The annual media blitz accompanying the start of the college football season started in earnest on Monday. Steve Sarkisian held his innaugural game week press conference and radio show of the new season.
The most interesting part of it to me was the simulated road trip the squad took last Friday to the Seahawks practice (VMAC) facility. The team practiced on grass and stayed in a hotel to simulate a road trip.
Washington didn't win a game on the road last season and the coaches are doing everything they can to mentally prepare their young team for the road.
"We're just trying to get better at everything we're doing. Obviously last year, we didn't perform as well as we would've liked on the road. So we tried to mock a road game. We went and stayed at another hotel here in town that was not our traditional home hotel. We went through our Friday walk-through as if we were going on the road, we went to the hotel, we had our meetings, we woke up there and had our meetings again, we got on the bus, we went down to VMAC, we put on our road uniforms and simulated a game on the road."
True frosh Michael Hartvigson will be the backup TE going into the season. Hartvigson has the size to help out as a blocker and showed soft hands throughout camp.
Sean Parker will back up Nate Williams at FS. Parker had a great camp and will make a big impact this season. Sark went on to say Parker played well enough to earn a starting position and the only reason he was not starting is because Nate Williams is ahead of him.
Everette Thompson won the starting job at DE, but De'Shon Matthews will also play quite a bit. Hard to tell how many snaps Thompson will be capable of this early in the season, but the coaches believe he is a better physical counter to BYU's huge tackles.
Washington will travel with 76 players to the BYU game.
TB Deontae Cooper and LB Brandon Huppert are the only players on the roster ruled out of Saturday's game because of injury. Cooper will have surgery next week.
LB Cort Dennison is practicing and he says he will be at 100% by game time. Dennison who is from Utah will be returning home to play for the first time since high school.
DE Kelani Aldrich practiced a bit yesterday but is still listed as doubtful.
WR James Johnson has practiced two days in a row and is pushing his way back into the lineup.
LB Cort Dennison is a little sore but will be good to go this weekend.
How to stop Jake Locker
The Deseret News interviews BYU players and the coaching staff on how they plan to stop Jake Locker.
"Anytime you face a player of that caliber, you get excited," BYU defensive end Vic So'oto said of Locker. "You want to play against the best, and he's obviously one of the best in college football. It's fun and exciting to have a measuring stick to see where you are as an athlete and as a defense."
USC WR Kyle Prater, one of the top recruits in the country last year, will likely redshirt this season; he's banged up with assorted lower body injuries. Back up center Abe Markowitz will miss half the season with a broken foot.
Arizona State QB Steve Threet, a transfer from Michigan, has won the starting job over Brock Osweiler, though both are expected to play.
Arizona opens up on the road against Toledo, prompting the question: what is a Pac 10 team doing playing on the road against a MAC opponent?
UCLA QB Kevin Prince is still being bothered by a strained oblique muscle, limiting his time in camp. It only hurts when he is running or throwing.
Oregon State plays Boise State and TCU this September. The Beavers may be the only thing that stands in the way of those two teams going undefeated this season.