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

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August 13, 2008 8:00 PM

Husky nightcap, day 10

Posted by Bob Condotta

A recap of the day that was:

WHAT HAPPENED --- The Huskies held two practices, going in full pads in the morning and helmets, shells and shorts in the afternoon.

THE BIG STORY --- The Huskies received a welcome addition Wednesday afternoon as defensive tackle Senio Kelemete of Evergreen High joined the team. Kelemete, said to now be pushing 290 pounds, missed the first eight days of camp while finishing up a class to complete his core-course requirements.

UW coaches have said Kelemete will immediately join the fight for playing time up front.

UW now has all but three players from the Class of 2008 in camp. One other, defensive tackle Craig Noble of Taft High School in Los Angeles, is still awaiting a score on the California High School Exit Exam and could enrolled in a week or two. The others are RB Demitrius Bronson of Kentwood, whose enrollment this year is uncertain, and QB Dominique Blackman of Los Angeles, who said he won’t enroll until January.

INJURY REPORT --- UW’s injury list, seemingly growing every day, added another body as starting center Matt Sedillo sat out after suffering what UW coach Tyrone Willingham called ''a minor concussion.'' Willingham said he didn’t think it would result in a long-term absence.

Among other Huskies who also sat out Wednesday were QB Jake Locker (hamstring), TE Michael Gottlieb (hamstring), RBs Brandon Johnson (calf) and Brandon Yakaboski (hip flexor) and CBs Anthony Gobern (leg) and Byron Davenport (ankle).

None, however, are considered serious and Willingham said that with two-and-a-half weeks until the first game Aug. 30 at Oregon, he isn’t yet panicking.

"I don't think it's any more injuries (than usual) in terms of your starters,'' he said. "Any injury is a concern. But I'm not overly concerned right now. These things happen. … I think we will be okay come gametime.''

JOHNSON CLEARS UP INJURY --- Reporters were under the impression that Johnson, the projected starting running back heading into camp, was sidelined while dealing with complications from off-season knee surgery.

Instead, RB coach Steve Gervais and Johnson each said he is ailing with a new injury in his calf area and that the knee isn’t really an issue right now. Johnson said a muscle in his lower-leg ''just pretty much knotted up on me'' late last week and began to swell. He said he thinks he could be back soon, saying "it's nothing major."

Johnson is sidelined at a time when UW coaches say they need to begin whittling down the competition at tailback.

But Johnson said he isn't that concerned.

"I understand we are going to rotate and I'm fine with that,'' he said. "But as far as my starting job being taken, I'm not worried about that.''

QUESTION OF THE DAY --- Where is Chris Izbicki fitting in and looking right now, with Gottlieb hurt?

A: Sounds as if Izbicki is third on the depth chart now behind Walt Winter and Kavario Middleton. TE coach Brian White said today that Middleton would be the backup to Winter with Gottlieb out. He said Izbicki is doing fine. Instead, I think this is a case of Middleton really coming on and offering something the other TEs don't --- a big target who could be a big-play threat immediately.

Speaking of Winter, he's becoming one of the more interesting stories in camp, appearing to finally be in position to play regularly. Coaches say his blocking has finally gotten to a point where he can make an impact at TE, the position where he moved two years ago from defensive end.

"It's though because blocking is a lot different than defense,'' Winter said. "You're trying to push instead of trying to get off blocks --- you have to control the man rather than get away from him. But I'm working on my feet and knowing where to go and where you want the man to go and moving him in that direction.''

Winter says he loves the position now.

"I love playing tight end,'' he said. "Any way to get on the field is what I want, but if I could play any position it would be tight end. I like blocking, I like catching. It's a good spot for me.''

WHAT'S NEXT --- The Huskies will practice once today.

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Posted by bellingham husky

9:34 PM, Aug 13, 2008

kavario is a big targer

Posted by mfsthorn

9:49 PM, Aug 13, 2008

Just a completely random thought, and NOT trying to start a rumor ...

BUT ...

doesn't Chris Izbicki have a court appearance tomorrow (or, at least soon)? Perhaps the coaches are just waiting to see how things turn out before deciding whether or not they can count on him

Posted by Formerly Guest

9:49 PM, Aug 13, 2008

Bellingham,
I think "targer" is Greek for bad-ass, and Bob doesn't like to use profanity because of the number of pre-teens reading this blog every day.

Posted by jh

10:43 PM, Aug 13, 2008

omg you just wrote a swear word, I am going to cry and go tell mommy about you. I'll probably be grounded for a week just for reading it.

