One thing that may escaped notice is the condition in which Chris Polk arrived to camp this year. Chris is now close to 215 chiseled pounds and is spending most of his time at TB during practice. The thing about Chris that you are all going to find out about is his work ethic. The kid graduated early from high school so he could enroll early and get a spring practice under his belt and start conditioning for the upcoming season.
Chris and his parents have a game plan. That game plan landed him at Washington rather than USC because he wanted to play right away, not sit on the bench waiting his turn behind eight HS All Americans. It isn't like Washington is without talent, in fact Coach Willingham has put together a nice stable of skill position athletes. That being said the Huskies didn't have anyone on the roster with the total package of tools this kid possesses.
Chris learned an important lesson this past spring, he won't be the fastest player in the league anymore, let alone his own team, he can't simply run away from people and continue to achieve his goals. Polk hit the weight room hard once he arrived on campus, and that extra 15 pounds of muscle is going to make a difference between the tackles in 2008.
Most fans feel that So Brandon Johnson will be the man at TB this year based on his performance as a back up last season. Johnson had some off season knee surgery to clean up some damage from HS, and many question if he put in the adequate time working out, and rehabilitating to make a quantum leap of improvement in 2008.
Chris Polk on the other hand is taking nothing for granted, and the player who most scouts thought was the best HS RB in the West last season is poised to make a serious move this season.
They call him the next Reggie Bush, but he works harder than Reggie, has a solid family behind him, and comes without any of the baggage. Chris is willing to work harder than anyone and do things the right way. I like to think of him more as the next Napoleon Kaufman because of the solid personal traits he has shown since he hit campus.
Pac Ten teams beware, Chris Polk is going to be the Huskies X-Factor in 2008.