Washington’s game with LSU will be televised live at 4 p.m. Saturday on ESPN. The broadcast team is Brad Nessler, Todd Blackledge and Holly Rowe. Blackledge talked to reporters today about the game.
Here’s some of what he said:
On the keys for UW: “My first reaction to what Washington has to do in this game is they are going to have to play as strong as possible up front defensively in their front seven against the run because LSU, that’s their bread and butter. They ran for over 300 yards (actually. 316) against North Texas. And certainly I don’t compare North Texas to Washington, but that is how they (the Tigers) play football. They’ve got a big, bruising offensive line. They’ve got a whole bunch of running backs that are physical and if you don’t slow them down running it either by penetration or just getting extra people in the backfield or whatever, you are going to have a really long, long game. So that’s my first reaction.
“Secondarily, Keith Price (pictured right in a Jordan Stead photo) is going to have to play really well. And he’s capable. He’s a really talented guy. I’m excited to watch him live. This will be my first chance to really see him in person. I’ve seen him on tape and I like the way he plays the position. So he’s going to have to be on his game and sharp and get rid of the ball quickly and decisively. But the main thing would be that defensive front seven and what they can do against the running game.”
On Keith Price’s game Saturday and Price saying it was one of the worst he has played: “I read those accounts and I read his comments about his play before I watched the film, and I thought he was outstanding in the first half. I thought he really looked good. At one point he completed 13 in a row. He was accurate, decisive. They had an opportunity to score late in the first half and make it 21-6 and really be in control of the game moreso than they were. But in the second half I thought San Diego State did a good job of getting people in his face and he had to get out of the pocket more. So I didn’t think it was a bad performance on his part. I thought he still played well.
“I jotted a couple of notes down, even when he wasn’t at his best in the second half he made two critical plays on third down on their last possession that were huge. One was a scramble on third-and-10 that he picked up the first down and kept the clock moving, and then he compeled a pass for seven yards on third and-three to keep the drive going. So I thought he played pretty well. I thought they got after him a little bit in the second half and chased him around but I still thought he played well.”
On the performance of LSU QB Zach Mettenberger in LSU’s opener: “Zach Mettenberger, he didn’t have to do a whole lot because of the running game, a lot of his passes were screens to wide receivers. I would bet close to half of his pass attempts were just get it and throw it out to a wide receiver quickly, He didn’t throw the ball down the field to a receiver too often. He made a couple of throws down the field. But for the most part he didn’t have to do very much and there weren’t a lot of critical situations he was in where he had to make big throws because their running game was so dominant his job was pretty easy the first time out.”