Will Shamburger, spring ball and depth among the topics as we kick off this month’s questions and answers. …
Q: What’s the word on Will Shamburger? He was the off-season surprise. What’s happened and what’s expected with him?
A: Shamburger did have a nice spring a year ago and is still a player for which they have high hopes — remember, he’s just a redshirt sophomore who a year ago at this time was coming off a significant knee injury. Simply put, however, Shamburger got beat out by Nate Fellner at free safety as last season went on, so Fellner got all the time. Basically, that was it. Shamburger also suffered a concussion at mid-season that cost him some time, as well. UW has a lot of young safeties and the competition for playing time there will be pretty intense. But Shamburger is definitely still in that mix.
Q: What days during Spring Ball will the Huskies scrimmage 11-on-11 extensively, similar to games (i.e. move the chains, TD’s, No. 1’s vs. No.1’s, etc.).
A: We usually get that information once spring ball starts, though even then it’s always subject to change based on the team’s health, what they want to do, etc. But in general, they do those kinds of things on Saturdays. So if you are wanting to see some scrimmaging, I’d set aside the practices of April 16 and April 23 as well as the obvious of the Spring Game on April 30. But also, just keep following as spring ball begins and I’ll do what I can to let people know what days they’ll do more of that sort of stuff.
Q: We appear to be pretty deep with size and speed at all positions. Anywhere we are needing immediate depth?
A: That’s a pretty rosy assessment there that I’m not sure even the coaches would agree with. Certainly, the depth and overall talent appears to be getting better, and the coaches like the direction, I think. But remember that while there are high hopes for a lot of the recruits signed the last two years, until those guys prove it on the field you don’t really know for sure.
I’d say spots like the OL, LB and DL still have some serious questions as to how good the overall depth really is. Again, there are reasons to be optimistic about all those young OLs, but until you see them in action, you never really know for sure. Same with the LBs. And you can simply never have enough DLs. Prior to the four-game winning streak that ended the season, UW was one of the worst run defense teams in the nation. So I think bolstering the entire front seven remains an issue for this team.
And obviously, QB is also really unproven. Again, reasons for optimism. But again, just as many reasons for caution until you see those guys prove it on Saturdays against Pac-12 competition. And tight end, as has been often discussed, also remains a question until proven otherwise.
I think RB, WR and and the secondary are the best equipped right now, both with proven returning players and promising young players adding depth.
Q: Are there any more possible late acceptances? Any high school seniors whom they currently are still courting who are not yet committed?
A: None that I’ve heard of. And as I detailed last month, UW appears to have 86 scholarships promised at the moment for the 2011 season (the limit is 85), so there’s no real room for anyone. (Fixed from original entry).