Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Huskies Healing up for Opener

Lets spend a little time talking today about what is going on in preparation for the Oregon game. Willingham told the media today not much is going on yet. Nice try Ty, but I think the Huskies are squarely focused on Oregon. Intensive game planning will start on Monday, but you can be sure that the team is already planning some surprises for Belotti and company.

The good news is that Washington is slowly getting all the injured players back to full strength. Locker came back on Monday along with Brandon Johnson so the coaches are really going to be focusing on keeping them healthy. Johnson has two weeks to shake off the rust and get ready.

Getting the safeties healthy is another big concern. Jason Wells is still coming back from his knee injury, Victor Aiyewa is still slowed by his groin, and Nate Williams came up with a gimpy ankle. If the Huskies were playing tonight the starters at safety would be Harris and Johnson. Thankfully we have almost two weeks to go so I imagine if there are no setbacks we should be fine on opening night.

Juan Garcia has really put himself in contention to play in the opener. I would have to say this has been the surprise of camp so far. Matt Sedillo has been slowed down with a concussion so it is going to be great to get some depth back at the position. Mykena Ikehara is a kid that could play this year if needed. Remember his name because this kid will be the next great Husky center. Hopefully they won't need him and he can build some muscle this season and keep that extra year of eligibility. (Quick note on this one is that the PI's Molly Yanity says Garcia may have suffered a setback. We will report about it later today if true after Ty concludes the press conference.)

An official depth chart probably won't be released until next week, but here are some pretty solid guesses on what it will look like. Not a lot of surprises here except for Harris over at safety. He is the only safety that isn't dinged up so I think he will get the nod over Aiyewa early. Wells is going to play a lot this year, and once the coaches are satisfied his knee is fine I bet he ends up starting beside Williams. As far as depth goes i would love to see them move Fogerson and Taylor over. I think it is just a matter of time with Taylor, but fogerson has impressed at RB.

Offense

QB Locker, Fouch
TB C.Polk, B. Johnson, Griffin, Freeman
FB Homer, Kravitz, Sylvester
WR Logan, Aguilar, Young
WR Goodwin, Kearse, Hawkins, Boyles
SB Bruns, J. Polk
TE Gottleib, Winter, Middleton, Izbicki
OT Habben, Fancher
OT Ossai, Armelin
OG Tolar, White Frisbee
OG Bulyca, Rosborough, Shugert
C Sedillo, Garcia, Christine

Defense

DT Elisara, Kirton, Kelemente
DT Matthews, Ta'amu, Wood
DE Teo Nesheim, Duncan, Thompson
DE Jones, Aldrich
WLB Gage, Houston
SLB Foster, Stevens
MLB Butler, Tuiasosopo
CB Forrester, Mosley, Persley
CB Richardson, Davenport, McDowell
SS Harris, Aiyewa
FS Williams, Wells, Johnson

Specialties

KR C. Polk, J. Polk
PR Goodwin, J. Polk
PK Folk, Perkins
P Ballman
S Morovick

Husky Fans Form Factions

This is an interesting outsiders take on the message boards over at Dawgman.

Last year, with Jim-Mora-to-the-Huskies talk at frenzied pitch, I actually saw a guy at Husky Stadium with a Jim Mora Jr. button.

Fitting, I thought, because the battle between the pro- and anti-Willingham forces was beginning to resemble a political debate–with both sides having developed specious talking points (pro-Ty: It’s Gilby’s recruiting!; con: Look at Notre Dame!), and disingenuous counter-arguments meant to stifle debate (pro-Ty: you’re scaring off recruits!; con: don’t blame the players!).

But now the campaign is at a new level. The sides have actually created political parties. Over at the Dawgman.com message boards–which I like to check in on every once in a while to destroy my faith in humanity–the pro-Willingham forces are being called POSIDawgs, and anti-Willingham partisans are known as NEGADawgs.

7 comments:

Rob M said...

In one of Molly Yanity's "Bytes" the other day she talked with Casey Bulyca. He mentioned the possibility of JWF petitioning for a 6th year of eligibility, a la Juan Garcia. Since both Bulyca and Morgan Rosborough are SRs, that would almost certainly make JWF an every down starter. Might we see Jordan next year?

John_S said...

I am soo pumped for the game. I have a feeling that the Huskies are going to start off slow and gain steam throughout the game.

The environment is going to be new for the freshman and sophs and I think they will have a hard time of it at first then adjust.

I think the return game is going to be huge in this game. I'm excited to see what the Polk's bring to the table in that aspect.

What is your thought on how well Donatell is going to be able to gameplan against the spread option? The NFL does not employ the spread option so its going to be new for him.

John Berkowitz said...

Morgan still has another year to go eligibility wise.

An extra year for JWF is a possibility if he decides to petition for it. He definitely fits the criteria.

John Berkowitz said...

John S - I think Donatell will do a great job, but it will be up to the personel to execute his game plan.

The key is going to be getting enough penetration from the line to disrupt things in the Oregon backfield.

This game will be won in the trenches as most games are. The Ducks have a pretty stout OL so it will be a big test for a young Husky DL.

jk said...

Nice work on the projected depth chart. The only thing I noticed was that you may have flipped the outside linebacker spots, at least according to what Molly has been reporting.

Would anyone who knows defense better than me care to elaborate on the differences in the positions?

My understanding is that since the weak-side guy is away from the tight end side, they have more of a free-range, chase-and-tackle role, whereas the strong-side guy is maybe a little closer to the line of scrimmage and/or covering the tight end in pass coverage...?

John Berkowitz said...

JK - The chart is correct, and you have the responsibilities down pat.

Expect the defensive alignment to look much different than when Baer was in charge.

I think we will all have fun watching the new stuff unveiled against Oregon.

The coaches should have their own depth chart to release by the end of the week.

Go Dawgs! said...

On the LB's, typically the SAM backer is bigger and he and the MIK would take on lead blocks and such and allow the WIL backer to fly around and clean up.

Go Dawgs!