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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

November 13, 2010 at 9:06 PM

Locker practices, still not cleared to play

While eight teams in the Pac-10 played today, the Huskies were practicing, going through a normal “Monday” workout two days early in preparation for Thursday night’s game against UCLA.
And the big news is that quarterback Jake Locker was in uniform and practicing.
Locker did all of the drills except for the final 11-on-11 team period, the session when a player is most apt to get hit. But when the No. 1 offense worked against the scout team defense, Locker went first and took 14 of the 21 snaps, with Keith Price getting the rest.
UW coach Steve Sarkisian, though, said it was still too early to say whether Locker will play against UCLA and said he has not yet been medically cleared.
“I thought he moved around okay,” Sarkisian said. “We will just have to take it day-by-day to assess how he responds from one day to the next. I’m not going to make any grand statements as far as ‘is he playing, is he not.’ We just need to assess it here for a couple days.”
Still, the simple fact that Locker was on the field at all is a big step toward him playing against the Bruins as Sarkisian had said Locker would need to practice to be able to play.
“I thought it was encouraging to have him out and I thought he did some nice things, but I just want to assess him day by day,” Sarkisian said.
As for Locker not working during the team period, Sarkisian said: “I just try to avoid some unnecessary contact there because again I just don’t know exactly how he is doing to feel tomorrow.”
Sarkisian said that it could be a “gametime” decision whether Locker plays, and that it was possible Locker wouldn’t be medically cleared until right before kickoff, if he is cleared.
But Sarkisian said of Locker’s rib that “it is definitely healing. It is not 100 percent yet so that’s why we are going to take it day by day to see where he is at.” And he added that the doctors “are very encouraged where he is at.”
And he acknowledged that it might be hard to keep Locker off the field for what would be the last home game of his career.
“I think so,” Sarkisian said. “Any time it’s Senior Night, those things have a tendency to get emotional and either way — whether he is playing or he is not — it’s going to be an emotional night.”
IN OTHER NEWS. …
— Defensive end Talia Crichton, out since the Oregon State game with a knee injury, did not practice and will not play against UCLA, Sarkisian said. “It’s just not coming back the way we were hoping,” Sarkisian said. “. … We are not going to rush him. We want to make sure he is healthy before he gets back out.”
— Also still not cleared to play is reserve safety Justin Glenn, who suffered a concussion against Oregon.
— The rest of the lineups appeared unchanged and among those participating fully were guys like Chris Polk and Mason Foster, who rested some last week. Cort Dennison, who missed a few days last week due to a death in the family, was also back.
— WR Devin Aguilar has been back for a few weeks now but was noticeable tonight for the way he moved around. “I thought he looked good tonight, as good as he has looked in a month,” Sarkisian said. “He showed some real explosiveness.” But Sarkisian said it was too soon to know if he will return to punt return duty. “We’ll assess that here. We haven’t quite made that decision yet.”
— Sarkisian said that the recovery for RB Deontae Cooper and P Will Mahan, who each suffered ACL injuries (Cooper in August, Mahan early Septemer), are each “on schedule. Those guys, they always appear on schedule to this point, until we really get them moving. But so far, so good with them both.” Asked whether they will be back for the spring, he said: “I don’t know all that right now. Give you a better answer at the end of the year.”

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