The Washington Huskies made it through the first full-pads practice of the spring unscathed and left coach Steve Sarkisian feeling positive on Tuesday.
Sarkisian, who’s preparing for his second campaign as UW’s head coach, has been tickled by the performances of his quarterbacks just four practices into spring camp.
“I’m still really proud of the quarterbacks,” he said. “I think we’ve filmed one interception.”
Quarterback Jake Locker drew “oohs” and “ahhs” from the fans in attendance when he hooked up with receiver Devin Aguilar for a reception of about 40 yards. Locker was flushed out of the pocket by the defense and made the throw on the run to his left.
“He’s playing at a very high level,” Sarkisian said of Locker. “He used his legs really well today, threw the ball downfield more than we had the first three days.”
Senio Kelemete continued to shine at left tackle. The 6-foot-4, 281-pound junior started 11 games at right guard last season, but has been working with the first-string offense at left tackle.
“He just looks natural there, and that’s what we were hoping to see,” Sarkisian said of Kelemete’s switch to left tackle. “He looks impressive, like a big-time guy.”
Senior Cameron Elisara, who started eight games at defensive tackle, saw some time at defensive end.
“We slid him out to end a little bit and he was as effective as he’s been at three technique,” Sarkisian said. “He’s disruptive. He got in the backfield again and was really solid against the run.”
Freshman tailbacks Deontae Cooper and Jesse Callier left a positive initial impression on Sarkisian after the first day of full contact, although the coach admitted he wanted to review practice film to see how the two fared on pass protection.
There are no serious injuries to report, but some players were held out of practice and others were slowed.
Receiver Cody Bruns sat out because he suffered a concussion during Saturday’s practice, and defensive lineman De’Shon Matthews sat out with a sore Achilles’ tendon, Sarkisian said. Cornerback Desmond Trufant spent most of practice on the sidelines because of a groin injury he suffered more than a week ago.
Laroy Chase, a 2008 Lincoln High School graduate, was added to the roster on Tuesday. The 5-foot-11, 163-pounder was listed as a sophomore defensive back.
Two recent signees – offensive linemen Ben Riva of O’Dea and Erik Kohler of Oaks Christian (California) – attended practice. Both are high school seniors and will report to UW in the summer.
Sarkisian said the team will go through a full scrimmage on Saturday. The practice will begin at 1 p.m. and is open to the public. Washington’s spring game will be played on April 30.