It is now less than two weeks until the Washington Huskies open the 2013 season against San Diego State.
And if it were even a day sooner, head coach Steve Sarkisian and his staff might be in scramble mode to get things exactly how they want them.
As Saturday’s scrimmage of around 100 plays showed, the offense can be explosive and the defense has improved. But penalties, missed assignments and even just getting lined up properly marred the tempo and overall productivity.
“I thought we were a little sloppy,” Sarkisian said. “(We’ve) got to get to where our consistency is right, our sense of urgency is right, and minimize some of the mistakes that can hurt us.”
They were the type of mistakes evident to the average football fan and downright glaring to Sarkisian.
“Some of the fidgeting at the line of scrimmage, getting lined up, a few of the holds that occurred, that’s playing football. (We’ve) just got to get used to playing football the right way,” he said.
For the first few weeks of camp, Sarkisian and his staff have been hands-on with both sides of the ball, making sure the alignments and substitutions are perfect. But they can’t do that in a game.
“It’s letting them be on the field and having to rely on one another, and talk to one another and fix some of the issues on the field that they need to get fixed without us,” he said. “We need to get it done between now and the mock game on Friday when we go over to CenturyLink, my goal is for that thing to be really crisp, for us to be humming.”
The first-team offense looked sluggish in its first three series. Quarterback Keith Price shouldered the blame.
“That’s on me,” he said. “I needed to ‘get my juice going,’ as Coach Sark would say.”
But Price was quick to point out that the penalties, personnel and alignment mistakes killed tempo.
“Coach Sark wants us flying,” Price said. “And the only way you can fly is if you know what you are doing.”
The quarterbacks vying for the backup spot saw two series each. Both Derrick Brown and Cyler Miles had a few nice completions. Miles completed 4-of-6 passes for 58 yards, while Brown was 4-of-9 for 64 yards. … Placekicker Travis Coons has a fatigued kicking leg and did not suit up. Gig Harbor’s Korey Durkee, the starting punter, and walk-on Santiago Lopez handled the duties. Durkee made his only field goal attempt from 26 yards, while Lopez missed from 32 and 50 yards. … Wide receiver Jaydon Mickens handled the first-team punt returns, and he joined Shaq Thompson on the first-team kick returns. … The first-team defense played in the nickel personnel package 95 percent of the time. Thompson was the extra defensive back and played inside close to the line of scrimmage, like an extra linebacker. … Standout tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins played the first play of the scrimmage and then watched the rest of the practice. Sarkisian said Seferian-Jenkins is battling general soreness from the grind of practice. … In the battle for starting tailback, Bishop Sankey had the better day, rushing for 58 yards on seven carries. Jesse Callier had four carries for 24 yards. … Sarkisian said defensive end Hau’oli Jamora and running back Deontae Cooper have yet to have their pending knee firstname.lastname@example.org 253-597-8483 blog.thenewstribune.com/uwsports @RyanDivish