Editor's note: For those of you who did not know, yours truly has been sidelined for the past 51/2 weeks after suffering a significant hand injury in a lawn mower accident. Not back fully, but did attend the annual spring game today.
Greetings! Got a glimpse of the team for the first time this spring at the well-attended Spring Game today (estimated 10,000 spectators).
Fresh eyes on the product - that is what can be provided in this blog entry:
* This is Keith Price's offense to run: Was told UW coach Steve Sarkisian inferred after practice Thursday he would name the starter today at quarterback (which would be very un-Sark like, who aims to keeo information close to the vest).
Well after the game, he didn't. But did he really need to say it?
Price started with the No. 1 offense (Dawgs). He threw three touchdown passes. He ran for another score. He easily made the best throw late in the first half when he split two defenders with a hard, spiraling pass to tight end Michael Hartvigson, which was eventually fumbled.
He looks more poised than Nick Montana, his chief competition for the job. He was relaxed. The veterans respond to him.
Afterward, Sarkisian was asked if Price, who will be a redshirt sophomore, was the leader in the clubhouse for the starting nod. The coach acknowledged as much.
* Tight end - a weakness turned into a strength: A few short months ago, the tight end in the UW offense was non-existent.
On Saturday, Price's very first pass was an out-route attempt to Gig Harbor High product Austin Seferian-Jenkins along the right sideline.
The tight end will be back in 2011, folks - and likely in a big way.
It won't just be Seferian-Jenkins, although it could be aruged he showed the most dependable set of hands this spring camp. Hartvigson (shoulder) looks healthy and spry, and gives the Huskies a solid blocking-pass catching combination contributor.
* This could be the big year by Alameda Ta'amu that was thought to develop in 2010: He is an extraordinary presence in the middle of the UW's defensive line, and on Saturday, especially in the first half, he dominated the first-string run game.
He was virtually unblockable in the interior. After the game. Ta'amu was the first guy Sarkisian pointed out as a standout.
If he and the rotation of Everrette Thompson and Sione Potoa'e are what man the inside in the UW's increased reliance on the 4-3 defense, Ta'amu will be the matchup opposing offensive coordinators wil scheme to take away.
NOTES: A scary moment in the fourth quarter - right tackle Erik Kohler went down writhin in pain, and he stayed down - turned out bearable news. Kohler (left knee) suffered a mild medial collateral ligament (MCL) sprain, and will need four weeks of rest. ... Sarkisian noted the only player injuries that might linger into fall camp are to defensive lineman Chris Robinson (knee) and offensive lineman Nick Wood (hip). Robinson's injury is considered career-threatening. ... The "Dawgs" (No. 1 offense, No, 2 defense) defeated the "Huskies" (No, 1 defense, No. 2 offense), 31-14.