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The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

September 4, 2014 at 12:27 PM

Video: UW’s Chris Petersen on Cyler Miles, the run game and Eastern Washington

UW coach Chris Petersen had his final media availability of the week after Thursday’s practice:

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(The receivers talked yesterday about being energized with Cyler Miles at quarterback this week. You feel the same?) “I always wait to see when we play. It’s always going to come down to execution. I think Cyler’s done a good job this week preparing. I think he’s very much into football and spending a lot of time — not just this week. So it’s good for him to get a chance to see what he can do.”

(How has he responded this week to the extra reps?) “He’s really been the same throughout. He really has. From the summer when he came back to fall camp, he’s been very steady, very even keel. It’s been good to see.”

(Have you noticed a change from the team in general since last Saturday?) “Like I said, practice is one thing. I think they’re focused in. We’ve still got a long way to go in terms of cleaning up a lot of details and learning the system that we’re trying to get in. There’s still a lot of work to be had.”

(You said all offseason and into fall camp that you felt “behind” as the new staff in the Pac-12. Does it feel like you’re closing the gap a little bit now?) “I feel it more now than ever before because when you get into the season and you’re trying to game plan, it makes things a little harder. Because it’s like, ‘Hey, we know all this stuff.’ (But) it doesn’t matter what we know. They (the players0 have to know it flat-out as well as we do, and that’s going to take awhile. They just don’t have the backlog of, ‘Remember when we ran this back when?’ And so it’s going to take some time.”

(Did you expect to run the ball better than you did against Hawaii?) “Yeah. I always expect to run the ball better. … You’ve always got to run the ball to play good offensive football. I’ve said before, Hawaii does a nice job; they’ve got some stout guys. But do I think we can play better and run the ball better? We have to and we need to.”

(Are you able to build some momentum off that last drive?) “I felt a different intensity. (But) it can’t come in the last series. If we can show up in that last series and maintain it, then I think we can get something done. But easier said than done.”

(Did Lavon Coleman earn some more carries the way he ran the ball last week?) “Yeah, I think so. I think so. I thought he did a good job. He really hasn’t missed a beat since spring ball and I’m anxious to see what he can and see if he can be even more productive.”

(You’ve talked about the “hurdles” you put in place for Cyler Miles in the offseason. What were those and how did he handle them?) “Well, I think we keep the hurdles internal. But everything we asked him to do, he did. And time will tell. But he’s done everything we’ve wanted him to do and he’s been a very good teammate. I do believe he’s learned, I think he’s remorseful, I think he’s humbled by it, all those type of things.”

(Have you gotten a better sense of what he can do this week?) “Hard for me to say without being in a game. I do feel a strong competitive nature from him. I think he like to play. I think he likes to compete. I get a good feel there. But it’s all fun and games at the driving range, as we say.”

(Is there a chance Troy Williams gets to play this week?) “There’s always that possibility, no question. For anybody on our roster, you have to prepare like that. And certainly at that position.”

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(What does your ideal nonconference schedule look like?) “Not really. Scott (Woodward) and I have had some discussions. It’s such a tricky thing anyway. It’s like, who’s available, who will give us home and home, that a lot of that narrows down. I think you can put together an ideal schedule on paper and it usually doesn’t turn out like that. It was really, really hard for us at Boise to get some things done. And I think it’s only going to get tougher. We’ll kind of take that … I think it’s scheduled out for the next few years, and I think we’ll see how this whole thing plays out in terms of the national playoff system, just so much speculation. I think the next few years, things will start to settle down and you can kind of see what everybody really needs to do.”

(What about this year? Is it ideal?) “I don’t really know. I just think so much about like, our team, and whoever we play, we play. It doesn’t matter if it’s Hawaii, Illinois, Eastern Washington – we’ve just got to take care of ourselves, and a lot of that has to do with Scott and our administration, who we can get, what makes sense, what our fans want to see. That, coupled with I do think we play in an unbelievable league, that every week is going to be a battle. So I do think we’ve got to keep that mind as well.”

(On emotions of coaching first game in Husky Stadium) “I’m excited to be here. I really am. I’m excited to play a home game. I’ve always had so much respect and admiration for the energy in this stadium, so I’m excited to see that. And then hopefully that fuels our team to play inspired football.”

(On Vernon Adams) “I think he’s really, really good. He is a really, really good palyer. Quarterback. He’s deadly accurate, gets the ball out quick. When guys are covered, he’s very athletic and mobile, but he’s not looking to just run – although he does that very well. He keeps his eyes downfield. He’s still trying to find his guys that are open. He does that. He just really plays the game well. I have a tremendous amount of respect for the guy.”

(Does a college team need a dual-threat QB?) “I think that always brings another element to the table that is hard to defend. There’s nothing more frustrating as a defensive coach when you’ve got everybody covered, you’ve done the right thing, and there goes the quarterback running, and that’s really, really hard. Do I think there’s a lot of good quarterbacks that aren’t super mobile that can really lead an offense? Yeah, I do. But that’s a … we like our quarterback to be able to do that when things are covered, get some yards with your legs.”

(Kellen Moore seemed to do OK without running) “I think he had a negative rushing total when he left, so there’s different ways you can skin the cat.”

(Is biggest improvement truly from week one to week two?) “I think there should be a lot of improvement, but I will say this – it’s a much different style of team that we’re going against. Their offense is all about throwing it and spreading you out. Hawaii was pretty much about pounding it. And then on defense, I think their style is much different as well. But just in general, I think we should see some things that look different. But it’ll be a unique challenge because they are so different than what we played last week.”

(What does Eastern’s defense look like?) “Hawaii, very much blitz-oriented. And not that everybody doesn’t have their blitz packages, but that’s what they were going to do a heavy dose of, and kind of unique blitz patterns. So this team (EWU) hasn’t shown that they are as blitz-heavy as the other guys had. Now that I say that, we’ll definitely get that. So we’ll be ready.”

(First tweet last night?) “Oh yeah. Big, what was it, four letters? Starting slow. I’ll build up to it.”

(Plan to tweet more?) “We’ll see where it goes. Like I said, really the main reason I got the account is to communicate with our recruits and those things, and we’ll see how it goes. Maybe communicate a little bit to Husky Nation as well.”

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