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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

August 24, 2007 at 12:38 PM

Getting defensive

A few of us had a chance to speak with UW defensive coordinator Kent Baer today about the state of that side of the ball.
The biggest news was his assertion that there is little chance that CB Byron Davenport will be able to play against Syracuse.
“I don’t see any way he’s going to be in there,” Baer said. “I don’t know how many practices he’s had, not very many, and he’s been out since then. That’s just missing too much. You can sit on the sidelines all day and study and try to figure out what you are doing and think you do. But showing up and doing it live is a whole different ball game. So I don’t see any way that’s going to happen with him.”
Baer said that would leave the starting spot to either Cory Nicol or Vonzell McDowell, though he said Nicol has also had a minor injury of late though he said he should be fine for the Syracuse game.
Baer also said Mesphin Forrester is the definite starter at strong safety though UW coach Tyrone Willingham had hinted the other day there was still heavy competition at that spot.
“He’s doing a good job,” Baer said. “I don’t think there’s any question.”
Baer said the other starting jobs still in question are the obvious ones — middle linebacker, where Donald Butler continues to be bothered by an injury, and weakside linebacker, where E.J. Savannah has the edge on Chris Stevens but where both will play a lot.
Baer, in fact, said one of his main concerns is thee youth at those two LB positions.
“We’re so young and there’s a whole lot to learn with that group,” Baer said. “I think we are going to make some mistakes, like most young kids would, and that’s a tough position. You’re not going to go through 100 percent in a game (without mistakes). The more veteran you are, the more playng time you’ve had, you will. You love to have veteran guys, especially inside guys, because they bring so much to the table especially in leadership and understanding the game plan. … But the good news is they are talented.”
Baer confirmed what we appeared to see yesterday, that Erick Lobos is moving into strong consideration to be a backup at defensive tackle, with Cameron Elisara and Jovon O’Connor also in that mix.
Baer said Lobos “has had a good camp. He seems a bit more active to me, seems to be having a bit more fun.”
Baer said he was mostly happy with the scrimmage on Thursday but said that the defense dropped too many balls, saying it was good that the team had its hands on so many but it needs to catch more.
He also said freshman Nate Williams is showing a lot of ability at strong safety but pointed out how young he is and that there’s a lot to learn at that spot, as well.

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