Huskies Insider Blog

Sarkisian's homecoming to USC as satisfying as it comes

Sarkisian audio (10-05)

Erickson audio (10-05)

As previously noted, UW coach Steve Sarkisian called his return trip to Southern California one of the truly special experiences of his life.

More than 60 of his family members and closest friends arrived to witness the Huskies' 32-31 victory over the Trojans, who were ranked No. 18.

Sarkisian reiterated that point on the Pacific-10 Conference coaches teleconference with reporters:

"It's a great venue to play in – a unique experience one playing against Kiff (USC coach Lane Kiffin), and two, (seeing) so many familiar faces – again not only of players, but staff members at USC that are still there."

He might not be 'Googl-ing' jokes for his placekicker in pressure-packed situations, but Google has a nice 'Maps' option in case you get lost in Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

"I think the only thing that might have been a little bit weird was at the Friday walkthrough, the first time going into that visitor's locker room and not going into the home locker room," Sarkisian said. "That was about it."

Other comments:

How important has the emergence of walk-on Kiel Rasp been in a conference of good punters?"He's obviously done a great job. Anytime you have a new punter, your biggest concern initially is that he goes out there and catches the ball, oddly enough. He's done a nice job for us. Fortunately in the last ballgame, we didn't have to punt all that much, but he's done a nice job – not only punting the ball it well, but we're a big directional punt team, and he's put the ball where it needs to go."

Could Johri Fogerson be redshirted if his upper leg injury does not improve?"There potentially is that thought, but we've got such a long ways to go, right now we're working to try and get him back out there. That remains to be seen."

How satisfied were you for Jake Locker in the win over USC?"Well, I think for me, that was obviously a big win for us – for a lot of reason. There wasn't a guy I was happier for than Jake Locker. Obviously he took the brunt of a lot of the heat after that Nebraska game, and had to endure it for two weeks. It speaks volumes to his character, to his mental tough and to the size of his heart, and he went out and played a really special ballgame that after the game when I addressed the team, it was something I wanted to make sure I pointed out because that guy is a tremendous leader, and he brings so much to the table. To watch him fight through that, to show his ability to continue to battle, his ability to continue to work at this is pretty special. I was very proud of him."

Linebacker Mason Foster is the leading tackler in the Pac-10. How valuable has he been?"He's very versed at doing things - he can play (linebacker) off the ball, he can play (linebacker) on the ball, he can rush the passer. He's got an unbelievable knack for the football, for forcing fumbles, for recovering fumbles, creating turnovers. He's a really special players. Geez, I don't know where we'd be on defense without him."

What has been the approach of moving on past the USC win?"We're not necessarily trying to put the win behind us. We're trying to learn from the win and one, why we did win, two where we can continue to improve. By no means did we play a perfect football game, so i think it's important not to put the win behind us and understand that when we play with great effort, when we play with passion and when we execute, we can play pretty good football."

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