature. Go line of scrimmage with more two calls in mind and running the best play available. But definitely a chance in philosophy when you don't have just that workhorse back that you know can just kind of grind you out and pound you out. I think part of that for me is I have to get a feel for our guys when games get going and we get put into those situations, where to go with the ball.''
On if he enters openers having a pretty good feel for what his team will look like: "I think there is always curiosity. You feel like you've got a great handle. But things change when the lights come on. Some guys play better than they have played in practice and some guys don't play quite as good as they have practiced and so I try to go in with an idea of what might happen but I try also not to be shocked when things go a different direction than the way I envisioned. And you try to force the hand a bit, especially on offense as a play caller to generate some things for guys to get them in the flow of the game. But again, there is as much curiosity for me as anybody because some guys you just don't know. I know what 17 (Keith Price) is going to be like Saturday night. I know what Drew Schaefer is going to be like, No. 88 (Austin Seferian-Jenkins), No. 2 (Kasen Williams). We've got some other guys I'm not quite sure. We've got to figure it out.''
On the defense being a big curiosity and if he is as curious about that as well: "I'm excited to watch our guys play. I think we have made great strides. I love what we have done schematically and what we have done personnel-wise. And again we have to go play. And some things that have looked really good in training camp might not look as good, and some things that maybe we didn't think would be a huge part of our defensive scheme might look even better. And that's what we have to work through as the game gets going and who we are and what we are about and what our pass rush is like and how we cover and who is tackling and who is missing those tacklings that in practice we are blowing the whistle on and giving them the tackle. So there is a lot of information we have to gather early on. But I am excited to watch our guys play.''
On if Kevin Smith is one of the guys he has to watch early on to see how he holds up physically: "I think so. Kevin has made a tremendous return. I am so excited for him and fired up for him. He's had an unbelievable attitude about this and the way he has attacked the injury and the rehab. But again, he's got to play the game now and he's got to get tackled and hopefully we can get him into the flow of the game and see how he does.''
On if he is full go: "Yep, full ready to go.''
On attacking defenses that are known for creating turnovers: "Well you stress obviously protection of the ball and we work on our ball security drills and we stress to the quarterback of making good decisions with the ball and not trying to force things. And you know I think you have to try to combat some of their aggressiveness with your own aggressiveness. You can't sit back and just let them attack you. So we have to make sure that we are aggressive as well and that we are attacking them as much as they are attacking us.''
On Tre Watson being put on scholarship: "He earned it. We had one to offer, we had room and he earned it. He's done everything to work at this. I am always appreciative of guys that have a plan and are trying to get something done in their life and Tre did that. He's an awesome kid who works his tail off, not only on the field but in the classroom. I couldn't be more proud of him.''
On being the only one to get a scholarship this year: "Yes.''
On the other cornerbacks playing: "Well they are going to play. Again some of that remains to be seen, the flow of the game, what is happening in the game. But they are going to play for sure. First time for Marcus (Peters) really being on the field in a game so again, we just have to kind of play it by ear. We've got an idea of what we want to do but we've got to play it by ear as the flow of the game is going and what we are doing and what San Diego State is doing and how that dictates how we want to play.''
On spending time at SDSU - "I know what my office looked like - I was sleeping there most of the time, hadn't even moved down there yet. I know they have great facilities. By the time I was there they had just built that new building - I think it was a year old. Great facilities and good setup from a practice standpoint. It's a place where I've always thought could be really good. Growing up in southern California and being down there, to get those kids to stay home and to go to that school and live in that city - it's a great place to go. I always thought they could be pretty good and Rocky has done a tremendous job here kind of picking up right where Brady (Hoke) left off. They've done a nice job and they've got that thing going in the right direction for sure."
On how game day changes for them because they do travel to CenturyLink - "I think we'll be fine, I don't think it'll be an issue. This will be the fourth time doing the game there - from the Apple Cup last year to the spring game to the mock game this fall camp and now going there again - it just feels normal to our guys now. I don't see it as an issue."
On how hungry the team is going to game day - "I use the analogy earlier in training camp about the dogs on the porch and keeping them on the leash and then letting them off the leash… they were all kind of barking today about wanting to get off the porch and off the leash and let 'em go. I think they are excited. It's like anybody…anytime you keep banging heads with the same guy across from you, you're just kind of excited to go play somebody else. The key for us is to…I know we'll be pumped up, I know we'll be excited. But we need to be smart and we need to play smart football, something we've been stressing since Day One of this training camp, and not let our emotions get the best of us - especially early in the ball game. Play really smart football, whether that be scheme-wise, attitude-wise, the penalty stuff after plays - we just have to play smart football early on and then let the game come to us as we go - and I think we'll be able to do that."