Posted by boondawg

11:24 PM, Aug 13, 2008

Why for doing what you cougars do on a regular basis?

Posted by Husky19

1:03 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Middleton is going to cause all kinds of mismatches. He will not lead the team in receptions but his mere presence will cause nightmares for defensive coordinators.

Posted by John

3:36 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Running QBs need a good receiving tight end.

When the linebackers and safeties constantly have to keep an eye on Locker, they won't be able to cover a tight end streaking across the middle unless they want to hand Jake 10 yards.

Posted by caineman

4:40 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Go Don James.....
I am glad he ripped the non conference schedule. The administration should be FIRED...
All of them, they are not helping the football program they are hurting it.
UW prisident... step down...
You are an idiot!!!

Posted by Formerly Guest

5:38 AM, Aug 14, 2008

JH,

Please also tell your mom that I have really enjoyed her posts, and that a healthy interest in the World of Warcraft isn't bad, everyone needs hobbies. And you're probably not the only one with a Batman bedspread.

Posted by Formerly Guest

5:47 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Regarding Don James thoughts on the schedule-
-TW can't shoot the athletic director, since he doesn't nave one
-It has been very well documented how while this year's OOC schedule is a killer, it was inavoidable as they already tried to massge the last one into one more reasonable and that gave them no wiggle room to squeeze out this one
-It seems scheduling LSU next year still fits in the accepted strategy of 1 great team (LSU), 1 good team we should beat and 1 cream puff
-Many people on here have documented that despite decent OOC schedules, we have done Ok with that. It is the conference where we have not been competitive

It will also be interesting to see what Mello and the other guys fighting with Augiedawg a few threads back have to say on this.

I think Augiedawg asked if the great DJ came out and said get off TW's back, he has won enough, would people leave him alone. I think the response was that you can't take at face value what DJ says about TW in the media, since he is obligated to say something supportive.

My sense is the comments today are all very heartfelt and genuine, and to be taken at face value. Afterall, he is being very critical of the atheltic department leadership and going out on a limb. I don't think he would bother doing that unless he really meant it.

Posted by Formerly Guest

5:53 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Formerly Guest,
On shooting the AD, I guess you could also make a bad joke on this and reference the famous "lack of bullets" quote if you wanted...

Posted by Dave

6:04 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Bob,

The camp roster has 105 players. I your guess since camp has started you have mentioned 20 names. How about spreading it around a little.

Dave

Posted by BizProdigy

7:00 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Formerly Guest ! Excellent post!! Brought a tear to my eyes I was laughing so hard !!

GO DAWGS!!!!

Posted by BizProdigy

7:01 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Formerly Guest -- I'm referring to the JH comments ... thought I should point that out..!

Posted by onewoodwacker

7:02 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Re-post from a couple of days ago:

To All -

Just a reminder to all Husky faithful - we still have 17 days before the opener at Whoregon. Concerning injuries- in football - 2 1/2 weeks is a long long time. Don't fret until we know who's in the starting line-up on game day.

Step up to the plate and continue to talk trash to the Whoregon Yuks - alas they have earned it.

In the meantime we will have to start calling our All-American QB - "Jake the Rake" - as he will be handing rakes out at the end of the game so all the quack faithful can scrap up the duck shit left on the Not-So-Hotsen Stadium floor from UO's crappy, embarassing, lack-luster, quitter type play.

I predict this - we WILL run your undersized duck asses into the ground - you will be humiliated on National TV - Mike Bellotti will do his whinner rant - and Phil Knight will been seen talking to Ty Willingham after the game, trying to hire him away from Washington - end of story!

Go Dawgs.

Posted by Banned

7:23 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Bob, Great article with Don James !

Loved the comments about the players and the new coaches. I was surprised that he was hard on the LSU scheduling which had nothing to do with the previous AD. Wow, wastes no words.!

What thoughtful, reasonable opinions on the state of the rebuilding program. I just hope JH and friends now don't dismiss James as a "Ty apologist". and a coach who "throws players under the bus".

We are ready for Oregon and BYU !!!

Posted by poster

7:40 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Interesting article on Don James, I'm not surprised to read the things he said. It does, however, corroborate what some posters have been saying on this blog. That is, assuming Don James still knows something about football. If someone has an alternate view (fine), they should at least consider a way that DJ could be right in his assessment, make sense of it that is.

