The first day of Huskies spring football practice is in the books, which means it's time to pass along some notes and observations from the two-hour session at Husky Stadium.
--- There were several players who were present but not participating, presumably for injury reasons. They were: WR John Ross III, DB Kevin King, LB Keishawn Bierria, OL Coleman Shelton (he had his left arm in a sling), DB Jermaine Kelly and DB Trevor Walker (Kelly suffered a season-ending ankle injury in September, and Walker tore his ACL in October). Three players -- DB Brandon Beaver, DB Brandon Lewis and LB Travis Feeney -- wore yellow, no-contact jerseys.
There were also two absences -- RB Deontae Cooper and DB Naijiel Hale. Cooper will "be out there" eventually, coach Chris Petersen said, and Hale will miss the first week for an unspecified reason.
--- A bird pooped on my laptop pretty early on, but I used a printed roster to wipe it clean.
Never miss a local story.
--- When the team broke into its first 11-on-11 period, the first-team offensive line featured, from left to right: Jake Eldrenkamp, Dexter Charles, Siosifa Tufunga, Shane Brostek and Andrew Kirkland. I didn't see Charles during any of the 11-on-11 sessions later in practice, though.
The second-team offensive line started out with Matt James, Dane Crane, Michael Kneip, Jesse Sosebee and Kaleb McGary, who is back at o-line after beginning on defense last year. Devin Burleson, Cory Fuavai, John Turner, Brostek and Kirkland comprised the third group, though there was obviously some shuffling here and there as the practice progressed.
--- The defense forced three turnovers -- two interceptions, both of freshman quarterback Jake Browning (more on that in a bit), and a fumble recovery by Vita Vea of a failed quarterback-tailback handoff exchange between Jeff Lindquist and Lavon Coleman -- which meant the offense had to run gassers at the end of practice.
--- As for the quarterbacks, they were given pretty equal reps with different personnel groupings, and each showed some promise. Lindquist seemed to have the most consistent day, completing a handful of passes that looked more like fastballs. He slings it. The best of those throws was a long completion to Jaydon Mickens over the middle. Mickens beat Budda Baker on the play, though Baker caught him and would have been in position to make a tackle had it been full contact with pads.
Lindquist also completed passes to Joshua Perkins and Darrell Daniels during his final 11-on-11 reps, but his series was cut short by the fumble. He had another nice touchdown pass to Mickens earlier.
--- Browning had an up-and-down day. He threw two interceptions -- one to Baker, and one to redshirt freshman linebacker Jake Wambaugh -- but also threaded a nice, 25-or-so-yard touchdown pass to Brayden Lenius over the middle. Browning's final 11-on-11 session was rough, as he threw an incompletion, then was sacked on a nice rush by Will Dissly, then threw the interception to Wambaugh. But overall, he looked relatively comfortable for a kid who should still be attending high-school classes and planning for the prom. Mickens spoke highly of him afterward.
--- K.J. Carta-Samuels also completed some nice throws, including a couple to WR Neel Salukhe during the final 11-on-11 period.
--- It was a big day for the tight ends, particularly David Ajamu and Drew Sample. Ajamu had a few nice catches down the seam, including a tough grab from Carta-Samuels that also drew a penalty for defensive pass interference. And Sample, who redshirted last year, caught at least six passes during 11-on-11 and 7-on-7 periods. Perkins, Darrell Daniels and James Boker, a walk-on, also caught passes.
--- Lots of rotating on the defensive line, as Dissly, Vea, Greg Gaines, Shane Bowman and JoJo Mathis, among several others, all got plenty of work. Vea looks like a different person. He's listed at 329 pounds, down 17 from his listed weight of 346 last year, and appears to be in much better shape.
--- The Tim Socha strength-and-conditioning competition period involved a relay race between offensive and defensive players pulling a tackling dummy 30 yards as fast as they could. The offense won.
Christian Caple can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @ChristianCaple