On anything they can take from last year's opener - "I just thought in general we might have spent ourselves a little too much in the buildup to the game and I don't know if we had the right type of energy and enthusiasm that I'm accustomed to our team having once the game kicked off, so we'll try to monitor that a little bit better and build to kickoff rather than exhaust ourselves before the game even begins. And I think we can generate some of that ourselves and continue to be aggressive. We were a bit conservative last year early on - obviously new quarterback and trying to find our way - so from the opening snap we're going to try and be us and stay aggressive, whether that's offense, defense or special teams."
On Price having more on his plate at the end of last year - "Yeah, we got into it much more with the no huddle stuff about half-way through the year and then late into the year a lot and quite extensively in the bowl game. We're going to continue down that path. He's such a bright kid and he has such a high football IQ that he gives us that ability to do that type of stuff. It's a nice luxury to have."
On moving Erik Kohler around - "A little bit remains to be seen. I have to see how he plays. Micah Hatchie is going to play, Ben Riva is going to play for the first time really playing football. Micah has gotten in a little bit more…we have to see how it looks and how it plays out. There will be a lot of conversations on the headsets about where we're at and how we're doing - if a guy needs a spell or not. So a little of that remains to be seen. It's definitely a topic of discussion for us - it's on the table and it'll remain on the table throughout the ballgame."
On dressing less players because of CenturyLink - "We're a little limited locker space-wise. They don't have nearly as many lockers as we're accustomed to, so we won't be able to dress the entire team. We'll dress probably upwards of about 80 of the 105."
On the defensive line depth - "I think we're great. I love the depth we have up front on defense - on the d-line. We have some guys that are playing service team that three years ago may be starting for us. So we're in the right place as far as the numbers are concerned and staying fresh for four quarters and not having to exhaust guys early in the game. I feel good about that."
On Jamora and Cooper's surgeries today - "Yeah. One should be done and one should be starting pretty soon."
It's game week, so you know that means another scintillating edition of By-The-Numbers! Washington is back - and maybe even better than ever, but San Diego State plans on putting a wrench in the works. Do the numbers give them a snowball's chance in the Cascade Mountains? Check the digits out and see what you think.
Tre Watson awarded a scholarship
Steve Sarkisian announced this afternoon via Twitter and CoachSark.com that junior cornerback Tre Watson has been awarded a scholarship. To read more on this breaking news, click on the link below.
Tre Watson Awarded Scholarship
OD Vincent visits the Dawgman guys tonight
UW Senior Associate Athletic Director OD Vincent will join the Dawgman guys - Kim Grinolds, Chris Fetters and Scott Eklund - on Sports Radio KJR 950 AM and 102.9 FM from 7-9 pm Wednesday night at the Dub Pub in Kirkland to talk about the Husky Stadium renovation, as well as what to expect during Saturday's home opener versus San Diego State at CenturyLink Field.
For more information on our weekly KJR show at the Dub Pub, click on the link below.
Dawgman.com on KJR Wednesday Nights!
Wednesday Practice Spotlight
SEATTLE - Steve Sarkisian noted late Tuesday night on his Twitter feed that Wednesday would be 'Turnover Wednesday'. The Washington Huskies always try and work on forcing the ball out on defense and the 'Dawg Claw' on offense, but it took one particular play by a true freshman to get the party started in true UW fashion. Click on the link below to view the full story.
Wednesday Practice Spotlight
Wednesday Player/Coach Quotes & Video
SEATTLE - Dawgman.com spoke Wednesday with new UW Offensive Coordinator Eric Kiesau, as well as WR Kevin Smith and CB Tre Watson - grateful to be playing Saturday against San Diego State, but for different reasons. To read and video the interviews, click on the link below.
Wednesday Player/Coach Quotes & Video
Steve Sarkisian Wednesday Quotes/Video
SEATTLE - Washington Head Coach Steve Sarkisian met with the media on Wednesday and he talked about San Diego State's 3-3-5 defense, as well as some of the players UW fans will see on the field Saturday and the obstacles they've had to overcome to get to where they are today. To read the full update, click on the link below.
Steve Sarkisian Wednesday Quotes/Video
Tuesday Practice Spotlight
It feels like forever, but game week is finally here. And just like that big exciting trip that seems so far out in the distance that you don't think about it much, the event seems to come out of nowhere and you're scrambling to make sure all the little things are taken care of before you leave. Click on the link below for today's practice spotlight.
Tuesday Practice Spotlight
Player/Coach Quotes and Video
Spoke to Justin Wilcox, Peter Sirmon, Micah Hatchie and Austin Seferian-Jenkins on Tuesday. Here's what they had to say.
Player/Coach Quotes and Video
Rocky Long MWC Tuesday Teleconference Quotes
Opening comment - "We're all happy here it's game week. Training camp lasted too long I thought but I think our team is ready to play. We've got a great opportunity and a tough task ahead and Washington is a pretty good football team. We're playing there and we're playing in the pro stadium. I've heard it's the loudest stadium in the NFL. They'll have a huge home crowd, so we're looking forward for the chance to go up there and play well."
