The Washington Huskies are looking for big plays this season, and they got a few today as they practiced for about two hours at Husky Stadium.
No. 1 quarterback Jake Locker set the tone on his first play, sizzling a pass to senior receiver Corey Williams on a crossing pattern for 35 yards.
Later, Locker found Rankin free down the sidelines for a 28-yard touchdown.
Soon thereafter, Rankin unleashed the play of the day, breaking a draw into the secondary and sprinting for a 55-yard score.
The final big-gainer came as No. 2 quarterback Carl Bonnell connected with walk-on receiver Charles Hawkins for 36 yards.
All of that left coach Tyrone Willingham torn with the typical intrasquad questions: Was it good offense or bad defense?
He decided it was a little of both.
Other memorable moments:
&bullThe scrimmage began with a two-minute situation. From that work, it appeared that the Huskies' No. 1 nickel defense is composed of linemen Greyson Gunheim, Caesar Rayford and Daniel Te'o-Nesheim, linebackers Donald Butler, Chris Stevens, Kyle Trew, and a secondary of Jordan Muchison, Mesphin Forrester, Darin Harris, Jason Wells and Roy Lewis.
&bullTrew was filling in for weakside linebacker E.J. Savannah, who sat out with a stinger. The injury is considered unrelated to a similar injury suffered earlier in his career, however Willingham said the team wanted to treat it cautiously.
&bullNo. 1 center Juan Garcia participated without restriction after recovering from a shoulder injury that has cost him about a week of hitting.
&bullJared Ballman missed a 42-yard field goal attempt wide right, and he was inconsistent while punting. Willingham says he expects Ballman to handle only the punting in the fall and that he is not yet concerned about the inconsistency.
&bullLocker again suffered with accuracy problems, which he attributes to footwork problems. He added that his footwork is improving, but work remains.
&bullPerhaps the hardest hit of the practice was dealt by an offensive player, as fullback Paul Homer ran over safety Jason Wells, knocking him flat.
The Huskies will take Sunday off before returning Monday for their final week of spring work. Spring practices will conclude with the annual Purple and Gold game at 12:45 p.m. Saturday. That game is free and open to the public as part of Washington's annual Spring Fling weekend.