The follow-up on quarterback Jake Locker's broken thumb confirmed the originial prognosis that he will be unavailable until mid-November, coach Tyrone Willingham said today. However, there will be another evaluation in a couple of weeks. Depending on how the injury and the season progresses, Willingham said Locker is "in danger of not being available" again this year.
In other notes from his final press conference before the Oregon State game on Saturday, Willingham said:
*True freshman Cody Bruns will be in the receiver rotation this week.
*No decision on a starting tailback has yet been made between Willie Griffin, Brandon Johnson or Terrance Dailey.
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*Either Victor Ayiewa or Tripper Johnson will start at the safety opposite Nate Williams.
*Safety Johri Fogerson and defensive tackle Senio Kelemete have been among several players fighting illness this week.
In other news, the UW defense has fallen to 119th – last nationally – in pass-efficiency defense, 118th in total defense, 116th in scoring defense, and 114th in rushing defense.
Defensive coordinator Ed Donatell indicated this week that it is very unlikely that late-arriving true freshman defensive lineman Craig Noble will play this season. Donatell also singled out true freshman defensive end Everrette Thomson for praise. "He'll be a very good end here for a long time and have a real nice career," Donatell said.
This is UW's homecoming game. Willingham acknowledged that has lessened in meaning to some fans, but that it remains "something that is important" to him and the players.
The UW Alumni Association will hold its annual Homecoming Rally at 8 p.m. Friday at Red Square on campus. The event is intended for current students and alumni and will feature free food, live performances by the Husky marching band and cheer squad, and appearances by UW athletes and coaches.