Of note:
"They seem like maybe they have better athletes as far as the overall squad"

"It's amazing how well we've done in recruiting with all the negative publicity"

"I think he's got guys who can coach and I think Tyrone can coach" ... "I don't know if you want to change coaches"


Posted by Ishmel

8:01 AM, Aug 14, 2008

DJ's comments about 'the hammer of Willingham's head' are spot on in my opinion. So many 'fans' on this blog and in the Husky Nation are eager to get rid of TW. I just don't see this as a good thing. I agree 100% with DJ in that a coaching change at this point only sets you back 3-4 more years. Despite the W/L record and negative press, TW is still able to bring in top talent (especially in Wash St.). This year's schedule is going to be tough. Next year will be too, but it plays out much easier than this year... plus all of these freshmen we gush about now will be a year older and experienced. We'll have as many as 20 starters back.

Some will disagree, but I truly think this 'dark cloud' hanging over TW this year is concern #1 with recruits this year.

I'm on the fence with TW. I like him, but I'm also concerned. I like the direction though it's unclear whether or not he's the one to deliver on it in the end. Too many of my weekends (last fall) were ruined by our boys squandering away 2nd half leads. Unbelievably frustrating. But... as frustrating as it was, I'm willing to let TW run a bit more (beyond this year) with HIS recruits. I think we NEED TW to stick around longer to continue to build stability into the program.

I'm sure about half of this blog is laughing at my last sentence... but I stand by it. Too many 'shake-ups' in the program only hampers efforts to bring in top talent (players, coaches, admins, etc.)

I think many of us dawgfans are so proud of UW football and moreover it's tradition that we fail to realize just how far the program fell post RN and during the Gilby year. The national media recognizes this as do these 4-5 star recruits we covet. I'm not a fan of recruitng rankings, but many here are so I'll cater... TW's recruiting classes (increasing rankings) reflect the evolving impression of our program in the eyes of these recruits he is trying to land. This "win or else" ultimatum isn't doing the program any favors with recruits (or AD's).

Posted by Jordan

8:13 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Great article with DJ Bob. I am glad that after two years someone actually asked him the question. While, I think it is clear he is going to be supportive and not talk completely freely in the media no matter who the coach is I also do not think James would say something he didn't believe. He has been interviewed far too many times to do that and is out of the game so why lie.

On to what he said. What I took away from the article is they're close and James knows it. As he said three stops in three drives in games and last season is viewed completely differently. The schedule comment is interesting. The one thing I wish you would have asked or maybe you did and he didn't answer or you didn't include it is, "DO YOU THINK IT IS EASIER IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL TODAY OR HARDER TO TURN A LOWLY PROGRAM AROUND. WAS YOUR TASK AFTER JIM OWENS IN THE 70'S EASIER THAN IF IT TOOK PLACE TODAY?" I think he was hinting at that with the schedule comment. Of course Willingham has had some tough seasons he has played the most difficult schedule in the country for several years now.

Also "the nature of the beast" means it is much more of a business now than when Don James coached. The irony is he had a lot to do with that. Getting players to stay over the summer to train, etc. But I think the fact it is much more of a business means there is much more parity and emphasis is put on TV dollars. TV dollars come in when you play Notre Dame, Oklahoma, and LSU.

Either way, Don James and Jake Heaps saying continuity at UW is important is enough of a reason for me to keep Ty on. But I don't think it's going to matter because we are going to have a winning season.

Posted by augiedawg70

8:22 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Is it not a great day to be a Husky!

Posted by Formerly Guest

8:23 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Ishmel,

regarding your thought that "Some will disagree, but I truly think this 'dark cloud' hanging over TW this year is concern #1 with recruits this year..."

I don't think ANYONE would disagree with that.

Bizprodigy,
Glad I could humor you. Also glad you are not referring to incoherent post where I was apparently talking to myself. How pathetic. I probably should never post anything again that early in the AM.

Posted by Jordan

8:23 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Banned,

JH and every other one of them are not even worthy of being the flies on DJ's sh*t. I could care less what their reaction is.

There might be some people here who were too young to remember so allow me. (which is in and of itself sad for several reasons) Don James is a football god at Washington. He is the Dawgfather. In a lot of ways he is the face of the entire university, still. And I can tell you that even today his opinion matters with the money people and many of the decision makers. So if he is saying this in the media it does and will have an impact with the people who matter. Trust me.

Posted by Jordan

8:25 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Why Augie?

Posted by HUGE Huksy Fan!

8:42 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Why? Cause we're one day closer to getting hammered at Autzen.

