The Huskies are off the field following their Thanksgiving morning practice. It was closed to the media and I wasn’t there anyway, spending part of the morning futiely trying to recapture my youth in our annual Turkey Bowl football game.
But I got a few notes passed along from those who were there in the interview room.
The most significant personnel news may be that UW coach Steve Sarkisian said true freshman safety/cornerback James Sample had shoulder surgery Wednesday morning and is out for the year. Sample has, according to the team’s stats, played in three games, most recently against Colorado. Sarkisian said the team will petition to get a redshirt year for Sample.
Sarkisian also said Justin Glenn (concussion last week) is good to go but that Will Shamburger (stinger last week) will be a gametime decision. So that likely leaves the free safety spot Saturday left to Glenn and Nate Fellner, who stepped in and played the second half at Oregon State.
Here are a few other comments from Sarkisian:
— On practice this week: “I thought today was a very spirited morning practice. It is always kind of fun practicing Thanksgiving morning – there is something to do that, even going back to when you were a kid and playing in the park or at the high school and all that. I thought our guys were spirited again; they’re into it. But again, that is part of the preparation process. There is a lot that goes into this, and a lot between now and kickoff time of things we still have to work through as far being sound and understanding all of our assignments. This isn’t going to be about want-to – we are going to want to play really well and we’ll play hard Saturday – but it is about execution.”
— On playing well in the last two Apple Cups: “We’ve embraced the rivalry – one. But we don’t make it out to be bigger than it needs to be. We obviously respect Washington State, and the Apple Cup and all that goes into it. It is a great event for our fans, and for alumni and for our kids and we embrace it. But at the end of the day, you still have to block, tackle, run, throw, catch and that is what we emphasize.”
— Comparing Nick Wood to Colin Tanigawa at left guard: “They are very similar, quite honestly. Nick is a little more of an athletic offensive lineman. They are both feisty. They are both tough. Effort is one of their keys to their games, so very similar that way.”
— On Kasen Williams saying he wants to make his mark on the rivalry: “I’d like them all to make their mark in the rivalry game, quite honestly. It would be a nice day. There is something to be said about that – about not trying too hard. And that is kind of the stuff we try and talk about here for the next 48 hours, and we still have plenty of time to the buyildup to the ballgame.”
— On playing at CenturyLink Field: “Hopefully our fans are louder, first of all, and that we get a home field that way. Outside of that, it is going to be our first time playing there. … And the end of it, I think as the more we go there into next season, our comfort level will increase. But until then, we’ve got to play the game and not worry about where the game is being played.”
— On when bowl practices would start: “Obviously depends on what game we go to to maximize our time and get in all or our practices. I do know we won’t start until next Saturday.”
— On the most concerning matchup about WSU: “It is pretty obvious – those two wideouts are good players with (Marquess) Wilson and (Jared) Karstetter – so it is our ability to contain those guys. We are not going to just eliminate them, they are too good and they throw to them too often just to eliminate them. But we do need to contain them.”
— Also, here’s a link to the latest K-Kast from Mason and Steve Kelley in which they discuss Washington’s recruiting efforts in the state this year.