Still using the Punt/No Punt philosophy on fourth down? - "We had one of our professors in our business school on campus yesterday come over here and he had a system that we're thinking about using that he went over yesterday. We'll have a chart come game time and that will determine what we do in different situations."
Field goals using same chart? Like you might go for it on 4th and 3 at the 15? - "That's a strong possibility. We put in all of our statistics over the last four years on offense and defense, our success rate in field goals and field goal percentage, our success rate on punting, on our net punts - when we're not to the 50 yet, when we're trying to stick it inside the 10 - we've put that all into a formula, and that formula came out telling us by percentages what the best thing to do in different field position is. We haven't decided if we're going to go by the chart, but we have a chart in our hands right now."
Feedback from other coaches on punt/no punt? - "They haven't talked to me about it. There have been some that have called some of our assistant coaches and inquired about it and about how we were going about those things, but mostly no - no one has contacted me about it."
MWC teams playing marquee games and how important they are to the schools and league - "I think the coaches of the Mountain West have never been afraid to do that. If you looked over the last few years early in the season there's all kinds of those games going on where teams in the Mountain West have made a contract with some of the so-so 'big name' schools. Most of the time we play on the road and most of the time we perform very well. I think that gives credit to the league and I think that gives credit to the school that's willing to do that. As soon as the league gets on the scale where they can play home and home with those people, I think you'll see a 50/50 split in wins and losses too."
How important are those games in the context of recruiting - "I don't think it makes any difference as far as when you're competing with those schools in recruiting. I don't think it makes any difference whatsoever. I think when you're competing with similar schools, when you consider a school the same as you are and the same level as you are, I think it makes a big difference when you say you are playing in those places."
On Boise State's offense - "I think it's so multiple. They give you different personnel groups almost constantly. They line up in different formations and shift and motion and change around as you're trying to get your defense set. They keep you off balance. It'll be interesting to see how their new quarterback does. I thought the key to their offense over the last four years has been the quarterback. I thought he was as good a college quarterback as there has ever been. Now he didn't get the credit that maybe he deserved, but I thought he was as good as any quarterback that a team I was with has ever played against. It'll be interesting to see if they can still have the same productivity with a new quarterback, but their offense as a whole really keeps you on edge."
On how big a key is their misdirection and deception - "A lot of it is deception, so you're never comfortable. You can't overreact to anything because something might be coming back the other way. It doesn't seem like you're playing as hard and you don't run to the ball quite as hard because you're always worried about something else coming off of it. I don't think the offense is the key; I think it's the way they execute the offense that's the key."
Monday Player Quotes/Video
On his relationship with Leon McFadden - "I always thought Leon was a great player. He's one of my closest buddies, I still talk to him often. But it's a challenge this week. They have a really good defense and it's going to fun to line up against him again."
On if he's talked with Leon recently? - "Oh no. We haven't spoken. We understand the task that's in front of us, but we'll be buddies after the game. But right I'm preparing for them and he's preparing for us and we're trying to beat each other."
On SDSU's defense - "They like to mix around their fronts. They are pretty set on the back end in the secondary, but they play with a lot of aggression and try to mix you up with different fronts and over looks and under looks and odd looks and stick looks…that's the main thing.
On if they are like anyone he's faced before - "No. This is the first time going against a 3-3-5 defense, so it's going to be fun."
On if that means he's got to change his protection calls - "In a way. We just have to stick to our rules. If we stick to our rules we'll be fine and we'll be able to protect anything they throw at us."
On it being game week and taking hits - "Get rid of the ball. You've seen me get chewed up pretty bad a couple of practices this fall. I understand I need to stay healthy this season and I'm doing my best, but of course when you get out there and you just want to make plays and run around, so…"
On what to say to the true frosh when it's game time - "It's just like practice. Just go out there and do what you've been doing and do what got you here. I keep telling them that if you don't understand something just come to me. All season it looks like I'll be holding tutoring sessions all week."
On if it felt like practice when he started at Oregon - "It definitely felt a little bit faster than in practice. Obviously you can't simulate game speed, but once they get hit and banged around a couple of times they'll wake up."
On goals this season - "Obviously we're trying to win the Pac-12, that's our goal. Obviously we have to earn respect and we have to win games."
On what's different about the defense this year - "They enjoy playing with each other. I don't see a lot of bickering amongst each other and it just feels like they are having fun all over again."
On the speed of the defense - "Oh yeah. They are real fast. Shaq Thompson, Desmond Trufant, the secondary…these guys can run, and I think the speed, our defensive speed is a lot faster than last year."
On Shaq Thompson - "Man, there's a lot of things that I haven't seen with a guy that big that can move the way he does and the ball skills that he presents. He's definitely a tremendous talent and a great attribute to our defense."
On practice feeling different today - "Oh yeah. There was a sense of urgency. Guys were moving and guys were excited. We're just excited that we don't have to bang up on each other anymore. We can get ready for an opponent."
