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Times reporter Bob Condotta keeps the news coming about the Montlake Dawgs.

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June 5, 2008 4:26 PM

Answers, volume seven

Posted by Bob Condotta

Here we go with another dip into the mailbag.

Q: How many scholarships will the Huskies have to give out this year?

A: This is an annual question that's really hard to answer this time of year. The obvious way to get a gauge is to count up the seniors on the roster --- UW has 16 players in their last year of eligibility. Figuring that the Huskies have a full complement of 85 this season (as they could) that would leave them 16 to give out. But other attrition is always possible, if not inevitable --- someone flunks out, gets injured, an incoming player doens't make it in, etc. So there's no hard-and-fast number at the moment. I think the best way to look at it is that UW will probably have 18-20, which will make for a smaller class than last year, and one reason coaches may be a little bit more conservative in handing out offers. But again, if a few things happen, they could suddenly have more spots. As coaches always say, it's a constantly moving target that never really locks in for good until shortly before signing day.

Q: Was Tyrone Willingham really getting ready to fire some of the other defensive coaches, such as Chris Tormey, if he had been able to hire DeWayne Walker from UCLA, and what does Tormey think of that?

A: Certainly, it appears on paper like he would have had to get rid of some current coaches if Walker can be believed that Willingham was willing to let him bring two UCLA assistants with him (for background, read here). However, sources have since said this didn't necessarily mean Tormey was gone --- he could have been reassigned to one of the other openings at the time (specifically, tight ends). You have to remember that coaches realize more than anybody what a cutthroat business they are in --- almost all of them have been fired or part of staffs that have been fired, many multiple times (consider that DL coach Randy Hart has made it through the end of the regimes of James, Lambright, Neuheisel and Gilbertson and is still here). So I think they take such speculation as part of the business.

Q: What's your gut feeling about the secondary this year?

A: That it will have better physical talent, but that it will also be brutally tested early and could take a while to find itself. I don't think there's any question that the talent in this secondary is better than it has been in a while. On the other hand, you could have new starters at all four spots (and what I mean is a guy like Forrester, obviously with a lot of starting experience, now at a different position) heading into an opening stretch facing three straight explosive offenses in Oregon, BYU and Oklahoma. I think it will be better eventually, but I also think people have to be realistic that teams don't turn into the 1991 Huskies over night. But longterm, the outlook appears bright.

Q: Who will win the placekicking job?

A: This figures to be one of the more hotly-contested battles of fall camp, and I think it's pretty wide open between Ryan Perkins and Erik Folk. Perkins is obviously struggling with his knee injury and admits his career is kind of a month-to-month thing. His health will have a lot to do with how well he can compete for the job. Folk, now apparently healthy, showed a strong leg in the spring and I would bet he handles the kickoffs, if nothing else. He wasn't as consistent with FGs in the scrimmages we saw. But due to his health and leg strength, it would be little surprise if he ended up with the FG job as well.

All for now.

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