Last season we only got 4 Husky football games. That sucked. The bright side? It’s a lot easier to go back and deep dive through every game in the offseason when there’s only 4 of them. To tide us over until fall camp starts next month we’ll be going through each of the games throughout the month of July with 1 week focused on each game.
I’ll start us off on Monday mornings with my running diary taken as I rewatched the game for the first time since last fall. Then we’ll follow up with more in-depth offensive and defensive analysis throughout the week.
Let’s get things started with the first game of the Jimmy Lake era: Oregon State.
- It feels weird to hear about the 4-person QB competition at this point and remember that we had no official word until warmups who was going to start even though most rumors pointed towards Morris. And now everyone except for Dylan is gone. As in not with the program. Thankfully, they’re all still alive.
- Watching the broadcast it’s hard to tell that it’s raining but the shots with the camera pointing directly at the lights reminds you that it was really pouring.
OFFENSIVE DRIVE #1- 15:00 1st Quarter
- Puka catches the first throw of Dylan’s career on an out route for a 6 yard gain on 2nd and 8. I’m going to get sad every time he catches a ball.
- Washington’s first 1st down of the Jimmy Lake era coming on a fullback dive to Jack Westover? Still weird. Or maybe no longer weird given RTDB but still not my cup of tea.
- Dylan’s first 3rd down throwing opportunity, Bainivalu looked like he expected an outside rush from the defensive end but the defender cut immediately inside and Henry couldn’t do anything more than shove him as he ran past. Morris instantly saw it though, got the ball out quickly to Pleasant in the flat and Kamari easily picked up the 1st down. A sign of things to come.
- And so it begins. Bynum drops a pass that gets there slightly sooner than he was expecting it. The Huskies run Otton and Bynum on crossing routes over the middle and get a little bit of a pick that gives Bynum a clear step. If Bynum catches it in stride then at a minimum it’s a gain of 17 but given where the safety is it probably results in a gain of 30 into the red zone. The pass was maybe 6 inches higher than you want it but Morris had to throw over a leaping defensive lineman so he basically put it exactly where it should’ve been. It was raining but this year if Bynum wants to be a true #1 guy then he has to come down with it.
- I really feel for Jaden Green on the botched snap resulting in the first Oregon State touchdown. He’s a true freshman making his first ever appearance in a driving rainstorm. If the season starts on time he’s doing it on a dry September day. Even though we essentially spotted the Beavers to a 7-0 lead I do remember still being confident about the outcome at the time.
OFFENSIVE DRIVE #2- 9:46 1st Quarter
- Donovan calls play action with some deep crossing routes on 1st down but Ale misses a block and Pleasant doesn’t see the rusher so Morris has to let go of it early and throws it at Jones’ feet. If he was able to properly step into that throw it’s almost certainly a gain of 20+ because Jones was wide open.
- The first true deep ball from Morris on 3rd and medium had no chance (ball landed out of bounds) but fortunately Nacua was held and the PI call gives them a free first down.
- Bynum with a gain of 15 on an end around and that play worked basically every time they called it this season. First guy had a free shot at Bynum but a quick stop start move saw him fly right in front.
- McGrew comes in with runs of 14 and 21 and the Huskies have their first points of the Jimmy Lake era. 7-7 UW.
DEFENSIVE DRIVE #1- 7:44 1st Quarter
- The very first defensive snap of the season and Zion Tupuola-Fetui gets lined up against a tight end and draws a holding penalty. I guarantee you that the next time ZTF plays against Oregon State they will never draw up a play where they require a tight end to successfully single block ZTF in order for it to work.
- Play #2? Pass break up by Elijah Molden. Everything so far making sense.
- On 3rd and long the Beavers try a screen pass to Jermar Jefferson but Eddy Ulofoshio knifes between a pair of blockers to force an incompletion.
OFFENSIVE DRIVE #3- 6:33 1st Quarter
- The Huskies keep it on the ground and Sean McGrew goes for 7 yards then 27 yards and Washington is already just outside the red zone. On the last run Washington went jumbo with 3 TEs and Odunze 2 each on either side of the offensive line to give a 9 man front.
- After 6 straight runs to start the drive the Huskies finally throw the ball and it’s the first career catch for Rome Odunze on a crossing route that picks up 3 on 2nd and 8 as Morris was under pressure and threw it a little outside so that Odunze couldn’t catch it in stride.
- On 3rd down and 5 from the 8 yard line Morris throws a catchable fade but Ty Jones can’t corral it and UW settles for a field goal to make it 10-7 UW. That marks the 2nd time Morris has thrown an 80/20 ball on 3rd down and the receiver hasn’t made the play for him.
DEFENSIVE DRIVE #2- 2:10 1st Quarter
- On a 2nd and 7 Asa Turner stumbled a little bit which let TE Luke Musgrave free for a 20+ yard gain if the throw could hit him in stride after UW’s blitz didn’t get home. Washington catches a break however when the ball is a little low and behind him and Musgrave can’t slow down enough to reel it in.
- Instead…on the next play ZTF working on Oregon State’s right tackle instantly pushes him back 3 steps and then gets around him to knock the ball out of Gebbia’s hand. Ulofoshio jumps on the fumble and that’s the first strip sack of the season for Zion. It’s also the first instance of Sav’ell Smalls’ college career where he confidently points to signal UW has it when there’s a giant pile and no realistic way to know who has it. My favorite part of every contested fumble.
