Huskies Insider Blog

Comments from Steve Sarkisian after Wednesday's practice

Could the weather be an impact?

It can be, if you’re not prepared for it. That’s why, really, the last two weeks we’ve been out in it. Especially the last two days, the comfort level has kind of set in more. Our guys are used to it. They’ve kind of embraced it. It’s actually been kind of fun.

Is it better to have elements make practice harder?

Yeah. Sometimes they’re a little bit extreme, the last couple of days. But I do think there’s something to be said that if it does rain Saturday, we’ll be prepared for it. If it doesn’t, we’ll be prepared for that as well; that’s the easy part of it. It’s been a good experience getting out there, and I think our guys, again, have really embraced being out there in the elements.

Does it feel like Apple Cup week out there?

Yeah, of course. That’s college football. I know people say, ‘oh, it’s just another game.’ And the reality of it, it isn’t. That’s a rivalry game, and that’s the pageantry of football. A lot of guys on our team grew up playing with guys on that team or against guys on that team growing up, or in high school or all-star games. So I think it carries a little added incentive. And then, obviously, the bragging rights of it all. But that’s what college football is all about. That’s why we do what we do – to enjoy these experiences

On Colin Tanigawa’s MRI results

ACL. Torn ACL.

When will he have surgery?

We’re just waiting for the swelling to go down before we have the surgery. But we do want to have it sooner rather than later.

Next week?

I’m hopeful of that. It’s on his body, and it’s how the swelling goes down.

Is the start of next season an issue for Tanigawa?

Well, it can be. Again, it depends on his body. We’re looking at, really, the beginning of next year from training camp is nine months out. From the first regular season game is 10 months out. You’d like to think he could be back by then, but that’s the perfect rehab. So we’ll have to see.

On how he’ll start on the offensive line Saturday

We’ll start Nick Wood at left guard, but we’ll be prepared to mix a couple of other guys around. Not because of guys not playing well, but some guys have earned opportunities. Micah’s done some good things at tackle when he’s been in – hasn’t been perfect, but I think he’s getting better and deserves some opportunity to jump in there as well.

On Kelemete missing from Monday-Tuesday practices

Yeah, he’s back. He’s back today. Personal reasons and nothing that was health concerns to him. It was just personal reasons.

On Jamora and Johri Fogerson and guys like that being 100 percent by the start of next season

I hope. Obviously, a long shot for spring ball. But hopefully, by the time training camp rolls around. Those are some big losses, most notably Hau’oli. Not having him on our defensive front has been big this year, so it will be great to get him back.

On why Nick Wood earned the starting nod?

It was a natural fit for him at that position. And he went in the game and did an admirable job. Even the one holding penalty is a bit questionable. He did a nice job. I think he’s playing with quite a bit of confidence. He’s matured quite a bit from two years ago, when he started for us previously. So I feel good about what he can contribute to us.

On closing practice

"Just to be with us.  This is kind of the last regular-season game for the seniors, and I think there are some intimate moments there that I like to share with us and to be to us.  That's not anything against us guys or anybody else, but it's just a chance for us to be together, and we like to cherish those opportunities when we can."

On the safety spot

"Justin (Glenn) was really back out there, looking good today.  Will was still pretty limited with the stinger issue, and we're trying to limit the hits on him just to see how healthy we can get him by kickoff time."

On Garret Gilliland

Good.  Garret was back out there today, Jamaal Kearse was back out there looking good at the linebacker spot that were looked pretty good out there."

On Alameda Ta'amu being in a boot last week but played at OSU

"And he quite honestly played pretty well.  We're still striving for more production out of Alameda.  Even thought he's playing well, to get more production.  And I think in an odd way, Danny Shelton coming in and playing has helped that, because Danny has been a playmaker for us when he's come on the field.  He's recovering fumbles, he's causing fumbles, he's getting sacks, he's getting tackles - and in a good way that's helped Alameda to see a young guy come in with a bunch of energy.  They've helped each other; Alameda's wisdom has helped Danny, but Danny's energy I think has helped Alameda."

On Alameda coming off the field on certain third downs against OSU

"We were trying to get more speed on the field.  Obviously we were searching, at one point there, trying to create a pass rush, so that was a package we had to get more speed rushers on the field."

On how last week helped Keith

"Oh yeah, he looks great.  He really looks good - the bounce and spring in his step.  It's an easy thing to drop back and throw the ball when nobody's around you; it's your ability to make the sudden movements and move when a 3-technique is in your face or a defensive end is up the field rushing.  And that was the biggest concern.  He just couldn't move great and do it for a long period of time.  He'd fatigue out.  For the last three days he's looked really good moving in the pocket and out of the pocket - much more alive, to me, in his legs."

On Keith Price being back to where he was at the beginning of the season:

"I think it's a little hard to say. I have to see him actually full speed. This is as full speed as we can make it but when it's the real deal and you have to scramble and get down, that's when you can really gauge that. I do feel much better about where he's at and again his ability to move is the most critical part to this that he's just not a stationary target back there and it's his strength and ability to do that that gives us that confidence.''

On how Nick Montana bounced back in practice this week:

"I think he's been good. Again, the speed of the game has helped him. He's practicing even faster now and I think he's a young guy but he's a bright guy and he understands the things to learn from and to get better at.''

On what happens tomorrow:

"Everybody will have a place to go. We are going to practice in the morning and be on the field at 10 and be off no later than noon. And the guys will be free to go to wherever they want to go, and everybody's got a place to go, which is a good thing, I don't want anybody sitting in a dorm or an apartment by themselves, so they will have Thanksgiving and we won't be back until Friday afternoon to crank it back up.''

On going Friday to CenturyLink:

"That's our normal Friday routine. If we were on the road we would go to that stadium to go to anyway so we are just doing it the way we customarily  do it.'' On anyone going to his house:

"Nobody wants to come to my house. I don't think they want to talk football with me all afternoon.''

On if Price could be 100 percent by the bowl game:

"I would think that would be a little bit of a long shot to be 100 percent by a month's time or whatever it is. I would expect with a really good off-season and rehab that the strength and everything will be back to normal to where we get Keith Price back as we know him from training camp. And that I think will take some time, that might take us all the way to spring ball to get to that point.''

On if he would need minor surgery:

"We don't think so but we will do a post-season evaluation of him like we do with all of our players to assess any potential surgeries that need to take place and obviously we will have to look at him to see if there is anything there.''

On it being motivation to try to get into a bowl game:

"I don't think so. I think  more than anything we just want to finish strong. Obviously we were disappointed in the last few weeks of the season and how they have gone and our guys really want to finish well, they really love the opportunity to play Washington State in the Apple Cup, the first time to play at CenturyLink is exciting to them, and the seniors wants to close this out the way that they envisioned to close it out and that's finishing the season strong at 7-5 and going to a really nice bowl game and walking off the field one last time with their buddies as a winner before the bowl game, so there is a lot of good motivation, but not where we are going. That's out of our hands, quite honestly.''