On a difference in the defensive attitude - "I see a different type of swagger. They are talking trash to us every day and we're competing against them every day. Of course we think we're better than they are and they think they are better than us - but I think that's great. I think competition brings out the best in us."
On CenturyLink - "It's loud just like Husky Stadium, but it's just another game."
On being more comfortable with Sark's play calling - "I feel like Coach Sark can just about throw just about anything at me. I'm prepared, and if I don't get it the first time I'm going to make sure I get it. I'm going to keep preparing and I'm going to make sure our receivers and our offensive line are up to speed on what we're doing as well. I think we have a very smart group offensively and we understand the schemes."
On issues with mechanics with the mock game - "The mock game was all the install that we had in camp, just thrown into one. So now we have game plan stuff, so now we know specific looks and specific plays that we're going to run for the game, so it's easier to narrow your focus down to just those plays."
On how his familiarity with Sark will help in this opener - "I'm not sure. I just know that we have to play better. It's not so much about opening up the playbook or whatever people want to say - it's just about executing our game plan. That's the main thing. If we do our job we have a pretty good chance of winning."
On the schedule and staying focused - "We're worried about San Diego State. We'll take care of week two, week three, week four later on."
On the defense : "I see speed. Not just pure speed, just knowing what's gonna come. Our knowledge of our playbook and what SDSU is gonna do, we are gonna look pretty fast our there."
On Justin Wilcox's defense: "It's different. You're gonna see a lot of different shifts. At the end of the day we have to go and produce on the field."
On seeing Ryan Katz before: "It's good. I've played a couple games against him. He's a good QB. Strong arm and accurate. He can move as well too. We just gotta keep the pressure on and make the plays."
On Tre Watson: "Tre had a great camp. I'm proud of him for what he's done. He came in as a walk on and then the next year he's starting. So I'm very proud of what he's done. He deserves the starting spot."
On his swagger level: "That's how I want it to be perceived. That I have confidence and that I believe in what the coach is doing. I think the whole defense is like that this year. Hopefully we can make improvements."
On the season opener: "The anticipation has been building. We've been here before and we just gotta execute our game plan and get ready throughout the whole week."
On CenturyLink Field: "It's a great atmosphere. It's a privilege and we are just gonna embrace it and we know what our fans are gonna bring to the table. The atmosphere is just electric in there and you feel the energy coming and it makes you just wanna go. The turf is fine. It's just a football field. It's a little different not seeing all of the fans walking to the game."
On Tre Watson: "Everyone has their own story and his hasn't been the easiest. He's a smaller guy who's always had a big man's mentality and it's paying off. He's a playmaker."
Player Video Interviews:
Jesse Callier - Click Here
Bishop Sankey - Click Here
Justin Glenn - Click Here
Sean Parker - Click Here
Keith Price - Click Here
Desmond Trufant - Click Here
Kasen Williams - Click Here
Steve Sarkisian Full Interview and video
Opening Comment - "Game week is upon us. It's always nice to have training camp and to get your young players better and develop as a team and to go through some of the adversity that we've had to go through already, but I think that helps shape your team, the personality of your ball club, it helps you prepare for the challenges that you're faced with along the way. I think we got dealt with our fair share of things early on, obviously from some of the injuries to guys moving around to some different positions. But the end result, I believe - we're better for it and we're excited to go play. I thought the guys brought a real sense of energy and enthusiasm and a little bit of an edge to practice today…we like to say the volume gets turned up on game week, and I think that was definitely evident today.
"Out for the ball game obviously Jamora, Cooper, Fellner, James Johnson, Jamaal Kearse, Cooper Pelluer. Jamora and Cooper will have surgery on Thursday.
"In regards to San Diego State, I have a great deal of respect for Rocky Long and what he's done with that program. I believe it's 17 wins over the last two seasons, two consecutive bowl games…nice pro style offense. We know Ryan Katz extremely well from Oregon State, athletic kid - quick release and a strong arm. They've got a nice corps of receivers he gets a chance to work with with Lockett and Brice Butler, who transferred from SC, and the tight end Gavin Escobar.
"Defensively a very attacking, aggressive style of defense. Obviously we know their 3-3-5 base, but they do a nice job of creating plays on that football team, evident last year with their plus-12 turnover margin. They've got a middle linebacker 42, I believe his it's Fely - I apologize if that's not pronounced properly. The corner McFadden was a kid we looked hard at when we first got hired - a teammate of Keith Price and Will Shamburger.
"So all that being said, what's going to be key for us that we remain who we are, to stay aggressive, to stay multiple and have a game plan that's conducive to our entire roster - that's veterans and young guys included - and do it with a real sense of urgency. And I believe that we can."
The list of injured players again - "Jamora, Cooper, Fellner, Johnson, Kearse and Pelluer."
On Ryan Katz - "We know that he's good. I guess there could be the unknown if the guy could play or not, but we know Ryan Katz is a capable quarterback. He's won games in the Pacific-12 Conference, tight ball games. He has ability to really throw the deep ball extremely well, which is they like to do in their offense. He's got a quick release and he's athletic. Outside of that they have an offensive system that's conducive to that type of quarterback. It was probably a good decision by Ryan to do what he did to go down there, I think he fits well."
