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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

October 10, 2011 at 5:31 PM

A few notes from practice and Sarkisian’s radio show

As is the typical Monday custom, the day ends here with UW’s practice followed by the Steve Sarkisian radio show. Here are a few notes from each:

Though first, just as I type this, news is breaking that Mike Stoops is out as head coach at Arizona. Here’s a story from the Tucson Citizen. A news conference is expected at 6 p.m. Arizona plays UW at Husky Stadium on Oct. 29.

Now for some notes from UW’s practice and Sarkisian’s radio show:

— The Huskies practiced for about 75 minutes or so, a workout that had a bit more work on the opponent than is usual for a Monday, with UW coming off a bye. Sarkisian said the team had a workout Sunday night as well so it was able to “steal a day” of extra work today devoted to Colorado in comparision to the usual Monday, when the team has usually had Sunday off.

— Sarkisian said that Keith Price looked “great” during the Monday practice and that “I thought today was the best he’s looked health-wise running around, probably in a month.”

Kasen Williams got some practice in but didn’t appear 100 percent as he recovers from what Sarkisian has termed a high ankle sprain.

— Similar to much of what he said earlier in the day, Sarkisian said the Huskies can’t afford to overlook Colorado and that “they are going to be a dangerous team coming in here Saturday.”

— There was a lot of talk of the passing of Al Davis, similar to that mentioned in the press conference earlier and detailed in the earlier blog, so I won’t repeat that here.

— Sarkisian said the weekend of recruiting for UW was “great.” “Our entire coaching staff was out and we didn’t double up anywhere, so we got into a lot of schools, saw a lot of games, got to see a lot of kids,” he said. “it kind of validated our thoughts on some kids but also opened up our eyes on some others, so it was a great week in that way.”

— Sarkisian agreed that the Huskies face something of “a new challenge” this week in being heavily favorite to win, but said he thinks the team is handling it well: “What I have appreciated about our team is how they have handled challenges, and this is a new one. … I thought so far, so good. I thought the guys were into it last night and good to be back, guys were energized and upbeat. But so far, so good and I think we have enough veteran leadership on this team now and guys who have been through the doldrums before that they don’t want to slip back.”

— Sarkisian repeated what he said earlier about Nick Montana being the MVP of the bye week which led to some discussion of Montana and how he is handling being a backup. Sarkisian said Montana has “nothing of a ‘what’s in it for me?”’ attitude and is instead “understanding of where we are going as a program and he is an integral part of growing. … He recognizes that Keith is playing at a high level. But somewhere in this season Nick Montana is going to come into a game and he is gong to play really well for us and we are goinig to need him to.”

— Sarkisian said further that Montana could “easily be disgruntled or upset” and that “I’m sure he wants to play” but that “he understands this is the ultimate team game and he is doing everything he can to help us win every Saturday afternoon.”

— He said he doesn’t think Montana’s last name and lineage is a burden in his career. He was also asked about the Utah game and Montana not playing in that game and saidd that “every game is different. I don’t know, hopefully we can be in that situatioin again and I have to make that decision. … Really, I want Nick to play — he deserves the opportunity to play. It’s just got to be the right time.”

— He said he’s confident Montana will play well when the time comes, noting that he tends to play better in practice as the intensity increases, from the beginning drills to ending with the team sessions. “I think he’s the type of kid that he will rise to that challenge,” Sarkisian said.

— Asked about the return to health of players such as John Timu and Nate Fellner, he said there will be good competition at those spots and will also allow the Huskies to do “a lot of platooning, a lot of substituting” which will keep the team fresh as it plays seven games in seven weeks.

— He said Chris Polk had a good practice and looks “poised for a big second half.”

— He said that while Colorado receiver Paul Richardson is listed as likely out this week with a sprained knee that he is not counting him out and wouldn’t be surprised to see him play.

— Sarkisian said that he thinks the defense is continuing to improve, citing a regular Monday blitz drill in which he said he noticed “just the tenacity with which we are rushing the passer.” He also said that “we are doing the things that it takes to be a good defense in our system, stopping the run, and getting after the quarterback and creating turnovers, and we are doing those three things now better than we were earlier in the season.”

— And in giving a final word on Colorado, he said “scary, scary. This is not a 1-5 football team. This will be a physical football game.”



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