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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

September 14, 2011 at 3:53 PM

Wednesday practice report — Fellner doubtful, Stevenson uncertain

The Huskies are off the field following a Wednesday practice, a workout that ended with UW suddenly seeming a little thin at safety.

Coach Steve Sarkisian said after the workout that starting free safety Nate Fellner is doubtful with a hamstring injury that was re-aggravated last week against Hawaii. Fellner did not participate in drills Wednesday.

“I’d say doubtful for Saturday,” Sarkisian said of Fellner, who started every game last year and the first two of this season. “We will see what he looks like tomorrow. We’re trying to really rest it first before trying to push him again. So I’d say doubtful. But you never know. I’ve seen better comebacks than that.”

Sophomore Taz Stevenson, who has been working his way back into the depth chart after missing a lot of camp with a sprained knee, appeared to ‘tweak” the knee again during Wednesday’s practice when he was rolled up on during a team session.

Sarkisian said “we’ll see have to see how he comes out of it but he was pretty sore” afterward, though it was unclear the severity of the injury or if it would hold Stevenson out of the Nebraska game.

With Fellner out, Justin Glenn likely starts at safety alongside Sean Parker. Others who can back up there are Will Shamburger, James Sample and Greg Walker.

“It’s probably one of our deepest positions on our team so I think we are okay,” Sarkisian said.

Sarkisian also said that DT Semisi Tokolahi is “getting more reps” and could see some time in Saturday’s game.

That was about it for the personnel news.

Sarkisian also talked a little bit about the common challenge he shares with Nebraska coach Bo Pelini of trying to rebuild storied programs that had fallen down a little, and said coaches are always aware of the history of their respective programs.

“You have to be,” he said. “I have been since day one when I took the job. I’d be foolish not to be, so I am very aware of it, very aware of the rich history and tradition and the great players and coaches that have been part of this program. And they built this place and we are just trying to clean it up and get it back to where it needs to be.”

He was also asked about Nebraska’s press defense on the corners, something that was an issue for UW in each game last year, and said: “It can be really disruptive if you can’t get off press. It can also be beneficial to an offense if you can get off press and create big plays, so that’s going to be a big challenge for Saturday.”

Asked the keys to working against press coverage he said: “It’s scheme, first of all. It’s technique second — you’ve got to use proper technique. And third is mentally, you’ve got to believe, you’ve got to know you are going to beat the guy. So when you can bring all three of those things together you’ve got a great chance.”

He added that he thinks the Huskies are “much improved from where we were last year to where we are now” in beating press coverage. “It’s been a big point of emphasis for us this off-season and all the way into training camp and again into this week. We are fortunate we’ve got good press corners that can help our receivers get prepared for it.”

He was also asked about the offensive line to date and said: “We’re getting better. You think about we’ve got three second-year guys starting and we’re getting more experience, more snaps, more games under their belt and they are improving.” He said the Nebraska game will be a “big challenge” for the young linemen “but I will suspect we will respond. We’ll see.”

Here’s video of Sarkisian’s session with the media today:

[do action=”brightcove-video” videoid=”1160062602001″][/do]

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