Grading The Game

Quarterback

I can find little to fault Jake Locker for since he had Sun Devils climbing over him all night. As usual he put his team in a position to win the game. The interception in the end zone in the first half has to go down as a killer though. That took points off the board that could have eventually won the game. 22-38 passes for 279 yards and some nice runs equal another yeoman night for the junior from Ferndale.

Grade B plus

Running Back

Washington had difficulty getting things going on the ground but they did manage to put up the same types of total that Georgia and Oregon State who beat the Devils did. Chris Polk sat our more than usual because of his shoulder. Fogerson did an OK job but there is a wide gap between the two players. They work better in tandem. Polk's injury could nag him all season.

Grade C plus

Wide Receivers

Devin Aguilar had the game of his career last night with seven catches for 154 yards, Johnson and Kearse also had solid nights. Kavario Middleton was taken out of the game by the ASU rush. UW used the TE for blocking last night and not receiving.

Grade B plus

Offensive Line

To say they were overwhelmed last night was not an understatement. They played hard all evening but were physically overmatched by ASU. If you look at the overall numbers you realize that they still helped UW produce enough yards to win this game. That is the definition of an adequate line.

Grade C minus.

Defensive Line

I thought these guys played pretty well last night. Sure there were a few long runs but you can't put that completely on the defensive line. Linebackers and DB's out of alignment in addition to poor tackling were as much to blame for those plays than anything else. Alameda Ta'amu actually had his best day as a Husky. Daniel Teo Nesheim and Darion Jones both had great plays out on the ends. Fans need to realize that last night the major problems were behind these guys.

Grade B

Linebackers

This wasn't a great game for the linebackers. Too many missed tackles resulted from blown assignments, poor pursuit angles, and being out of position. As usual you had the great effort but the end result wasn't quite there. Mason Foster continues to play well...however last night this unit seemed to not be as united and disciplined as before. The temperature down on the field had to be a factor too.

Grade C

Defensive Backs

Not a pretty game was it. The Huskies allowed Danny Sullivan to complete 22 out of 36 passes for 295 yards without an interception. 50 of those yards came on the last ASU play of the game. That was the back breaker. There was a lot of things to take advantage of last night. ASU's top receivers weren't anything close to full strength. Williams limped most of the game and played at 3/4 speed. McGaha who was recovering from the flu wasn't much better but saved his best for the last play. Danny Sullivan had all the time he needed most of the night. No way did he deserve to complete that high of a percentage of his passes. So many wounded ducks being caught out there last night that could have been knocked down or intercepted with better coverage. The season ending injury to Justin Glenn has hurt this team. UW has a big hole to fill at safety. This was not Nate Williams finest hour.

Grade D minus

Special Teams

They weren't that special. A punt fumbled by Johri Fogerson robbed UW a chance to build momentum in the second half. It didn't end up costing UW any points but it took away a burst of momentum that appeared to be going UW's way. Folk missed a FG after being iced twice by Erickson. It looked like the laces were turned the wrong way on that one. To his credit he hit the FG before he was iced but the officials questionably ruled that the TO was called right before the snap. Will Mahan's last punt contributed to the loss by giving ASU much better field position than it should have. Perhaps you mark that against the coaches because it looked like a Chinese fire drill out there in the last stages of the game. Perhaps a timeout to settle things down was in order.

Grade D plus

Coaching

The Huskies are 3-4 and realistically with some better play calling they could or should be 5-2. You can always blame the ref's for the ND loss even though the play calling was a bit questionable. Last night you can put it firmly on the coaching staff for not managing the game well at all during the final two minutes. Mark this down for what it was...the Husky coaching staff wasn't prepared well for this type of scenario.

The sideline penalties need to end. Nick Holt needs to show some restraint and discipline on the sidelines. I love the enthusiasm but I have never seen a more penalized coaching staff in all my years of watching Pac 10 football. These guys are better than this and they need to get a handle on it.

Keep in mind that this is a young smart staff that will not keep making the same mistakes. This isn't Ty Willingham at the helm. Give the coaches the credit they deserve for taking over an 0-12 team and putting them in a position to win each week. A lot of this is some and mirrors going on...only an influx of talent which happens to be coming this off season will completely turn everything around.

That being said it is pretty hard to give these guys a pass tonight. They got sucked in early by Erickson thugish head game. In the end they blew the game by not being as prepared as well as they should have.

Grade D

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