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Notes and observations from tonight’s final practice before the spring game. The Huskies were in shells tonight inside Dempsey Indoor for more than two hours.
- Three-way threat Shaq Thompson was in a yellow (no contact) jersey for the first time tonight, after being limited on Tuesday. He did take part in many of the position drills — even returning one kickoff as the “off” returner — but didn’t participate in the final 11-on-11 team period. The nature of his (minor) injury is unclear, and we’ll see what he’s able to do for Saturday’s spring game.
- DE Josh Shirley was also held out for the first time this spring. His injury is unclear, too.
- WR Kasen Williams again ran some routes, gingerly, as he continues to rehab his broken leg.
- In the final 11-on-11, QB Jeff Lindquist ran with the first-string offensive line, leading a nice drive into the red zone. He had one run for about 15 yards. Lavon Coleman had two big runs, too, including one for about 30 yards.
- QB Troy Williams then ran with the second-string line in the final period, with a couple quick completions to WR John Ross.
- Ross again got some work in with the defensive backs. He’s another three-way threat, lining up alongside Thompson as the main kick returner during an extended kickoff period.
- There was a high-engery period featuring a one-on-one with an offensive lineman vs. defensive lineman. Each D-lineman took two snaps to try get past the O-linemen and to the quarterback. NT Danny Shelton zoomed (if any 330-pound man can zoom, it’s Danny Shelton) past poor redshirt freshman C Dane Crane on the first play — that was No. 55 vs. No. 55, if you’re scoring at home — but Crane responded on the next play and held Shelton in check. Shelton wanted another crack, but didn’t get it. DE Joe Mathis and LT Coleman Shelton continued their extended battle this spring; I’d call that one a draw tonight. RT Andrew Kirkland was also crowned the winner of his battle royale with DE Marcus Farria (with strength coach Tim Socha, acting as the WWE referee, holding Kirkland’s hand up in victory.)
- The Socha Drill today featured soccer penalty kicks, with a full-sized soccer net brought onto the field. Let’s just say, these dudes should stick with this football. We didn’t have a great angle, but I did see that WR Jaydon Mickens made one PK and the offense ended up winning. Yay.
- Offensive coordinator Jonathan Smith was back after returning to Boise for the birth of his third child earlier this week.
- Defensive end signee Jaylen Johnson (Corona, Calif.) was on hand, as was Newport tight end Drew Sample.
- Lawyer Milloy and Damon and Brock Huard were in attendance, too. Sadly, Damon’s once-mighty fastball has continued to decline.
- Next: Spring game at 1 p.m. Saturday at Husky Stadium (and live on Pac-12 Networks). Fan festivities begin at 10 a.m.
- Also, here’s my feature on Deontae Cooper, who’s healthy and motivated as he runs toward his goal of becoming UW’s featured back.