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Spring Practice Day 1 News and Notes

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The Huskies took the field but unfortunately without a key piece at OLB

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 19 Oregon at Washington Photo by Christopher Mast/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Today the Huskies began spring practices and Jimmy Lake spoke to the media which provided plenty of news about the program. We’ve compiled some of the key pieces of information and video snippets available for you all in one place.

Laiatu Latu Taking Medical Retirement

This is an incredibly unfortunate piece of news. Latu was expected to start opposite Ryan Bowman last fall but missed the 4-game season due to an unspecified injury. Zion Tupuola-Fetui ended up taking his place and shining but getting Latu back would’ve greatly helped UW’s depth this year as well as shored up the position in years to come. Latu played 215 snaps as a true freshman and flashed at times as a future star.

The transfer in of OLB Jeremiah Martin from Texas A&M makes more sense now that we know that Latu is exiting the program. The Huskies have Bowman and ZTF returning as the expected starters at the OLB position now for the fall with Martin and Sav’ell Smalls probably starting as 2nd on the depth chart. Draco Bynum, Bralen Trice, Jordan Lolohea, and Maurice Heims will also be on the roster (provided no transfers out) in the fall.

Best of luck to Latu moving forward. It’s absolutely crushing that he doesn’t get to pursue his dreams of the NFL since he clearly had a chance to get there. We’ll miss you Laiatu and hopefully the injury won’t impact your ability to live a normal pain-free life moving forward.

Gilchrist and Kizer Officially Done

This one wasn’t much of a surprise. Taj Davis was the 3rd opt-out from the fall and he was re-added to the roster and at practice this morning. Kizer and Gilchrist not having any of those things happen were a clear sign that they did not intend to return. Kizer had a history of back injuries so if he had chosen to take a medical retirement that would’ve made sense even without COVID. Gilchrist never cracked the depth chart and has gotten his degree so again it made sense that he wouldn’t be returning.

Additional Notes

  • Richard Newton was seemingly in the doghouse at the end of the season and that may not have changed (or he could’ve just tweaked something recently).