Welcome, my children, to the last
big word vomit S&S of the year
I initially wrote in my outline that “the receivers and Huard gonna look sexy in a real offense” — yes, that’s verbatim.
And then it came out that Husky Legend Jake Haener was about to go all Lebron James on our asses and COME BACK TO WHERE IT BEGAN* BABEEEY.
Sources: Fresno State quarterback Jake Haener has transferred back to Washington following head coach Kalen DeBoer.— Anthony Edwards (@edwardsanthonyb) December 1, 2021
*Technically not official yet but our boy Anthony’s on it
Now, I know that this isn’t even official so we and everyone else on The Whole Internet are jumping the gun a bit. Plus, I know some of you dear readers are old school types who maybe aren’t too fond of players transferring, especially in Haener’s case, having left Washington in 2019 after Jacob Eason was named the starter. I’d argue that by whooping ass in Fresno for the last two years, he proved without doubt that transferring in his case was the right decision. (My personal take on the modern transfer craze is that there’s times where, as articulated by Scott Frost, players can be given bad advice by people in their camp who’ve bought into their child/friend’s greatness while being naïve about the pros and cons of attempting to transfer all while the student athlete in question doesn’t have the life experience to make a comprehensively thought-out decision — *takes breath* — but there’s also times where student athletes are genuinely making the right decision for themselves and they deserve to have this autonomy since it’s their life and they have only four to five years to disproportionately impact their life’s entire path, not to mention many coaches can be total scumbags who feed these kids generous servings of bullcrap strudel on the recruiting trail and then they come into the program and realize these promises were bollocks. *Inhales the largest human breath ever taken* Anyhoo...)
But I am a sucker for a good old fashioned storyline. I’m also a sucker for winning.
Stir those two bad boys together, and that means I’m a sucker for Haener’s return.
On a side note, I feel like a lot of the #discourse around a potential Haener reunion is surrounded by a lack of acknowledgement that things change. Does that sound condescending? God I hope that doesn’t sound condescending... I’m so sorry if it does it’s not supposed to but I’m bad at using words...
I say this because it seems like there’s a decent chunk of the population who’s looked at how much butt Haener’s kicked at Fresno and immediately turned it into an assumption that he should’ve started at Washington two and a half years ago, or that he’s the same now as he was in July of 2019. But it’s possible to hold the two thoughts at once that A) Haener truly wasn’t the right choice to be QB1 then and B) he is now.
I’m not saying this is definitely true, but I feel like it’s barely even being brought up as a possibility. People get better and sometimes worse at things. Kind of a lot, actually
Now, no doubt there was immense pressure to start Eason, plus he also had a way higher ceiling, plus he had played better as a true freshman starter at Georgia than Haener had in his one disastrous first impression for Washington, no matter how small that sample size... But for those of you who were also following that fall camp with the rabidity of a coked-up squirrel looking for your acorn, you hopefully remember Jake Haener’s performance during the fall. Namely, that he would throw at least an interception per practice if not several. There were some reports that he at times would push the ball further downfield too, but with Pete’s m.o. of “interceptions are Satan’s scourge” combined with Eason’s higher ceiling, wouldn’t you make that same choice in his shoes?
This is all kind of moot, but I felt like throwing that possibility out there anyway because... well because this is my column so I can do whatever I want with it, woo!
But back to the whole concept of Lord of the Portal: Return of the Haener.
Personally, I think he makes the floor for this team next year way higher (and there’s a chance he makes the ceiling higher too, although who knows). Pluuuus — not that this actually matters — he has the added benefit of increasing the team’s fun differential by merit of this whole saga being straight out of the Writers Guild of America. Seriously, it’s like Friday Night Lights-level shenanigans if this comes to fruition (not season two during the WGA strike, obviously). That’s right, Jake Haener returning to Montlake would make Washington the official college football team of Connie Britton.
And if you don’t want your team to be the official team of Connie Britton, then that makes you downright un-American.
Now back to Sam Huard, which it seems like is the main reason some people aren’t fully onboard the Haener Freighter, mostly out of a fear — justifiably so — that this would make him transfer.
It’s hard to believe that Huard would do anything other than pwn total n00bs in Kalen DeBoer’s offense, so it makes sense we all want to just let that happen. And I don’t think it will take that long for that to come to fruition.
But he also just spent nine months presumably devolving under a completely dogshit offensive staff in a completely dogshit excuse for an offense. Not only will he be learning a new scheme — albeit one that looks much more quarterback-friendly and subsequently easier to slide into than whatever Jimmy Lake and JohnDon were running this year — but he’ll have to unlearn all that aforementioned dogshit just to get to a point of being able to be built back up again.
With that in mind, the theoretical Haener return could be the best case scenario: Montlake Jake Three (or Four or whatever) gets his redemption tour running an offense he knows perfectly, jumpstarting the DeBoer era because the rest of the team has the talent where there’s no need to waste next season breaking in a new quarterback’s lumps if possible.
Which brings us to the last thought:
Coaches taking over a 4-8 team usually are taking over an absolute turdstain of personnel, roster holes, and general mismanagement.
Contrarily, Kalen DeBoer is taking over a relative buttload of talent; I’m not saying anything controversial pointing out that the reason for this *dry heaves* 4-8 record was the garbage-level scheming and gameplans of Jimmy, JohnDon, and Bobby G, plus the sprinkle of backwards development from Scott Huff’s line coaching. Honestly, if it weren’t my team I’d be impressed with the old staff’s ability to take a roster like that and tank it to the bottom of Mariana’s Trench.
In other words, uh, all DeBoer DeHaener and Kalen train, amirite?
Do good things, don’t do bad things, and bow down to Washington.