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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

July 11, 2010 at 8:23 PM

July answers, volume two

What do the Huskies have to do for Jake Locker to win the Heisman. And more!!!!
Q: How many games will the UW have to win for Jake Locker to have a real chance to win the Heisman?
A: History indicates win at least nine games. Every winner since 1987 has played for a teaam that won nine or more games. That streak dates to Tim Brown, who played for Notre Dame (which is probably worth a win or two in these things) and won eight games. Anything less than nine and I think you can write it off. Realistically, UW probably needs to win 10 or 11 for Locker to really have a chance — it just generally takes that kind of season to actually win the award (heI think he could get “on the podium” —- meaning a top five finish — with eight or so, depending on his numbers). He also needs to win the right games, and especially early, when the tone for these things is set. I’d think it would be hard to take it without winning the BYU and Nebraska games (or at least playing incredibly well if UW were to lose one of them).
Q: What’s a silent verbal and what is its purpose?
A: A silent verbal is when a recruit commits to the coaches of a school but doesn’t talk about it publically. To me, that usually makes it not quite a verbal, since I think the whole point of a commitment is to, well, actually make a commitment, and I’m not sure how you do that unless you tell people. When a guy calls the media (or happily talks to reporters that call him) and says he’s committed, those are the commitments I think you can start to put in pen.
But I do hear occassionally from players who say they had been a silent verbal to a school for a while before telling anyone.
The purposes of a silent verbal could be several. One would be if the recruit thinks his commitment could make waves of some sort and maybe he doesn’t want to deal with it yet. Another could be wanting to take trips and thinking that if he goes public with it, the other schools won’t offer him those trips (though that obviously raises the question of just how committed he is in the first place).

I think coaches go along with this only for really elite recruits, guys for whom it’s worth it to jump through a few hoops — and really, it’s no different than just simply having to continue to recruit the guy. I don’t think your two-star in-state guy with only three other offers or something is going to play that game. Generally, coaches want the player to go public with it to create positive news and momentum for a class and also to send a message to other coaches recruiting that player.
Sometimes, a silent verbal could be at the request of a coach. If the school wants to get a certain amount of players at a certain position but knows some of them could be scared off by knowing other players at that position have committed, a school might ask another player at that spot to keep it quiet (though I really haven’t heard of this happening a whole lot).
And I don’t really believe that schools generally have all kinds of silent verbals — I think it’s usually just a term for a kid who isn’t 100 percent committed to a school yet. And these things could always be defined differently by different people. If a kid merely says he’s leaning toward school X, does that school put him in the silent verbal category? Some might, others probably wouldn’t.
Q: What does it take to get a first place award in the Football Writers of Association annual writing contest?
A: I wouldn’t know as I’ve never won one. I have come close a few times, however, and if you really care, you can find the past winners and other info on those awards here.
All for now.



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