Happy Friday, everyone.
The Huskies were on the practice field until almost 10 o’clock Thursday night. It was a spirited practice in helmets and shoulder pads, and the defense won the day with four or five turnovers (one late fumble seemed to come after the whistle and, you know, there aren’t official stats).
I asked Danny Shelton after practice if there was an example of something that has come together for the team under the new coaching staff. I was thinking more along the lines of schemes or player development, but Shelton’s answer surprised me.
“Something that I noticed is the unity,” the senior nose guard said. “Guys are really making it important, trying to learn each others’ personal lives. You saw what Coach had us do over there. It’s funny, but it’s serious. That’s going to really help us get to where we want to be — that championship.”
As I mentioned last night in the practice notes, the post-practice team huddle at midfield took longer than usual. For much of that gathering, the entire team was seated while offensive lineman James Atoe and defensive end Josh Shirley stood up and spoke. Chris Petersen stood in front of the group, sort of acting as the emcee. Many laughs. It’s all part of a new buddy system, if you will, that pairs up teammates who might not otherwise know much about each other.
“It’s just random guys you sit next to, and Coach expects us to learn their life story, something new that people don’t really know,” Shelton said. “I’m sitting next to (running back) Lavon Coleman and (walk-on linebacker) Devon Phillips, so I still gotta learn about them. Hopefully Coach calls me tomorrow; I’m going to try figure that out tonight.”
Pretty great, right?
The Huskies return to the practice field at 10:30 a.m. Saturday.
- Live chat with Keith Price at 1 p.m. today.
- Mel Kiper has Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Bishop Sankey both going in the second round of the NFL Draft (insider access).
- More practice notes from Christian Caple.
- Steve Sarkisian shook things up at USC practice.
- Texas paid a whopping $267,000 to a search firm to find new coach Charlie Strong.
- Larry Stone on the hottest team in college baseball — your Huskies, who host Oregon with first place on the line this weekend.