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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

August 30, 2009 at 5:31 PM

LSU game week answers, volume two

Like Norm always said, another round. …
Q: Without giving your actual prediction, as that will likely be saved for Saturday, but, you have said that you think it will be a high-scoring affair. My question is, why do you think it will be high scoring? I get that LSU might put some points up (although I think our new D and some serious crowd participation will help a lot). But, given that your reports seem to favor the defense winning the daily competitions most of the time, why to you think our offense will score a lot of points on LSU? is it a) Jake Locker in live action makes that much of a difference or b) you are not sold on LSU’s defensive makeover or c) some other intangible like early season road game, late night, etc., or d) other.
A: It’s a lot of A, a little of B and a little of D. I definitely think live-action Locker, with the wraps taken off, will make the UW offense look a lot better than it has than at any point since the BYU game a year ago, when the Huskies put up 27 points against what was a pretty good defense. I also think that LSU’s offense looks to be better than its defense, so I think the Tigers are going to score some points on the Huskies. As you note, LSU’s defense was its weak link last year. And while it looks on paper to be a lot better this year, I think a first game, and being on the road, means it may not be in top form yet and afford the Huskies some opportunities to score. As to the reports that the UW defense has seemed ahead of the offense, I’ve found that defenses often look better than offenses in early-season camp and scrimmages. QBs are down on the touch, there is often a quick whistle to prevent injury, and offenses rarely have the element of surprise because the defense knows what’s coming from practicing against the same offense every day. Also, almost every live-scrimmage is some sort of situational drill that can skew the perception of the offense — every play from inside the 20, or something, where it’s hard to pass, that sort of thing. So I just think it adds up to a higher-scoring game than 10-7 or something.
Q: Do you get a sense that Jake will stay on through his senior year ? A decent team season and some post season awards might propel him to the pros and a terrible repeat may have him consider baseball. Your thoughts ?
A: You are right about both scenarios and we really have no way to adequately answer any of that now other than hypothetically, except to point out that Locker himself has said nothing but that he is fully committed to finishing his football career at UW. There’s no reason not to believe him, so I’ll be pretty surprised if he’s not back for his senior season.
Q: What is the real feeling in the athletic department regarding disappointing ticket sales? I know the LSU game is a near sellout but I was surprised to read how many unsold tickets there are for USC, WSU and other big games. A familly member just went on line and bought WSU game tickets fairly high up but in section 44! I was shocked. I know the economy really stinks and the big game tix are up to $70 but this really is
disappointing. Anything from UW AD Scott Woodward on that issue? And with all games on TV, unless there are some early season upset wins, it is hard to see the home field advantage “packed house” days returning anytime soon.

A: I did talk to Woodward the other day and this was among the topics we discussed. He said he hoped UW would get a little more of a bump in ticket sales but that he was also realistic that a team that has lost 14 in a row combined with a slumping economy weren’t going to help. So I don’t think it’s any great surprise. If the team starts winning, the fans will come back. As for the impact of TV, I’d say the same thing — if the team starts winning, all the seats will be filled regardless. Given everything else that comes with TV — the money and the exposure, basically — you don’t turn that down. And it’s also worth noting that despite having the worst season in school history, the Huskies ranked fourth in the Pac-10 in attendance last year behind USC, UCLA and Arizona State. Again, win some games and everything will be fine.
Q: It seems to me that the UW its wasting time when it goes to Olympia and asks the ttate to fund the renovations to Husky Stadium, especially when the economy is struggling. It is never going to happen. Last I heard, the school needed about $150 million…why doesn’t the school pursue other avenues now, instead of waiting until they are denied once again?
A: The simple answer is that Woodward and the other powers that be disagree with you and don’t think it’s a waste of time. They talk to lots of people in the Legislature all the time and have obviously gotten enough of a vibe from someone that it’s worth trying again. I haven’t hearrd what the exact strategy is for going back to the Legislature again, but they obviously think there are some things they can do differently this time that will mean a different result. And your point about the economy may actually be the answer to your other question. I think there’s a thought that it will be a lot easier to raise money independently once the economy turns around. And again, remember that this has always been a 50-50 deal — they are hoping to get half the money they need from the Legislature and the other half through private funding. They have apparently spent a lot of time behind-the-scenes laying the groundwork for the private funding effort. But they have wanted to see exactly what they had to ask for before proceeding on that front. And I think any chance to have $150 million handed to you is probably worth taking another shot.
More later.

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