Posted by Caldawg

8:44 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Ishmel, I really like your post. Well thought out and I agree with it. I do not believe that Ty can get us to the National Championship Game. I have said this before. I say this based on his past record. I don't like his personality. Not sure he even has one. But I do know he is bringing in the kinds of athletes I want representing my school. Unless this team totally tanks and seems to not be supporting their coach I can not recommend getting rid of Ty. I don't think that will happen. He has the team headed in the right direction so give him next year. If things go like I expect he will win 7 or 8 games the next couple years. He will continue to bring in the 4 & 5 star recruits. When we have been close to the BCS game but not getting there for a couple years in a row then make the change. The base will be there and someone can be brought in to take the final step and another National Championship. Making a change after this season would be a mistake unless the year is a total failure.

Posted by Husky Fan In New York

8:48 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Q. Richardson makes honorable mention for All redshirt team. Think only other school to make it is USC (of course) and Ryan McCants of OSU:

http://cfn.scout.com/2/779244.html

Posted by poster

8:49 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Jordan (8:25),

As they say in the Marines, "another glorious day in the Corps." Actually, I was a Marine and I never heard it there, but I did hear that in the movie Aliens, but, point being every day is a great day to be a Husky.

Posted by augiedawg70

8:49 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Coach James spoke the truth. And the truth shall set us free from our doubts. Who would have thought it, he's a Typologist! Sometimes life just works itself out and payback makes you smile.
Come on Mello, why don't you say James is settling for mediocrity. Say something clever, a lot of people are waiting.

Moving on -- This season is going to be fun for the first time in years. Our team is too young to win them all, but I think it's going to be a hell of a season with lots of ups and downs, but our team will not give up. Plus, we will beat Oregon, and finally, after all these years, Notre Dame.

It is a damn good day to be a Husky! Revel in it and count the days until 08/30/08.

Posted by Bob Condotta

9:07 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Dave --- I think you're exaggerating quite a bit, but do you have some players in mind you'd like me to mention? The way it works, we can logistically only ask for 4-5 players a day to speak with. I've pretty much asked for a different 4-5 each day. Also, make you sure check the paper and on-line. There are different items there, including a "Meet the Huskies'' bio box, which today focused on Ben Ossai. But again, you have someone in mind?

Posted by boondawg

9:10 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Why is it that because a team is young they are imediately ranked low? Experience is, at times, a good judge of ability, but it's not the only factor. This desire that people have of 'predicting' the outcome of a season places so much importance on experience because that is the only measure that they have to judge a future team. The only problem is that these predictions are rarely right (note last season's rankings changing about every week) because teams do the unexpected and that is the reason we watch college football. Nobody expected Illinois to turn their season around the way they did. No one expects this team to do well, but the talent is there so don't count them out just yet, the season hasn't even started.

Sure there are plenty of unknowns but, call me crazy, that actually makes me even more excited to see what this team can do.

GO DAWGS!

Posted by jh

9:10 AM, Aug 14, 2008


...it will be interesting to see how fast Don James' comments will be forgotten once willingham starts the 2008 football seson 0-3 and 1-4...

Posted by Seattle Dave

9:19 AM, Aug 14, 2008

(different from poster "dave" and "cosmodave" above)

Look closely at what DJ said. His comments about Ty are very much like his comments about Gilby, and for that matter Neuheisel when they were in the big chair. DJ is never going to come out and throw anyone under the bus because 1) he is too classy for that and 2) coaches always have each other's back. When was the last time any coach called for any other member of the fraternity to be fired? Not saying he doesn't believe what he said, but if he said the same thing when Gilby was HC then let's take it with a grain of salt.

His strongest remarks were against the non-conference schedule and specifically the upcoming LSU game. And personally I don't have a problem with giving TW or any Husky coach a total pass on the non-conference games and just judging them on the Pac-10 record. The problem is TW has done far worse in the Pac-10 than in the allegedly overpowering non-conf schedule.

Posted by Jordan

9:25 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Poster,

I agree 100%. It is always a great day to be a Husky.

Posted by HUGE Husky Fan!

9:32 AM, Aug 14, 2008

It is a great day to be a Husky, and it will be for 17 more days! Woohoo!

Posted by poster

9:42 AM, Aug 14, 2008

It's hard to spin what DJ said any other way. In fact, it is a lot easier to take Don James at face value than it is to take something he actually said and spin it as some sort of couched point that he also made in reference to Gilby (maybe dig up what he said in reference to Gilby, and if they are similar enough you have a stronger point).