On Keith Price - "I think we know what to expect out of him. Last year there was a bit of the unknown. I think for myself calling the plays: I know who he is. I know what he does well. I know when he's struggling the type of things I need to get him doing to get him back. I know that we won't be nearly as conservative the first game around as we were last year. We'll do some things that will hopefully give us a chance to take some shots down the fields. But also not force things down the field when they aren't there and get out of some bad plays.
"We are going to need to be able to do that. San Diego State has a got a multitude of fronts on defense. They do a nice job of pressuring the quarterback – a lot of line game stunts and pressures. This is a big fame for Keith in reconizing those pressures and not falling prey to some of the disguising they do and really be focused and still keepingthe tempo and the sense of urgency we need."
On the defense and having something to prove - "I think they want to play well. I don't know if it's about proving anyone wrong or right. I think they got rapport amongst one and another. I think they really respect their coaches and the new style of defense that we've inherited. At the end of the day, I think they want to play well for themselves, for our football program, for our university and for our fans. I'm sure there's a bit of a chip on their shoulder because they feel like they were better than they were last year. But man, our program isn't about what just happened. It's aobut where are we going and what are we doing. I think that's been the focus. If we get a little added incentive if they feel they have something to prove, I guess it is what it is."
On the SDSU 3-3-5 defense - "From an identification standpoint they can be challenging, you can't worry about the numbers, they got guys moving around playing different post. A guy might free safety one snap, the next snap he's blitzing off the edge. They can cause some hesitation for you if you are not really locked in and keyed into what you need to be doing. They aggressive nature hwne they rush the passer, they rush with a purpose, they really try to ge to the quarterback and create errant throws and creat turnovers."
How do see the quarterback in Timu when he is on defense? - "Just the checks. You know, we are a defense that relies on communication. That's why I like our defense. We just don't rely on one defense and that one call. We adjust to what you are doing. And I think it takes a real guy handling the front and a guy handling the back end and making those checks. And obviously that's John Timu up front for us and Sean Parker on the back end. Two key ingredients for us on the defensive side of the ball."
RB rotation will go how, exactly? - "They are going to get series. They are going to get carries by series. You are going to see 24 and 25. If I feel like another guy might be laboring you will see the other guy jump in. And you will see them in there together. I think we have a good plan in place for both those kids and hopefully put them in position to be successful. Then we will get a better feel for them as the game goes on, as well. Who can carry the ball three or four times? What does their body language look like. When they carry the ball what's their burst look like? So that will be key for us in our evaluation of them being every-down players, which is something they have been a little bit limited in doing -- in the first year for Bishop and the first two years for Jesse."
Different strengths each have shown in practice? - "Well, I don't want to disclose too much of that. They are very similar. They both are complete backs. I think sometimes when backs aren't 220 pounds they get labeled 'Oh, they are scat backs.' They run with power. They get behind their pads. They are excellent pass protectors. Very high football IQs for both of them, and they are both able to catch the ball out of the backfield. I don't think they are one dimensional. They almost look alike at times in their stature on the field. Maybe just the 4 and the 5 separate them. We will see what it looks like on game day."
QB's listed as Miles and Brown co-backups - "I want them to keep battling and keep competing. I think sometimes guys can be labeled a backup and he prepares like a backup. I want these guys to continue to compete. I think they have earned the opportunity to potentially be that guy, and hopefully throws a nugget out for both of them to keep battling, to keep competing and to keep their noses in the playbook and stay locked into this thing."
How important is Sean Parker? - "Very important. We have a guy who is in the third year with us, who is very bright. He has changed his body immensely. He came in and I don't know if he really understood the weight room and the whole offseason. And now he looks great, looks fast, was a playmaker ALL of training camp. Interception after interception, he was making them. He is a big, big factor for us. We need him for sure."
On when Sean Parker 'got it' - "I'd like to think by this spring. New system new scheme. I think Keith Heyward has done a great job coaching Sean and teaching Sean. Teaching from a cerebral stand point. He wants to be a special player but he's getting taught a very cool way that's just pushing the right buttons for him now."
On being excited about the freshmen WR - "Well hopefully I'm excited. You never know - they're freshman. They've earned this right to start and play. They've had a tremendous fall camp big play after big play. Again with freshman we're going to have to go through growing pains. They're going to lineup wrong a couple times Saturday night. They might drop a pass they might run a wrong route. But we got to be able to bring them along but their big play potential makes us different offensively. It's something that we want to become we want to be a big play offense one that can get yards in chunks. Those two guys [Kendyl Taylor and Jaydon Mickens] provide that for us. I'm excited for the big plays and I'm a little bit reserved on some of the mistakes that can occur Saturday night"
On best case scenario for Hau'oli Jamora - "I don't know. You know will all this stuff injuries are injuries. Everybody want percentages when a guys back. I know he's unable to perform right now. Hopefully we can get some really good information out of Thursday. Whether its for this year or moving forward for his future, his career. I know we sorely miss him not only what he brings as a play-maker on the field but a real leader up front on the defensive line. But we'll see how it goes."