OFFENSIVE DRIVE #4- 0:13 1st Quarter
- 2nd and 2 and the first instance of the season where I can say a nifty play call. UW lines up in the I formation and fakes the fullback dive to Westover which they ran on the first short yardage play of the game. Instead they pitch it out to McGrew who only has one linebacker to beat for the first down and the LB took 3 steps inside expecting it to come up the middle. He gains 8 yards before the safety is able to get over and contact him.
- On the next play they line up Otton at fullback rather than Westover. He still stones the linebacker trying to run blitz off the edge, a pulling Bainivalu seals the defensive end, and Pleasant scampers between them for 15 yards only being touched as he crosses the end zone line. Washington leads 17-7.
DEFENSIVE DRIVE #3- 14:09 2nd Quarter
- After Gebbia started the game 0/3, Oregon State finally figured out they should lean on Jermar Jefferson. He picks up 18 yards on 1st down as the 2 safeties Turner and Cook combine to be the first ones to touch him. The next play is a run for 7. And the next goes for 16. On that last one the tight end got just enough of a shove on ZTF to keep him from getting to the exchange and there was no one behind him as neither Molden nor Sirmon could get off blocks and Cook took a bad angle.
- With 12:17 left in the 2nd quarter, the Beavers have finally completed a pass. They pick up 6 after a receiver sits down in the zone in front of Jackson Sirmon and Trent McDuffie and is immediately tackled.
- 5’5 Champ Flemings caught a quick 5-yard out route and got absolutely blown up by Keith Taylor causing him to fly out of bounds.
- Jermar Jefferson runs the wildcat from the 3-yard line right into the back of his own offensive lineman and goes down with an apparent shoulder injury. He ended up coming back but I remember at the time feeling like that was the ball game if he was out. At that point Jefferson had 70 yards on 9 carries while Gebbia was averaging 2.2 yards per attempt through the air.
- Despite Jefferson going out, backup BJ Baylor takes a toss to the left with 2 pullers in front of him for the 2 defenders on the edge. Ryan Bowman has a chance to make a play but slips disengaging from a block at the line of scrimmage and it allows Baylor to walk in untouched. 17-14 UW.
OFFENSIVE DRIVE #5- 9:27 2nd Quarter
- Morris goes for a play action deep shot on 1st down with only Bynum, Jones, and Westover actually running routes and 0 check down options. He opts to launch it deep for Bynum who was not open and it was probably a blessing the ball landed 4 yards past either Terrell or the defender. I’m not sure if Morris could’ve waited another second before letting go given Newton’s pass protection from the RB spot but 4 defenders went with Jones and it looked like Westover was about to come wide open on a deep crosser.
- Every drive a little drop. Again, the ball on 3rd and 3 is maybe slightly behind Puka on a shallow crossing route but he’s wide open and already at the sticks so this is a clear 1st down and probably a gain of 8-10 if he just catches it and continues to jog forward. That makes 1 drop on 3rd down apiece for all of the starting 3 receivers.
DEFENSIVE DRIVE #4- 8:26 2nd Quarter
- On 2nd down the Huskies finally get to Jefferson in the backfield for a loss of 2 to bring up 3rd and long.
- Momma, there goes that man again. ZTF screams off the edge with another strip sack but an Oregon State offensive lineman falls on it this time to bring out the punt team.
- We’ll see for sure as I go through the rest of these games but if memory serves this was pretty much the only time all season Trent McDuffie got to return a punt with space. He makes the most of it with several really nifty moves to gain 45 yards down to OSU’s 15.
OFFENSIVE DRIVE #6- 8:26 2nd Quarter
- Not exactly my favorite first but first back breaking penalty of the season as Ty Jones gets called for holding on what otherwise would’ve been 2nd and 1 from the 6 after a nice run by Richard Newton.
- I forgot about the weird play on 3rd and long where Nacua ran a slant, caught it, made it past the line but fumbled back behind the line where he recovered it to make it 4th and 1. Newton gains 3 on the next snap to make it 1st and goal.
- It takes 3 tries as Newton got to the 1⁄2 yard line twice but finally a QB sneak by Dylan Morris gets the Dawgs into the end zone. 24-14 Washington.
DEFENSIVE DRIVE #5- 2:11 2nd Quarter
- The special teams woes (outside of McDuffie’s punt return) continue as 5’5 Champ Flemings gets out past the 40 before kicker Tim Horn ends up bringing him down.
- Oregon State gets 12+ yards on each of the first 3 plays of the drive and within 40 seconds are already within easy field goal range.
- Washington forced a 4th and 1 but Oregon State goes for it in a similar spot and with similar results as Jefferson easily picks it up. After a Gebbia misthrow Jefferson takes it for the second OSU score on a toss play of the night. Washington lead cut to 24-21 with 0:18 left in the half.
OFFENSIVE DRIVE #7- 0:13 2nd Quarter
- Washington runs the ball with 13 seconds left from their own 25 which I personally hate. If you think you realistically have a chance to get in field goal range then throw the ball. If you don’t want to risk something bad happening, then take a knee. It was almost the worst of all worlds as Pleasant picked up a 1st down and then had the ball stripped but fortunately his knee was down. Would hope Jimmy learns not to do this in the future.
Given how long this got I’ve divided this up into 2 halves. Check out the 2nd Half Rewatch Diary right here.