Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Pac Ten Alley

Washington came out of the Syracuse game in pretty good shape last week injury wise. One exception was at FB where Luke Kravitz picked up a hand injury which will keep him out of the lineup for a week, or two. Frosh MLB Austin Sylvester who played on special teams last week is going to move over to FB for a week, or two till Kravitz gets back. Kravitz broke a bone in his left hand while making a block Friday against Syracuse.

Byron Davenport is back, and will play against Boise State on Saturday. Vonzell McDowell will continue to start based on his strong debut against the Orange, but you are going to see plenty of Davenport as he works himself back into game shape. Davenport's return is an added plus to a depth challenged, but talented unit. Tough to tell Vonzell was a frosh last week since he played better than most UW CB's have played over the last 5-6 years in his debut. Guard Matt Sedillo and WR Cody Ellis should also be back this week from injuries.

The Pepsi Players of the Week were RB Louis Rankin (offense), DE Daniel Te'o-Nesheim (defense) and punter/kicker Jared Ballman (special teams). The scout team Players of the Week were TE Romeo Savant (offense and special teams) and DE De'Shon Matthews (defense). On kickoffs Ballman averaged 64.6 yards on seven kicks. He also averaged 41.2 net yards on four punts. Great start for the junior from San Diego.

Lappano said the tight ends weren't intended to be a major part of the game plan against Syracuse and that the team then kept a lot of things under wraps once the game began to get out of hand. He indicated to expect more use of the TEs and both the receivers in the offense this week.

Nathan Ware who runs the PI Dawg Blawg has unveiled a new feature that will appear every Monday called the Monday Morning Longsnapper. Make sure you visit Jason during the week. He is a great writer, fine analyst, and writes a great blog.

The title is a tribute to my favorite football writer – Peter King of SI – who writes his famous Monday Morning Quarterback column. Of course, I'm still Peter-King-in-diapers and - since he took the quarterback position - I'll stick with longsnapper which is probably about where I belong.

This week we get his take on the Appalachian State upset, and his recap of the Pac Ten. He also has his first Pac Ten power rating of the season. He has the Huskies 7th, but I would probably go with 5th even though we have to play someone better than Syracuse to deserve that lofty middle of the road status.

I hate it. I hate that power teams like Michigan even play schools like AppState. It cheapens college football. They don't deserve to be on the same field as the storied Wolverines and – let's face it – they got lucky. I hate that Michigan even put themselves in this position.

Tickets are still available for the clash with Boise State. If you are in the Seattle area try to buy them up so those obnoxious blue, and orange people don't get any. Once again, a big key to victory this weekend will be crowd noise. Husky Stadium can get up to 135 decibels, and that just happens to be past the threshold of pain. Just ask former Miami QB Ken Dorsey if the noise makes any difference?

Art Thiel of the PI is one of the greatest sports writers in the history of the Pacific Northwest. He churned out his classic this morning concerning the Husky Crew.

The night after quarterback Jake Locker ascended into Valhalla via Syracuse, N.Y., the Huskies men's crew figuratively set the Moscow River ablaze and, in the shadow of the Kremlin, was hailed by thousands of Russians as sporting conquerors.

Congratulations to Coach Ernst and the Husky Crew, you make us all proud to be Huskies.

Special Mention

I would like to shout out to Prrbrr, and Hair of the Dawg for all of their support since I started the blog over a year ago. Like anything new it started kind of slowly, and there were some weeks when it was only the three of us. I always felt that if I was consistent, and if the Huskies started improving, the blog would catch on with a bigger audience. So thanks to everyone who checks in each week, and a special thanks to all of you who take the time to post! If you have any suggestions on how to make the blog better, just let me know.

Pac Ten Alley

Lets take a walk down the coast to see what the neighbors, and our out of conference opponents are up to.

A picture can tell a thousand words, and the Orange 44 Blog resorts to photos of frustration after last weeks romp by UW over Syracuse. We are going to be leaving Syracuse in our rear view mirror for the rest of the season because there is just too much suffering going on over there.

Jake Locker is not Superman. Neither is Louis Rankin. But the Orange defense made them look superhuman Friday night.

