Junior linebacker Shaq Thompson remains in the running to play on offense for the Huskies.
“We’ve had some success with putting him in there,” UW running backs coach Keith Bhonapha said. “He’s always definitely in the game plan I think. He’s one of those guys that has been able to become productive in our room on the offensive side of the ball. And like any team around the country, we’re always trying to get out best players on the field as much as you can.”
Thompson had three carries each against Eastern Washington and Illinois, gaining 82 yards on those six carries, including a 57-yard touchdown against EWU.
The loss of senior Jesse Callier (torn Achilles) in the Huskies’ Core Four running back attack will likely lead to more carries for Lavon Coleman, Dwayne Washington and Deontae Cooper, beginning Saturday against No. 16 Stanford (1:15 p.m., FOX).
“It’s always hard when you lose a veteran,” Bhonapha said of Callier’s season-ending injury. “Losing your senior year on one dramatic play, running down the field on a kickoff, that’s no fun for him. I definitely wish him the best. I know he’ll be around a little bit just trying to figure out, ‘OK, what’s the next step for me?’”
“I told these guys in the springtime, ‘This is a long football season and the running back position is a very physical position.’ Things happen. So all these guys have to be ready to go. Between Lavon, Dwayne and Coop, those guys have not flinched one bit. They’re ready to go and dialed in and focused for Saturday.”
The Huskies introduced a new wrinkle against Georgia State, with backup quarterback Jeff Lindquist coming off the bench in the second half to rush for two touchdowns on his three touches.
Bhonapha said UW’s ballcarries will need to break arm tackles against Stanford’s top-ranked defense on Saturday.
“This week, it’s all about yards after contact,” he said. “That’s just going into the game, (having a) downfield, full-speed mentality on the attack.”