Now that the roster for the 2012 Huskies is basically set, it’s time to take a look at each position, starting with the quarterbacks.
First, here’s a look at the players on the roster (years are 2012 eligibility and heights and weights are those provided by the school):
Keith Price, 6-1, 195, Jr
Derrick Brown, 6-3, 236, RFr.
Jeff Lindquist, 6-3, 234, Fr.
Cyler Miles, 6-4, 218, Fr.
WALK-ONS (those listed on the roster at the end of the 2011 season)
Will Smith, 6-2, 180, RFr.
Thomas Vincent, 6-0, 203, RFr.
Erik Wilson, 6-0, 184, Jr.
UW is undoubtedly set at the top with Price (picture right in a Dean Rutz photo) returning for his second year as a starter, coming off a season in which he set a bevy of school records, notably touchdown passes (33) and rating (161.9).
The key for Price will be to get a little bigger and stronger in the off-season to withstand the rigors of the season — he said recently he was down to 185 at the end of 2011 and would like to be at 205 for the beginning of 2012.
The nation saw what a completely health Price can do in the Alamo Bowl, and while expecting those exact numbers every game isn’t realistic, he’s set a high standard for himself going forward. He’s also on the nation’s collective radar, and a fast start to the 2012 season could have him in line for all manner of awards.
After Price, though, it gets a little dicey. There’s lots of highly-touted talent on hand. But it’s all unproven at this level, with no on else on the roster under Price having played a down. With Lindquist and Miles enrolling in the fall, Brown will likely be the backup in the spring, though Vincent also figures to get his turns with the No. 2 offense.
Brown had some good moments early in fall camp in 2011, showing solid mobility for a player of his stature and a strong arm. But he then spent the rest of the fall working primarily with the scout team and the spring will serve as a more accurate barometer of his progress and readiness to play.
Vincent has impressed with his athleticism, working on some backup special teams throughout last season (though he redshirted the season and has yet to play) and it seems likely he will forge a role for himself in some way with the team going forward.
Lindquist and Miles will join the competition in the fall and will be given a chance to win the backup job. UW will likely try to redshirt at least one of the quarterbacks, and possibly both depending on how the backup competition unfolds. But at least one of them will almost certainly travel as the emergency quarterback (and maybe both).
And just given the odds at the position, at some point someone other than Price will likely have to play, though Washington’s overall history at keeping QBs healthy through the years has been pretty good — from 1999-2003 UW’s starters missed just one start due to injury. But since then, the Huskies have had some issues. Only twice since 2004 has UW not had to start its backup at least once due to injury — 2005 (Isaiah Stanback made all 11 starts) and 2009 (Jake Locker made all 12 starts).