A few notes from coach Steve Sarkisian’s Monday press conference.
— Sark on injuries: “Hopeful we get some of these guys back that haven’t played for us.”
— Reportedly Pac-12 Larry Scott is contemplating mandating a policy for reporting injury. Sark’s reaction: “First thing came to mind, I’m all for it. If we standardized the mechanism for updating the injury report, that puts everyone on the same level. …. It would be the best thing.”
— Sark on if the Pac-12’s policy could mirror the NFL policy: “Everybody will try to find a loophole, but at least it forces your hand to do something. it puts everybody under the same rules and regulations rather it be nothing, which is where we are today. … I’d be in favor of something that puts an umbrella on something that says these are the guidelines.”
— He was proud of the fast start and encouraged by the special teams, particularly the fake punt, which he said was “executed perfectly.” He also said the Huskies had two kickoff returns that were close to breaking for big gains. He was upset with the the punting game and punt coverage.
— Kicker Travis Coons will get a chance to compete with Korey Durkey “because we can’t live with 30-yard punts.”
— Sark said he challenged the team at halftime to be aggressive in the third quarter.
— Sark didn’t like the eight penalties and called them unacceptable. He said: “that’s not going to work.” However, he was encouraged the Huskies only received two penalties in the second half. He said delay of game penalties and two false starts at home shouldn’t happened. He didn’t like the taunting penalty or Justin Glenn’s hit out of bounds on a receiver.
— Sark wants to use the bye week to work on creating a pass rush.
— The Huskies have been shuttling players in and out of the kickoff returns and Sark believes UW “can be an elite return team in our conference.”
— Washington will practice Tuesday-Thursday and will take Friday off and return Saturday to prepare for next Thursday’s game against Stanford.
— Sark called freshman Shaq Thompson “a really mature guy.” He said Thompson’s blocked field goal against Portland State “is just a glimpse of what we’ll see out of this guy.”
— Sark said UW’s nickel package gives the Huskies more speed, but said Thompson needs to improve rushing the passer on blitzes.
— Sark on the non-conference games and the upcoming games: “The way our schedule is set up … we’re heading into the second quarter. Long TV timeout here and we’re going into conference play. … Excited to play a nationally televised game on Thursday night. … Until then, the focus will remain on ourselves and us.”
— On the importance of finding a third receiver. “We were all hopeful James Johnson could be that guy, didn’t turn out that great.” Kevin Smith was a candidate as is DiAndre Campbell, Jaydon Mickens, Kendyl Taylor and Cody Bruns. Sark wasn’t sure if anyone in the group will definitively take the No. 3 spot and expects they’ll get it done by committee.