Here we go with Day Five of Spring Practice. It is around 55 degrees out under broken clouds and a little windy which means it is great weather to practice in if you are a player. Coaches prefer a little more heat to help melt some of that weight off.
Mike Holmgren was at practice today. He spends a little time at Montlake since his son in law Matt Peterson is the program coordinator. Bellevue DT Julious Moore made his first practice of the spring. He is a heavy UW lean and I wouldn't be surprised at all to see him pull the trigger this month.
One thing that was never tolerated under Ty Willingham was fighting on the field. It still happened but when it did the players were punished. Fighting is actually one of those elements I like to see in practice from time to time. It is a great indicator of emotion and free spirit out on the field.
The gloves came off today for the first time when Anthony Boyles and Quinton Richardson got into it. It got a little out of control when a number of linemen came rushing in and Sark wasn't pleased with that. One on one scuffles are going to happen but team brawls won't cut it. The team ran some gassers as punishment.
It was another sub par day for the QB's and the offense. Sark called this practice Turnover Wednesday. The whole idea is for the offense not to give them up and the defense to get them. The offense obliged all afternoon.
Demetrious Bronson continues to impress. He rattled off a 30-yard run today and he is working himself into position for playing time this fall. Curtis Shaw is the overall leader but he sat out most of practice today after getting dinged on Monday.
The impression I am getting from my friend on the phone is the offense is way behind the defense at this point which is what you expect at this juncture. A lot of that has to do with the learning curve at QB and on the offensive line. Most of the team focus today was on red zone performance. The defense was the overall winner again today.
Erik Folk was 4-6 today kicking field goals.
Locker once again struggled with his accuracy and Sarkisian said that "we are fighting for consistency'' at that QB spot. Sarkisian said that Locker and Fouch were each "a little up and down'' today, particularly in the red zone offense, which was an emphasis today. Still, Sarkisian said Locker is unquestionanly the starting QB citing huddle presence and game management as other aspects that have him ahead right now.
"I just think they are excited," UW Head Coach Steve Sarkisian said of the scuffle. "They are competing, they are battling. We're right down by the end zone...we just have to teach these guys how to control their emotions and where to exert their energy. Their energy should be on the next snap, not on the fight. We'll learn from it. But I'm excited they were fighting about something. We just need to focus and where to put our energy."
After only one week it’s hard to say they are already a better team, but in a lot a ways how they are doing things is making a difference. They appear to be having fun, and practices have a much more of a college feel to them. I think the practices were stale or dull in the past because we were trying to run a pro-style system and assumed that the kids were mature enough to handle it.
"Fighting with pads on is not toughness. Toughness is being tired late in the fourth quarter and still being able to focus."
Coach Sarks Top Five
Players that stood out today were Chris Izbicki, EJ Savannah, Darion Jones, and Demetrius Bronson.
1. Players of the Day: On Offense Mykenna Ikehara and on Defense Victor Aiyewa.
2. Play of the Day: E.J. Savannah's hit on David Freeman during Team Period.
3. Coach of the Day: Johnny Nansen ”Its all about the pigskin!”
4. Thought of the Day: It is important to recognize the teachable moments.
5. Team Competition Winner: Defense