On throwing down the field - "I don't know necessarily if we're going to throw it down the field more. I don't want to make that statement that that's what we're going to do. What I think we can bring, what these two guys can bring is when they catch balls they can create bigger plays with the separation that they can get on the defensive backs or linebackers whoever that may be. From a game planning stand point it's understanding who your play-makers are. How we going to get them involved so they feel involved in the ball game. Obviously that's Austin, that's Kasen that's Jaydon that's Kendyl that's the two backs. Before that was Jermaine that was Devin. That's how we've changed. We're going to run what we run. I don't think that's a real secret. We have an offense in place that we believe in that's stood the test of time. There's always going to be some wrinkles to keep the defense guessing but we're going to run what we run.
Does it help the team that they've still had a consistent message even with so many coaching changes? - "Well hopefully it's a consistent message from me that what the players are hearing from me is one that hasn't wavered from the day I arrived until this morning's team meeting. We have some hard and fast beliefs that we live by and now I feel that we really have the leaders in place that have been hearing the same consistent message and it can be reiterated in the locker room without a coach having to say it. To continue that we had to get these new coaches to buy into some of those philosophies as well. But hopefully the real messaging and the beliefs and the philosophy that we live by are consistent from me and they know that I am not wavering and they don't need to waver off of those.''
On the special teams and the battery from snap to hold to kick - "I feel good, I feel good. Travis (Coons) had an excellent day this morning again. I think Korey (Durkee) has had his best week of training camp this last week, took him maybe a little longer than Travis in getting his comfort level right back there. But he had an excellent week punting the ball and had another great one today. So I feel much better today than I did probably two weeks ago when I was a bit uneasy about it. But again, first time a guy going back, first time a guy snapping, I will be as watching as closely as anybody else to see how we respond in the moment.''
And kickoffs? - "The new rule is one that you have to live by the rules and I think there are some intricacies to the rules to still be effective covering kicks. We've got some good guys running down to cover those kicks so I think we can be effective there. And in the return game I like what we've brought with some of our new faces that are back there returning some kicks and some of the older faces as we have started to gradually work them in the second half of training camp as well.''
On Tre Watson and his emergence - "He just keeps making plays, you know. It's hard to deny a guy that just keeps making plays that even when he might get beat has the ability to punch the ball out. He does it. It's a knack that he has that is unique to him, and not that (Greg) Ducre and (Marcus) Peters didn't have good camps, and you are going to see them play --- I just think Tre had a really good training camp. Now the goal for him and for us is to carry that right over to the game day and not change and we'll see how that goes Saturday..''
On the true frosh that will play - "Well, in general, I can give you the one that I know for sure are going to play. And as the season goes on, things change. I know that Kory Durkee's gonna punt. I know that Shaq Thompson is going to play. I know Jaydon Mickens is going to play, I know Kendyl Taylor is going to play, I know Pio Vatuvei is going to play. Those five guys, I can assure you will play. The rest of them, time will tell. As they develop, as we get an assessment of our team through Game 1, as injuries could occur, things can change. I'm a realist that way. But as of right now, five guys will play.
Perkins and Willis, will they be eligible to play? - "Yes."
On Playing at CenturyLink Field and the biggest change - "The biggest change for me, that I'm hopeful for, is this is the second time that our fans get to go, and their comfort level. We looked up the stat today, and there's been 111 false starts since 2005 for the Seahawks in that stadium against their opponents, and I'd like to think that we can kind of reap the benefits of that as well, that as our fans get comfortable with the tailgaiting and what time to get into the game and where their seats are and all that, that we can kind of feed off of that crowd noise as well. I think that's the biggest change. For our guys, they've been in that locker room four times now. Once they get on that sideline and get going, they're fine. It's: I want to make sure our fans are there and fired up and we're utilizing a homefield advantage at a place where it can be utilized."
Steve Sarkisian Full Monday Video
Steve Sarkisian Coach's Show Full Notes
Gas brings in the show. Said other than LB injuries good fall? Sark said yes. Other than some major things like Fellner and those guys everyone is healthy. Injuries are going to happen in football - but if you can have them early it's a lot better than later as you get closer to game. If you're going to get them, get them early.
Gas - theme of now having a core of 'your' guys on the team. Sark said they've never had a depth chart this 'thick'. Before it was scary. Like the position of where they are and the leadership. Schaefer, Price, Bruns, Trufant - guys that have been there from the start - great leadership. Persevered through hard times but also understand the message. It's who they are now. He likes the team and they have to perform, but he likes where they are at.
