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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

November 2, 2010 at 7:09 PM

Tuesday practice notes — A new QB for the Huskies?

As the Huskies ran through their practice Saturday there was a new QB taking snaps with the scout team offense — head coach Steve Sarkisian.
We don’t get access to Sarkisian after the Tuesday practice, but on his blog he explained the reason as saying that the loss to injury of Jake Locker and the promotion of Keith Price and Nick Montana leaves the team a little thin with scout team quarterbacks. Montana usually has a heavy role with the scout team but wore his own number on Tuesday working as the backup to Price.
Sarkisian, a record-setting QB at BYU in 1995 and 1996, also may have wanted to make sure that the UW defense gets as good a look as it can at the Oregon offense, as preparing for the pace of what the Ducks do is among the biggest challenges of this week for the Huskies.
It was a rapid-fire practice for the Huskies as they attempted to replicate that quick style, and they were off the field at 5:43 p.m, 20 minutes or so earlier than normal.
UW defensive tackle Alameda Ta’amu noted that the defense got through its “service” period — when the defense works against the scout offense running the plays of the opponent — about twice as fast as normal, leaving the defense time to stand and wait for the offense to finish on the other end.
“It’s a big challenge for our defense,” Ta’amu said.
Ta’amu laughed and said he was tempted to take a shot at Sarkisian “but I didn’t want to do more sprints after practice.” We don’t get access to Sarkisian after Tuesday practices so we didn’t get a chance to ask him about his brief return to playing duty. Also helping run the scout team this week has been Luther Leonard, a backup WR for the Huskies initially recruited as a quarterback.
UW defensive coordinator Nick Holt echoed the sentiments of every other coach who has faced Oregon of late in saying that trying to simulate the speed of Oregon’s offense in practice is tough to do.
“They are quicker than most, especially early in the game they get going,” Holt said. “And as the game goes through they slow it down and start calling a lot of plays at the line of scrimmage. But their tempo is pretty fast.”
Obviously, the Huskies have struggled as late against every style of offense, be it the spread of Arizona two weeks ago or the power of Stanford last week, part of the reason UW enters the game as much as a 36-point underdog.
Holt said that a film review of the Stanford game revealed pretty much what he thought after the game, and noted that the Cardinal also hurt the Huskies with some of its own no-huddle looks, something to learn from in preparing for Oregon.
“There were a couple of times they went no huddle and we didn’t get lined up really fast and got misaligned and got some runs broken on us and we weren’t lined up correctly because we didn’t kick the front (meaning switch sides) and they had an extra offensive linemen in,” he said. “Things we had worked on we just didn’t execute very well when it came down to it.”
There were no new injuries apparent and no real personnel shifts, though it looks as if Greg Christine is continuing to get a look at right guard along with Colin Porter, listed as the starter.

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