UW coach Steve Sarkisian was a guest on KJR-AM 950 this morning with host Dave “Softy” Mahler.
You can listen to it here, and I also have a few transcribed highlights below:
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No real news revelations, mostly bigger picture stuff about the direction of the program, the Husky Stadium renovation, etc.
As mentioned, here are some highlights. …
— Sarkisian said they have “kicked around” the idea of moving some of training camp off-campus, which would make it easier for fans to attend. But that right now the plan is to do it all on-campus, which would apparently mean it would again be closed to the public. He said having lots of people there is “not safe and wouldn’t give us enough room.”
— Asked if he is satisfied where the program is right now compared to where he thought it might be when he took over, he said “I think I am pleased with our progress, the way we are building the program and the steps that we have taken, whether it’s on the field, in recruiting, in the classroom and the way we represent ourselves in the community … we’ve taken the proper steps to continue to build the program the right way. We want to be a program of substance and be here for a long time as we build this and not one great year and then we go back (build it) so that we are contending year-in and y ear-out.” He said he thinks “we are right on the cusp of that, quite honestly.”
— He said one reason he thinks they are on the cusp of it is that he thinks “we should have been and could have been a 9-4 football team” last season. Mahler asked if he was referring to the Oregon State and Baylor games as ones that got away and he said yes that “those two jump out at you that we had opportunities to win.” He said was disappointed that those were two of the type of close games UW had won in 2010 but couldn’t finish those last year.”
— He said one reason he thinks UW is getting closer to where it needs to be is that it now has increased depth up and down the roster. He noted the role injuries have played in contributing to some losses the last few years, specifically Hau’oli Jamora getting hurt last season and Jake Locker and Keith Price each having to miss a start in each of the last two years. He said “I think our roster now is at a point to where we have the depth in place where if one guy goes down, the next guy who does in, there isn’t that disparity there” between the two players.”
— Mahler asked about the tough early schedule and the fact that in some ways it’s kidn of just the reverse of 2011 when the better teams were on the back end of the schedule. Sarkisian said he thinks that could be an advantage since “you’d like to think you should be more healthy early in the season, you should be fresh” and noted that some of UW’s bigger wins the last few years have come earlier in the season. He also noted UW is a quarter school so it won’t begin classes until the week of the Stanford game (Sept. 27) allowing the players that much more time to concentrate on football.
— Asked about the progress of the stadium renovation and what it will mean for the Huskies, he said it will be “a huge benefit, quite honestly. The stadium is going to be spectacular … the gameday experience for the fan will be phenomenal. … When a recruit shows up he is going to be wowed by it, without a doubt …”
— Finally, he was asked his thoughts on a college football playoff. He said “I think we are headed in the right direction as far as going to a playoff.” He said instead of just four teams “I would like to think that maybe eight would be a better number, maybe 16 for that matter. I do truly believe that playoffs are needed in college football …”