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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

April 10, 2012 at 3:05 PM

Hartvigson proving a bigger catch in UW offense this spring

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On his offseason: “Just been working with Ivan a lot. Coach Torres has been really helping out with the tight ends. All of the coaches are great teachers. Working hard, getting stronger and getting ready for the season.”

The official statistics show that Michael Hartvigson made eight catches in 2011.

Roughly 60,000 UW fans at Husky Stadium for last year’s game against Arizona, however, would argue that it should be nine.

What looked to just about everyone like a catch — and still looks like it in the picture at right taken by Dean Rutz — was instead ruled a drop, denying Hartvigson of what would have been one of his biggest plays of the season (he finished with 30 receiving yards last season and one touchdown, against Oregon)..

Recalling that play when talking to reporters this week, Hartvigson said: “I was a little upset, but it’s just how the game goes. I watched it (on video) a couple of times, but I’m just keeping my head up and moving on to the next play. I’ll get my plays.”

Indeed, that’s the hope now, that Hartvigson takes a big leap in production as a sophomore in 2012.

Of course, Hartvigson has lots of competition with Austin Seferian-Jenkins remaining as the first option at tight end.

But UW coach Steve Sarkisian has made it clear he thinks there’s plenty of room for two tight ends in his offense (sophomore Evan Hudson is also in the mix as the other tight end participating this spring).

In a press conference kicking off spring ball, Sarkisian said Hartvigson had an “awesome off-season” and that “we’ve got a pretty good two-headed monster at that position that we’re excited about offensively that could change up philosophically some of what we become and where we go.” Monday, he again lauded the play of Hartvigson, citing him as one of the players who has made the biggest impression this spring.

“I know he’s not getting all the ‘praise’ catches, but he’s doing a lot of little things, which has been good,” Sarkisian said.

Being healthy has helped.

Hartvigson played in the first four games of the 2010 season as a true freshman before having season-ending shoulder surgery, that then impacted his ability to work out heading into 2011.

But he stayed healthy through the 2011 season (when he was a redshirt freshman) and into the off-season, which he said has allowed him to come into spring ball in the best shape of his career.

“I’m about the same (weight)– 255, 250 — but I feel like I’m faster and quicker and stronger,” he said.

“Coming up to spring ball (in 2011) I was limited, I got my shoulder surgery in October, so I wasn’t ready to go until February so I only got a couple weeks in the weight room. My first real offseason was in the summertime. It’s been different this year from the bowl game all the way to spring ball just to stay healthy.”

Which he says is beginning to pay off on the field.

“Ever since high school I’ve always had alright hands,” he said. “I’m just getting my chances now and making the most of them.”

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