Bob talked about Raise the Woof - Sark made the comment that this is the best team he's had since being here. Is it going to plan? Sark said it feels like it. Wish you could go out and win every game but didn't happen. Had some bumps in the road and tough losses, but that's what shapes you and keeps you going. Have responded well to them and feel great about the team. Wish we could have had three games back in 2009 but the way battled back in 2010 to get to a bowl and how we developed offensively last year to now...hopefully the next phase is that the defense gets better. Specialists have gotten better first three years and should be even better this year.
Predictions are great for the fans to get people excited...I'm the first one to buy the pre-season mags, but at some point you've got to go play. Have to perform in all the games, not just the big ones.
Bob talked about adversity, including changing the coaches - Sark said it was difficult. Said when he first got here he wanted to hire the best staff possible and thought he did that. They are still good coaches but for whatever reason it didn't work out. Hardest part is to take off the friend hat and put on the coach hat and do what's best for the school. Hired some great young coaches. Wilcox, Sirmon, Lupoi, Heyward and Kiesau - I think we're better for it today.
Bob said it's part of the business. And it's more a business than ever before. It's got to be tough as a young coach. Sark said emotions are emotions and I don't know if it'll get any easier. Not just getting to a bowl game is good enough. On track to be better than that, and you have to make tough decisions along the way. Today I still feel it was the best decision for us, but time will tell.
Bob talked about the Alamo Bowl - one of the great games in history from an offensive standpoint. Sark said that the first thing people want to talk about was how well we didn't play defensively. If we win that game by a score the first thing brought up would have been Keith Price in one of the best bowl games of all time. And that's the difference between winning and losing.
Gas brings the show back talking about leaders. Two guys stood out - Schaefer and Glenn - two of the guys still here from the Willingham era and especially 2008. They've come a long way. Sark said Bruns, Schaefer, Long, Glenn - these guys and what they've endured, they can take something special from it. Weren't in a great place when we got going, and we've had some cool moments. They believe we're on the right track and hopefully we can send them off with something special.
Bob talked about the rejuvenation of Husky Stadium - Sark said the music used to be a distraction, but now it's the cranes and hammers. If one of those cranes ever fell over while we were practicing...it's motivating to watch it literally being built as we're building our season.
Bob talked about playing at CenturyLink and making it a great home field experience - We're fortunate that we get to play in a state of the art stadium that's not very far away. Think about Cal having to play in San Francisco. This one is right downtown and we want to reap the same rewards that the Seahawks do in terms of loud crowds. Also glad it's only for a season, looking forward to getting back to Husky Stadium.
Bob talked about Rose Bowl and how UCLA has to travel from Westwood, but they also have the best home record going into 2012 so far. Sark didn't know that.
Bob asked about Keith Price - sound bite from Price about how he had to hang in there last year with injury and how that helped him with his teammates. Bob said not only got the gaudy numbers, but he earned a lot of respect. Sark said he's an amazing competitor and how much he competes at everything. Every throw matters - it became a way of life for him and we're reaping the benefits of that as a team.
Bob talked about the relationship between Sark and Price - Sark said he didn't know what he was getting from Keith and probably handcuffed him a bit against EWU. Now it's Keith engineering things this year. There's a couple true frosh getting ready to play WR and a lot of that could be attributed to Keith getting them ready to play.
Bob asked about Mickens and Taylor - Sark said they are young, dynamic players with high IQ. Price saw it in the summer and worked hard with them to get them ready. We have to see how they'll respond Saturday but they have the right personality about them.
Bob talked about the same scenario with Kasen Williams last year and how he's a grizzled vet now. Sound bite from Kasen - he talks about the little nuts and bolts he's refined to get to the next level - Sark said he's very mature from a year ago. Great transition for him on and off the field. Seeing it in his blocking. Playing hard and playing fast. Probably took longer than they'd like and the ankle injury last year didn't help but he's there now. His energy and ability to play fast and physical and running precise routes means he's taking the next step. The professionalism he's bringing is tremendous.
Gas brought show back in asking about 2-TE sets - Sark said the group is strong this year with ASJ, Harvy, Hudson and Josh Perkins - as well as Alec Kimble. More 2-TE sets than in previous years.
How easy or difficult is it to determine character at such a young age during recruiting - Sark said you try and do as much background stuff as you can to find that out. Said he's got 105 young men he's concerned about and sometimes they'll make bad decisions, but they try to do everything they can to make sure they get good kids.
How different will the defense look? - Sark said you can only line up so many different ways but hopefully fans will see a different way of playing. Have to be good on first down to force longer yardage situations where they can then get aggressive in getting to the QB.
Gas brings the show back in talking about San Diego State - only third time the two teams have met. Last time was in 1998. UW has won both times. Bob said Aztecs ran into a couple of good UW teams - one of them was ranked No. 1 in the country.
