Now is when the bye week really begins for the Huskies, having wrapped up their last practice of the week.
It was a strange sight at the Dempsey Indoor today as Steve Sarkisian ran the practice without any of his full-time assistants, all of whom were already on the road recruiting (graduate assistants and others were on hand to help out with some tasks). Sarkisian will now hit the road himself, with coaches recruiting through Saturday night before reconvening on Sunday to begin gameweek preparation for Colorado, which comes to UW on Oct. 15.
Sarkisian said he had never before run a practice by himself, saying with a smile that he missed his assistants. “I had to work too hard today,” he said.
Today’s practice, about a 90-minute affair in the Dempsey Indoor, consisted of some fundamental work and then concluded with about a 30-minute scrimmage featuring the younger players. There were no starters participating, though some of the younger backups got some work, such as running back Bishop Sankey, who after a fumble early on turned in one of the highlights of the day with about a 50-yard run.
The score officially ended 14-0 with both of the touchdowns scored by the No. 2 offense, which was run by Nick Montana. Willis Wilson scored the first touchdown and Sankey was credited with the other on the long run (though he appeared to be pushed out of bounds around the 5-yard-line or so — hey, it’s the bye week).
Montana had a couple of about 10 yards to DiAndre Campbell and ran once for a first down to key one of the scoring drives. A pass interference penalty on a fade to Campbell and a couple of Sankey runs helped key the other.
Dezden Petty also had about a 30-yard run to get the No. 3 offense (led by Derrick Brown) deep on the final possession of the day. But that drive came up just short when a holding penalty negated an apparent touchdown and Brown couldn’t find anyone open on fourth down.
Defensive highlights included a fumble recovery (of Sankey’s fumble), a pass breakup and a big hit on a short pass over the middle from Travis Feeney, who has been one of the stars of the defensive scout team all year; an interception of a Thomas Vincent pass by Nick Holt (back at linebacker fulltime); a sack of Brown by Matthew Lyons on a blitz.
Said Sarkisian of the scrimmage: “It was good for our guys that haven’t been playing here week in and week out and have been practicing real hard to play football: live football. To tackle, to run, to cut, to catch, to get tackled. It was good for those guys.”
Asked if anyone stood out, he said: “It’s hard to identify specific players when you’re trying to manage the whole thing. Obviously, Bishop has an early fumble there but then bounced back with a nice long run. I’m assuming some of the O- and D-linemen did some good things. I’m going to have to look at the film.”
Of Feeney’s day, he said: “He’s been doing that though, we’ve seen that since training camp, a nice prospect, definitely.”
You can see Sarkisian talk about that, and more, in the video below, with some more notes at the bottom:
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IN OTHER NEWS. …
— Kasen Williams was in a boot during practice — he wouldn’t have participated in the scrimmage part, anyway — but Sarkisian said it was no big deal. “Just sore, we are taking care of it,” he said. Williams sprained his ankle against Utah and Sarkisian said on Monday that X-rays were negative. Williams did some running around on Monday when the team was not in pads.
— Sarkisian also said Johri Fogerson had his knee surgery last Friday and it “went well.” He said Hau’oli Jamora will have his surgery this Friday.
— Safety James Sample saw a lot of action in the scrimmage. Said Sarkisian: “(He’s) getting healthy, which is good.”
— Sarkisian on the play this week of Nick Montana: “He had a nice week. I thought he played with confidence. A real sense of urgency, which is important to have. The urgency’s there playing the position. Sometimes when you’re a backup you have the tendency to go through the motions, and I didn’t think Nick did that at allthis week. I thought he had a real nice sense of urgency, played with a purpose and had a nice we
— Keith Price was in uniform and watched the scrimmage with a play sheet in hand, giving teammates advice here and there. “I was just coaching,” he said. “I guess I was Coach Price today. It was pretty fun. I enjoyed myself.” He also said taking it easy this week — he did a little bit of throwing but no team work — was good. “Oh yeah, definitely, I think it’s going to pay off. I’m still a little sore but I’ll be ready to go next week.” Asked what’s still sore, he said: “Probably my ankle right now. My knees are good right now. My knees feel better than since we started.” He said he was excited to have a Saturday off to watch college football all day and was also looking forward to taking in all the Oregon-Cal game tomorrow.
— Other older players also helped out during the scrimmage and Sarkisian said: “What I appreciated was the spirit of the vets, the one’s who weren’t playing. They were into it. They were coaching. They wanted the guys in their position groups to do well, and that’s the sign of a close team.”
— He also explained his reasoning for having all the other assistants hit the road while he handled practice: “I didn’t know if I could handle it myself. But we wanted to maximize our days. We only got one bye this year, and when you’ve only got one bye I felt like it was imperative to get out Wednesday – to make sure we were in high schools Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and if there are games on Saturday, (at) games on Saturday. That was the reason for it: just to maximize our time this week on the road.”