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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

September 1, 2009 at 9:36 PM

Tuesday night practice report — Christine excited for opportunity

The Huskies are off the field after their second straight night practice in preparation for the season-opener under the lights Saturday against LSU.
It was also the second straight practice for Greg Christine as an anointed starter at left guard, something he admitted afterward wasn’t really in his thoughts when camp started three weeks ago.
“Definitely not,” he said.
But the walk-on junior from Camarillo, Calif., earned his spot with what coaches uniformly describe as a great camp.
“This is something we came to (thinking) it gave us the best opportunity to win at this point in time,” said UW offensive coordininator Doug Nussmeier. of the offensive line shuffle. “But as you see at practice, we are always interchanging those guys to keep the different combinations working. .The great thing is those guys are starting to build communication and the more they move around, the more they are building communication with each other.”
For Christine, the starting nod is the culmnation of a journey that began in 2006 when he turned down scholarship offers at a couple of smaller-division schools (University of Sioux Falls and the University of North Carolina at Pembroke) to walk-on at UW.
“I wanted to play big-time ball and I didn’t want to be across the nation,” he said. “I wanted to be closer to home and my head (high school) coach told me I could play Pac–10 ball and I believed him.”
He had also talked to coaches at UCLA, but when the Bruins signed a handful of offensive linemen that year, Christine sided with UW, which he said pursued him avidly as an invited walk-on and seemed to offer a greater opportunity.
He’s been paying his way the last three years, saying he’s taken out a number of loans. He’s hoping now he might have a scholarship coming though he hasn’t heard anything yet — with school still four weeks ago, such decisions are not yet set.
“I’m praying,” he said.
But he also said he feels like now he has more to prove, that he deserves his place in the lineup.
He has played in just one game, on the field for the last 13 snaps of the season finale at Cal last season.
“Thirteen snaps that I’ve watched 300 times,” he said. “I told myself when I walked on the field what coach (Mike) Denbrock had told me, which is these might be the only 13 snaps I ever get of collegiate football and I need a story to tell my kids and to take advantage of that.”
He’ll have even material after facing LSU.
“It’s a big-time game,” he said.
One for which his coaches feel he’s ready.
Asked what he did to impress the coaches during camp, Christine said “what they said —accept coaching. That’s the biggest thing you will hear from them — accept coaching. That’s what you’ve got to do.”
— The team practiced in full pads for about two hours.
— DT Cameron Elisara again sat out practice while nursing a shoulder injury and was replaced by De’Shon Matthews. Also still out were S Jason Wells, CB Matt Mosley and OLs Skyler Fancher and Terence Thomas.
— In better injury news, TE Kavario Middleton (hamstring) and CB Justin Glenn (knee) were in full pads if still a little limited. Each took part in contact drills but Middleton said he’s still getting back to full health. “Getting there,” he said. “Tomorrow I should be able to go full speed and get game ready.”
— There was no official word that Nick Wood has moved from defense to offense with coach Steve Sarkisian not available to the media after practice. However, Wood worked for the second straight day with the offense and indications are that he has indeed made that move. Wood is a 6-3, 273-pound sophomore who had been playing DT.
— PK Erik Folk was again spotty hitting just 2-5, all from inside 46 yards. Two hit uprights, including one that went through.
Vonzell McDowell was the first one to go out with the starting defense at the CB spot opposite Quinton Richardson, an indication that he’s likely to get the start there ahead of true frosh Desmond Trufant (Glenn could also factor in once he gets back to full health, though he did rotate in at times today). However, Trufant turned in one of the plays of the day, tipping a Ronnie Fouch pass that LB Cort Dennison then dove and picked off. The defense erupted in what was the loudest cheer of the night.
— The team will again practice tomorrow night at 7 p.m.
All for now.



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