Steve Sarkisian At Media Day, Part 1

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Spor

Here's some of what Coach Sark had to say at Pac-12 Media Day this past week. He touches on injuries, attrition, scholarships, and of course the situations with Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Kasen Williams.

On injured players from the spring and players recovering from injury:

"I'll get a full assessment on exactly where we're at from a medical point next week when I get back in town, and I'll sit down with our medical staff, and they literally take me through our entire roster, of anything anybody has had, whether from last season, through spring ball, through the summer. Whether a guy had a cramp, a twinge in his hamstring, a wrist, a whatever."

On any attrition and scholarship numbers:

"Nope. No. We're good. We're all the same. Anything of that sort that happens between now and next week I'll nail when we get going. We're right there. We're right at 85."

On Kasen Williams and Austin Seferian-Jenkins:

"It's hard because I really take a lot of pride in being there for our guys, and really trying to develop our players and helping them make great decisions and grow as men, so when guys make mistakes I take it hard. I take it personally because I feel invested in them. I feel like so much of what we do is, yeah there's the X's and the O's and yeah there's the conditioning, and practice and film, but as much as all of that is mentoring and talking. It's decision making and how to conduct themselves, and how they represent when they put on that W every day. So that part is what's hard for me. But I'm not naive to the fact that they are 18 to 22 years old. They are gonna make some mistakes, so I don't ever want to feel like I want to overreact, because it's not fair to them and I wouldn't have wanted it that way when I was a kid and made bonehead decisions. I want to make sure that the message is clear to our team, that they understand the standard that they're held to. That we're held to."

If announcing a course of action with ASJ would lessen any sort of distraction:

"Well, he's not done with the process yet. There's still things that he's doing that other people don't know that are part of our own requiremnets for him to earn his way back onto our team, so it's not finalized yet. And I don't think it's a distraction, quite honestly. We haven't started football, and when we start next week we'll address it one more time at that press conference before the start of training camp, and that's going to be it. We're going to move forward."

If no suspension means no punishment:

"I think the worst punishment is spending the night in jail and spending thousands of dollars when you're a college kid, and then the public humiliation you have to endure as a 20 year old. I think that is really severe. Now, that being said, that is all punitive. That's what the legal system does: it's punitive. We've tried to make it rehabilitative at times but I think the reality of it is those are all punitive punishments. As I've said before: when we get to a final decision on what we do, as much of what we do will be about developing Austin and rehabilitating Austin much more than punishment. I look at, every time in every incident we have with any of our kids, who really benefits from punishment and how severe that punishment is? And that's always the hard part when you're in this situation as a head coach. That's why I look at every incident separately, I look at every individual separately, because the true character of the individual and the incident that they were in is what's gonna depend on for the individual to earn his way back on to our roster."

"My job though, is not just to hand down punishment. If I wanted to do that I'd go be a judge. My job is to be a football coach and develop young men and to win football games, and I think we're doing a really good job of that."

On what he's looking for from ASJ over the coming weeks:

"There's things within the community that we're asking him to do, and there's things within our team that we're asking him to do that are not easy things to do, mentally and emotionally. And he's handled it really really well, to his credit from day one he's owned up to this thing."

There's much more to come, so check back tomorrow to see the continuation of what the Husky coach had to say about his team.

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