Boise State beat writers comment on the new veil of secrecy at Boise State and the reasons why.

To be honest, this is the first time I’d heard about such a policy, and I do not know Petersen’s reasons behind the move. Closing practices has hurt us local media slightly, but the team and the head coach are still readily available to us. Would I be disappointed not to talk to any Washington players? Sure…but I’m sure Petersen has plenty of reasons, and I’ll see tomorrow, possibly, why.

Ohio State got a lot of positive contributions from it's freshman class in the opener.

The freshman members of the Ohio State football team had a simple goal heading into the season opener."We just wanted to go out there and play, and try to contribute to the team," running back Brandon Saine said. Too bad they couldn't count their contributions as tax write-offs; consider these: Saine and receivers Dane Sanzenbacher and Taurian Washington totaled 18 points on touchdowns in the 38-6 win over Youngstown State. Cameron Heyward stepped in for defensive end Lawrence Wilson when Wilson went down with a broken right leg that will keep him out at least six to eight weeks.

Nestor from the UCLA blog isn't that fearful of BYU which is next up for UCLA....Nestor you should be afraid, very afraid since this is the type of game Dorrell comes up short in.

Yeap. No reason a UCLA football team should ever be cowering about the prospect of playing a team from MWC. No matter how many conference championships they win, BYU will always be looking for respect out of MWC. While UCLA should always respect all of their opponents, a team with our tradition should be blowing these kinds of teams out at the Rose Bowl on a regular basis. They have some decent players on defense, they are replacing many starters in their offense. If Dorrell truly has assembled a Pac-10 championship level program in his 5th season in Westwood, Bruins should have no problem handling these guys.

The injury bug has been biting early at USC

The Trojans have an extra week to prepare for their Sept. 15 game at No. 20 Nebraska, and they might need every day between now and then to get healthy. In the week leading up to Saturday night's opener against Idaho, the Trojans lost their starting tailback, a starting receiver, a starting cornerback and their starting center.

Big Jon over at the ASU blog borrowed a little bit from of us last week, and we like that. Dennis Erickson by the way has whipped this team into shape!

Tomey scares the shit out of me. He’ll come to town with a hard-hitting defense, a bevy of trick plays, and confidence in the knowledge that he has owned ASU for the better part of his career. The Spartans are going to be pumped for this one and will want to make a statement against a BCS conference team.

Enjoy the win Michael Wines, but you, and me both know there is trouble in Duckville!

Dennis Dixon (pictured) ran for 141 yards, including an 80-yard scoring dash, to lead Oregon to a 48-27 victory over Houston on Saturday. Dixon also completed nine of 15 passes for 134 yards and two touchdowns for the Ducks (1-0) in a wild game that included three touchdowns in less than a minute.

When Arizona changed it's offensive philosophy this Spring I knew they were going to start the year like a vintage model T that had been in the garage twenty years. How many more weeks till basketball season?

It is really easy for some to throw University of Arizona offensive coordinator Sonny Dykes under the bus, but after the first game he deserves a better ride than that, doesn’t he?
The Wildcats' new coordinator is obviously taking his hits from many fans on the radio, on Internet message boards and in letters to the Tucson Citizen.

Jon Wilner asks this question...Can Jim Harbaugh coach? I think the answer is yes even though his undermanned squad eventually ran out of steam against UCLA.

To me, the most intriguing question facing Stanford this season is not whether T.C. Ostrander is ready to run the team, or whether the offensive line will cease being offensive, or whether the running game will rise from the dead, or whether the defense will hold opponents under 40.
It’s whether Jim Harbaugh and his staff can coach at this level.

I thought OSU was incredibly one dimensional even though their running game, and defense looked pretty good. One impressive thing I saw from the OSU offensive line was the number of decleats I saw on almost every play. Ute DL's were flying up in the air on every play...that was OSU QB Sean Canfield was a completely different story, can you say Achilles heal?

Sean Canfield, Oregon State's starter, went 8-for-19 with 86 yards. Those numbers don't sound like anything special, but if you add in the balls that were dropped by the receivers, those numbers sound a lot better. For Sean's first game in a starting role, these numbers are tolerable. Head Coach Mike Riley would have liked for Sean to have made a few decisions differently, especially the interception he threw to Sean Smith on a deep ball in the third.

