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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

September 15, 2007 at 7:01 PM

Ohio State post-mortem

The theme of the players and coaches after this one was in large part “what might have been.”
“Just to be able to have the opportunity we had coming into the game today and kind of letting it slip through our hands,” said UW quarterback Jake Locker of his emotions.
The stats show the Huskies were pretty soundly beaten — Ohio State had 481 yards to UW’s 346, and 263 rushing, the third-highest total against a Tyrone Willingham-coached UW team.
But the Huskies also felt that they had plenty of chances to win the game.
“We had opportunities,” Willingham said. “We just didn’t take advantage of them. Really, that was the game. When you play a good football team, sometimes you’re not able to take advantage of all the opportunities.”
What also bothered Willingham was how the Huskies responded once some adversity hit.
“What we stress is that when they (mistakes) happen, you’ve got to bounce back, and we didn’t bounce back at those critical times, and that’s my disappointment,” he said.
“Those kinds of swings happen with every football team. The good ones rally, and that’s what we’ve got to get to being, that better football team that has that mental toughness to not have that kind of swing.”
A FEW OTHER NOTES:
— Willingham said Dan Howell practiced during the week but that his sore knee, which he strained in last week’s game, didn’t allow him to go full out and it was decided during warmups not to play him. Kyle Trew got the start, the first of his career, and made three tackles.
Brandon Johnson apparently suffered bruised ribs in practice Thursday which is why he didn’t play.
Louis Rankin said he’s fine and that his ankle wasn’t an issue today.
— Willingham said Anthony Russo, Wilson Afoa and Jason Wells all suffered injuries to some degree but that all finished the game. Russo said the cut on his hand from the surgery he had last month reopened but that he was fine. His touchdown catch came after that happened, he said.
Tim Lappano’s assessment of Jake Locker was that this was simply “some of the growing pains” that were to be expected. He said Locker’s second and third interceptions each came when Locker made the wrong read. The one by James Laurinaitis in the third quarter — the one where Laurinaitis dropped back into coverage — would have been a TD to Russo if Locker had seen him, Lappano said.
— Lappano said the drive where the Huskies got to the 9-yard-line and then there were two handoffs to Paul Homer each came on option read plays where Locker had the option to keep it himself if he wanted.
— Overall Lappano said Locker had never seen a defense as fast as Ohio State’s. “Boise State’s a good football team, but the speed of the game down there (against Ohio State) was nothing like he’s ever seen,” Lappano said.
Kent Baer said many of the draw plays Ohio State ran to great success late came out of a formation in which the Buckeyes had previously usually passed. He said he thinks his players bit on the pass too quickly and were not in the right spots. “We didn’t fit those plays well,” he said.
I’ll be back with my grades soon.

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