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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

October 20, 2009 at 11:50 AM

Sarkisian and Kelly conference call notes

Steve Sarkisian and Chip Kelly were back-to-back on the Pac-10 coaches conference call today — just the way the order works every week — so I’ll pass along the highlights from each:
— In what may be the only real news, Kelly said QB Jeremiah Masoli practiced again today and “he looked good today, too.” A reporter then tried to have some fun with Kelly’s general statement that every injured player is “day-to-day” and asked if he was a little more “dayer-to-dayer today.” Kelly agreed that “he’s a little more dayer-to-dayer today.”
— There were lots of questions about the nature of the rivalry for both Sarkisian and Kelly and the fact that this will be the first game as head coach for each in this game. Sarkisian said much the same as he did yesterday so I won’t repeat all of it. In one comment, Sarkisian said: “I’m very aware (of the history of the rivalry) and it’s one that has gone on for years and gone back and forth and obviously Oregon has had a great run right now but we are expecting it to be an exciting day at Husky Stadium.”
— Sarkisian also said he knows it is big for the fans and ex-players but that he’s also focusing on the fact that “this game means a lot in our conference this year. Oregon is on top of the conference and we are trying to get back in the race, so this is a big game for us.”
— Asked about continuing to come back each week from down-to-the-wire finishes, Sarkisian said “it’s actually getting easier. … to me it makes me very proud that our guys play hard no matter what the score is, wall the way through to the very end. And in turn, we are in every ball game. We have come a long way from a mental standpoint. We are a mentally tough football team and I’m proud of the way we have played the first half of the season.”
— Asked about preparing for two Oregon QBs, Sarkisian said the Huskies will just “practice for their scheme. Their systems don’t change.”
— Asked the keys to beating the Ducks, he said taking care of the football and “scoring touchdowns when we get in the red zone. We can’t settle for field goals because you know that offense is going to move the ball. So we have to do those two things really well.”
— Kelly, when asked about the difference in the Huskies this season, mentioned how hard they are playing. “They are just playing with a lot of energy and enthusiasm and I think Sark has done a great job getting those kids to play very hard. And that’s the mark of a good football coach, how hard do they play in all three phases, and they are playing hard.”
— Asked to elaborate on that, he said there are some “drastic X’s and O’s differences” in what UW is doing this season but said he comes back to the biggest difference being how hard the Huskies play. “You show me someone who is doing a good job coaching, it’s ‘is he getting his players to play hard? Is he getting the maximum out of what his players can do?’ And he is certainly doing that. … He is getting his players in position to make plays, I think that’s the biggest difference right now.”
— Kelly said he won’t approach this game any differently than any other, saying they are all important in how the season goes. “I think some people would be happy if we finished 2-9 and beat Washington and Oregon State,”’ he said. “But we would be very disappointed as a program. … We don’t put any more stock in this game than another and by that I don’t mean to diminish it, but we put everything we have into every game. We haven’t done anything different in terms of our approach. It’s a league game, it’s on the road, and that’s enough to get our players up and excited for practice.”
— Kelly also said he “loves that stadium” referring to Husky Stadium. “We went up there two years ago and it’s one of the neat places to play and I know it’s going to be rocking and our players are excited about that.”
All for now.

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