The tree sitters are still there in Berkeley, time for a little tear gas. Where is Mike Lude when you need him?

Every college football fan argues about their school having the best, most unique game-day experience. However, Cal may just take the top prize. They already had Tightwad Hill. Now there's Tree City. The more-than 72,000 fans attending the Tennessee-California season-opening football game was greeted by a typical Berkeley event about a dozen residents of the city literally camped in the trees by the stadium. Protesters set up makeshift tree houses and hammocks in the branches to protest the University's plan to remove a 200-year old oak grove in order to renovate the stadium. "They've been there for months," said one unamused Cal official.

WSU goes down to it's first defeat of many this year in the opener to Wisconsin. I have a long does it take for Brinkhater to rename himself Brinklover? Brink may be the only thing to love about this team.

Well, with the exception of a few minor details related to process, the outcome of today’s contest went pretty much as expected. With two exceptions:

1) The Offense was MUCH better than expected.

2) The Defense was MUCH worse than expected.Given that 1 & 2 basically cancel each other out, you have the predicted outcome: we KINDA stayed close, but then got BLOWN out in the 4th quarter.

Hawaii opened up the season against Northern Colorado who is a new member of Division I-AA, what the heck, was Portland State busy?

Still, Brennan said, "I threw some bad balls. The football wasn't coming out clean. I probably did a good job of getting to the right reads. But for some reason, they didn't come out clean. I don't know why."Quarterback coach Dan Morrison said: "Even he knows he could do better. He made some good throws, but he wasn't razor sharp.

Colt Brennan, who went 34 of 40 for 416 yards with 6 touchdowns in the first half, by the way, hate to see him when he is razor sharp.


hairofthedawg said...

Romeo Savant's name kind of surprised me as the scout tem POW this week...a pleasant surprise. I remember his numbers being pretty good, but it's nice to see what's apparently a lot of effort and desire as well.

Davenport could be huge this weekend, I know, stating the obvious.

My new boss/colleague is a Big-10 fan and was screaming at the replay what, four days later. I told him we were going to have some interesting bowl season.

Kudos to the crew! Outstanding job guys!

Cheers John.

I have to agree with you about Oregon, although it looks like they picked it up in the second half. I was watching via Yahoo during the first half and it didn't look good. Our matchup with them is getting more interesting by the week.

Health Insurance Expert said...

I believe Savant is from around your old stomping grounds. The kid is quite a specimen from what I have heard and has the possibility of earning a scholarship one of these days.

Davenports return is timely, as was the coaches decision to rest him last week.

I don't think the Duks have it this year, Houston is as bad a team as Syracuse for comparitive purposes.

hairofthedawg said...

Same division, but different league when I was around. With the recent reclassification I'm not sure what league they're in now. Or the name, either Wakhiukum or Cathlamet...

I thought Syracuse was going to be tougher and was mildly questioning the coaches decision on Davenport last week, but it works now.

Health Insurance Expert said...

Hair it is so hard to figure wout what is going on the first couple weeks of the college season, and that is another reason I love college football. The thing is you just never know from season to season. It will be interesting to see how Syracuse does the rest of the way, but they won't do much unless they can run the ball.

hairofthedawg said...

Yeah, look at Michigan and the polls, another reason pre-season rankings should be done away with except in magazines.

How would you do it? Aside from the lack of advertising sold, I'd wait until the halfway point(conference) to publish rankings that actually count toward something. The rest is all fluff anyway, at least to me. It's nice to see the name in lights, but I've seen how quickly the lights fade as well.

If they still had the Weyerhauser roads open, I could get to Savant's home pretty quick from my grandparents farm, but having to drive around through Longview and highway 4 or PeEll and highway 6, then 101 makes it a pain. There's some decent fishing on the Elochoman Creek/River(not sure which but it has a hatchery), but not worth the trip.

As always, we'll know more on Sunday...

Health Insurance Expert said...

I think after four games you have a pretty good idea of who is good or not. What that eliminates is seeding which IMHO would be fair.

For Michigan to be even rated at this point after losing to A-State is a joke.

Lundy77 said...
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