As posted above, he said, "They seem like maybe they have better athletes as far as the overall squad", and "It's amazing how well we've done in recruiting with all the negative publicity", and "I think he's got guys who can coach and I think Tyrone can coach" ... "I don't know if you want to change coaches"

Seems to indicate his views about progress in the program, and if that isn't clear enough about what he felt we lacked last year, he also said something to that effect:

"I just look at last year, and with that schedule, if they had just played pass defense on the last drive of three games, they win three more games. I would look at that, and I wouldn't blame anybody, but obviously they didn't have any depth back there they just had a lot of youth."

Personally, I'll take what Don James says as what Don James means. I see NO reason yet to come to another conclusion.

Posted by Seattle Dave

9:48 AM, Aug 14, 2008

poster, in public DJ was clearly supporting Gibly the whole way. If you don't remember that from four years ago, too bad, I'm not gonna take time to trawl the internet in hopes of finding the quotes, but that was how it was.

Now pretty much everyone (and certainly Ty's biggest supporters) agrees that Gilby was the wrong man for the job so where does that leave us? Either DJ was wrong or else he will always support the current Husky coach no matter what.

Posted by Reality Check

9:55 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Good for Don James speaking the truth about these idiotic OOC schedules we've been suffering through. I am sick to death of reading that we have the #1 most difficult schedule in the country. I don't care what anyone says, at the end of the year 7-5 with an easier schedule will ALWAYS be better than 5-7 with a killer schedule. And, even if you win one of the killer games, it's a much more physical and injurous game to play LSU than it is to play San Diego State. Seriously, this schedule crap has just pissed me off big time. At a time that we're trying to rebuild a program, we keep playing teams like Ohio State, Oklahoma, Nebraska, LSU, etc. OOC. Frankly, it makes me feel bad for Ty, as he already has enough stuff to worry about. But then the morons in the athletic department have lined up a murder's row for him to walk! Thanks guys! In the future I do not want to see any more of this idiotic scheduling. It needs to stop now. The road to national rankings and prestige are paved with 8+ win seasons. That can be achieved with a 3-0 OOC record and 5-4 (or better) in conference schedule. It's not rocket science. Just play teams that aren't annual top 10 programs.

Also, I had a thought driving into work this morning. Is it possible that Chuck Nelson is going to be tapped as the next UW AD? I believe the Boeing Classic Golf Tournament is very soon, so it could be that the UW is simply waiting for that to be done before making the announcement. It would allow Chuck to finish his duties as chair of the event before moving into his new role as AD at the University of Washington.

I for one would be very happy with Chuck Nelson as the next AD at the U.

Posted by poster

10:02 AM, Aug 14, 2008

RC,

I will say something in the DJ article made me question my view (I do think he knows something about football, and I do think he speaks his mind). I like the tough OOC because the games are fun to watch, even in a close loss, but you and DJ make a good point about not every OOC game should be that type of game. Personally, I like tougher than 1 hard, 1 medium, 1 easy, but you can get that without having 3 hard teams. It does affect injuries, it does affect the other games, and it does affect psyche, and for that matter, coach employment.

Posted by Formerly Guest

10:57 AM, Aug 14, 2008

Seattle Dave,

You asked "When was the last time any coach called for any other member of the fraternity to be fired?"

I think it was years ago, and I think it was Lee Corso. So that may help your contention that coaches tend to keep their criticisms of their peers to themselves.

That having been said, James sounds to me a bit like he is shooting from the hip, genunine, and to be believed in his comments.

Posted by Seattle Dave

12:22 PM, Aug 14, 2008

off topic, but I have a friend who played for Corso at Indiana and says he is just as much of a doofus in person as he appears to be on GameDay.

Posted by Formerly Guest

12:46 PM, Aug 14, 2008

Seattle Dave,

He was calling for Alvarez at U Wisconsin to be fired after a last minute Ron Dayne fumble while they were running out the clock led to a come-from-ahead-loss as Northwestern was able to score a TD to win. 1996.

UW did not fire Alvarez. In retrospect it was the right move.

Posted by Seattle Dave

2:13 PM, Aug 14, 2008

FG, that is for sure, and was probably obvious at the time considering Alvarez had gone 22-9-4 and won a Rose Bowl in the three previous seasons.

I note that Alvarez took over a 2-9 perennial loser, and had them 10-1-1 Rose Bowl Champs in year 4. Something for Ty to aspire to.

Recent entries

Aug 14, 08 - 12:32 PM
No real news today

Aug 14, 08 - 11:24 AM
Izbicki enters not guilty plea

Aug 14, 08 - 10:13 AM
More on Kelemete's arrival

Aug 14, 08 - 08:44 AM
Don James speaks

Aug 13, 08 - 08:00 PM
Husky nightcap, day 10

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