Bob brought talk back to the offense and the RB's - Sark said we'll be different without Polk. He loved contact and getting the YAC. Calllier and Sankey are different backs. They are looking to create big plays. They show plenty of toughness in pass pro and blocking and are both better than average catching the ball. That's the unique nature of college ball - you get new guys and you have to fit to the personnel. We'll have to do some of that with the RB's and also with the WR's. With smaller WR's like Mickens and Taylor, they'll look different compared to Kearse and Aguilar.
Bob asked about Polk and how tough that was to watch him go undrafted - Sark said by the end of it all I didn't have to agonize after every pick because we had Spring Game then. If I had to watch it all I would have thrown the TV out of the window. It only takes one team to like you - but it didn't happen with Chris. Sound like he's doing well with Philly and he's got a chip on his shoulder. Don't know if there was a bigger program changer than Chris. Jake was great, but CP was a real steadying force throughout.
Bob talked about the OL and how the numbers were low in spring but that's gotten better in the fall. Sark said they were prepared to give Drew looks at LT and Kohler at center, but Erik's dislocated knee put a wrench in that. But Hatchie and Riva have surprised him. James Atoe has had a great camp. He's going to play. Charles is a bright prospect. The guys that are going to redshirt - some real promise there. Only starting one senior this year but he's as good as they come. Sophomore LT, LG, RG and RT - so the future is bright.
Bob talked about the Defense. He got a sound bite from Sean Parker not wanting him to ask about last year and how he's just looking forward. Sark agreed. When you see them play you can be critical of individuals when the team isn't playing well but Sean had a really good year. Tru led the league in pass breakups, Shirley had 8.5 sacks, the leader coming back in the Pac-12. Wilcox has done a nice job of getting the defense to play as one and they are playing really fast and getting to the ball. And when they are getting there they are finishing the plays.
The big guy on the mic - wants to ask Scott Woodward if he gets some credit for the Crazy Larry ticket campaign. Asks the panel about what it's going to take to get fans to CenturyLink Field. Sark said half the people that think they might be able to watch the game on TV may not be able to with pending deals with DirectTV and the like. He said it's a great opportunity to experience something different for a year. Fired up to play some great games and he thinks they have a team that will be exciting to watch - capable of big plays. Will bring it Saturday night and expect the fans to do the same.
Bob went back to the defense and talked about the linebackers and all the movement - Sark said that schematically they are a little different. Bigger inside with the big DL's and they are going to try and force the ball to the perimeter where the quicker, faster LB's and secondary will be able to track and make plays. They want to eliminate the ability for OL to get to the second level to block.
Bob talked about how there's a lot of spread offenses but there's still some teams that might want to pound it - and SDSU might want to do that. Sark said that they have more versatility to play big or small and put different personnel out there to face what they see on the other side of the ball.
Bob talked about the new defensive coaches and how they have great conference and NW ties - Sark said when we made the decision to make a change he wanted to hire the best available coaches. They know what UW football is all about - they grew up watching UW football. They know what Husky Stadium is about and what the community is about. They wanted to be a part of the program because they see something special brewing.
Gas brings the end of the show back talking about kick and punt returns - Sark said you'll see Mickens doing both. Shaq will do KOR. Callier and Smith will also be back there. Kasen will be at PR. Won't see him on every single snap on offense which will help him be fresh for PR.
Bob talked about the new specialists. Sark said he likes Coons a lot - probably more accurate than originally thought. Big leg. Durkee has had his best week of work this past week. Have to get them through the jitters to see what they are really all about.
Bob talks about SDSU - 8-5 last year, bowl team. Sark said Rocky Long has done a great job. Pro style offense, lot like UW. Ryan Katz is their QB, played at Oregon State. Aggressive on defense. Plus-12 on turnover ratio, so they get after it. They went toe-to-toe with Michigan, so they won't be awed.
Bob talked about Leon McFadden who went to high school with Keith Price. Sark said he looked hard at McFadden, who was in the same class as Will Shamburger. Sark said he's a great kid but hopefully they get to him a couple of times.
Bob talked about last year's opener and how he imagines the team remembers the game. Sark said they are more mature this year, and even though they are young on paper they've played a bunch of games. Five new coaches will also be fired up to get their UW careers off to a good start. Have to take care of the ball, create some short fields on defense and he said he's going to hammer on the team about avoiding the dumb penalties. Have to keep emotions in check.
Bob wishes Sark well for the season. Sark said it's going to be fun.
Gas said the team gets to spend some time on the nicest house in the block, so go have fun.
End of show.
San Diego State's depth chart versus Washington
For those fans that are interested in what San Diego State looks like as they head to Washington Saturday night to face the Huskies.
San Diego State depth chart versus Washington
Information on Parking and Transportation for Game Day to CenturyLink Field
For those fans looking for information on Game Day at CenturyLink and the easiest/most convenient way to get there for all the UW home games, click on the link below.
Information on Parking and Transportation for Game Day to CenturyLink Field
UW Depth Chart Released
Washington's depth chart for the San Diego State game has been released. You can see it, as well as the discussion on what it all means at the link below.
UW Depth Chart versus San Diego State
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