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Oregon struggled in a massive game against LSU on Saturday, and the Pac-12 didn't look great overall. This is all Oregon State's fault.
Huskies cornerback Desmond Trufant snatched the game away from the Eastern Washington Eagles. Literally. With 35 seconds left and the Eagles down 30-27, EWU quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell threw the ball to the right of the end zone hoping to put the game away with a touchdown, but it was intercepted cleanly by Trufant.
Other than the last play of the game, Mitchell was by far the best player on the football field the entire game. He set career highs with 39 completions and and 473 passing yards. He ended the game with three touchdowns, two interceptions and compiled a quarterback rating of 124.5.
Until the last play of the game, Mitchell highlighted a noticeably weak Husky secondary. Eastern's spread offense simply could not be stopped the entire game. The Eagles only managed 31 yards rushing the entire game.
The Huskies wouldn't have won the game without their kicker, Erik Folk. Folk was three for three, converting from 40, 47 and 54 yards.
Moving forward, it looks like the Huskies will have to make some serious adjustments on the defensive end. Defensive coordinator Nick Holt will be busy preparing his defense and shoring up the weak secondary to face Hawaii this upcoming week. If the Huskies can't stop Eastern Washington, facing a potent Oregon offense is a bad nightmare.
Washington fans, head on over to UW Dawg Pound for in-depth analysis.
The game is far from over as the Eagles have stayed within one score going into the fourth quarter.
Huskies freshman wide receiver Kasen Williams caught his first career college touchdown with just under three minutes to go in the third quarter.
The Eagles struck right back and drove 73 yards on 6 plays culminating in a 43-yard pass from Bo Levi Mitchell to Greg Herd. Mitchell is now 29-50 with 348 passing yards and two touchdowns in just two quarters.
The Husky secondary is struggling without their leader, senior cornerback Quinton Richardson.
So far, Keith Price has performed decently, but has suffered from a few drops from his receivers so far. He has only totaled 79 passing yards through three quarters.
This game is way too close to comfort for Husky fans and it is clear that this team has played below expectations.
Husky fans, head to UW Dawg Pound for the live game thread.
Huskies Head Coach Steve Sarkisian told Elise Woodward of 950 KJR that Keith Price has an injury to his knee, but it’s nothing too serious. Also, wide receiver Jermaine Kearse left the game with a knee injury, and has not seen the field since the first half. Wooward reports that Sarkisian says it is not too serious also.
Thanks to a pair of field goal conversions by Washington Huskies kicker Erik Folk, the Huskies are up to a 20-13 lead over the Eastern Washington Eagles at halftime. Folk hit a 53 and a 47 yard field goal in the second quarter.
The Eagles are outperforming the Huskies statisically on offense. The Eagles have managed 15 first downs and 5-8 on third down while the Huskies have only managed seven first downs and are 2-7 on third down. The Eagles have gained 253 total yards, with 229 passing yards from Eagles quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell while the Huskies have only gained 136.
This is still a close game with the Eagles only one score behind the Huskies. Will the talent and depth of the Huskies overwhelm Eastern Washington in the second half? Time will tell.
Huskies starting quarterback Keith Price was limping in the last Huskies drive and is now wearing a knee brace. Backup quarterback Nick Montana was seen warming up on the sideline.
Head over to UW Dawg Pound to join the live game thread.
The Washington Huskies lead the Swoop 14-7 into the second quarter of their season opener. The Huskies have generated 110 yards of offense while the Swoop have put up 132 yards.
Quarterback Keith Price has completed eight of his 12 passes for 52 yards and two touchdowns. Price connected with Jonathon Amosa for a seven-yard strike with 11 minutes lef in the first quarter. Running back Chris Polk has helped move the chains with 28 yards on seven rushing attempts.
Eastern Washington came right back and scored two minutes later, using nine plays and several passes from Swoop quarterback Bo Mitchell to tie the game. The final pass was a 32-yard touchdown from Mitchell to Ashton Clark.
The Huskies managed only one first down and ten yards on the following drive, picking up a five-yard penalty along the way. The Swoop took advantage on the following drive to kick in a 28-yard field goal.
Washington responded in the beginning of the second quarter with an 11-play, 53-yard drive capped off by a 9-yard pass from Price To James Johnson.
The Swoop will get the ball back and get a chance to respond.
Keith Price is showing composure and confidence in his first start as Husky quarterback so far. He is 8/12 with 51 passing yards and two touchdowns so far. The most common tweet from Husky fans after that last touchdown? The Price Is Right. Get used to the saying, I have a feeling we’re going to be hearing a lot of it this season. The 10-yard James Johnson touchdown was his first touchdown since 2009.
Surprised that this FCS team is keeping up with the Huskies? Sacramento St. pulled off an upset over Oregon St. earlier, 29-28 in overtime.
The Eagles have jumped to a 10-7 lead at the end of the first quarter. Eagles quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell is 9-16 with 127 passing yards and a touchdown. The Huskies scored off of a 7 yard pass from Keith Price to Jonathan Amosa.
The Washington Huskies begin their 2011 campaign on Saturday with a rivalry game, of sorts, as they welcome the Eastern Washington Eagles to Montlake. For the first time, Washington will battle an FCS school, taking on a team from the lower division of college football to begin the season. But the Eagles are far from a slouch, as evidenced by their FCS championship this past season.
College football is back in the Northwest and we've got everything you need to know about the game covered.
Start time: Washington takes the field at 4 p.m.
TV information: The Huskies have the run of the Northwest this Saturday, with ROOT Sports set to broadcast their season-opener against the Eagles.
Radio broadcast: If you're unable to get to a TV, you can find it on the radio, live on 950 KJR.
Previews, previews and more previews: Your game notes can be found here. A preview of the Huskies 2011 season, from the perspective of a WSU fan, can be found here. For all the game-week coverage, head over here.
Predictions: In roundtable form, we gathered predictions for Saturday's game, and the Washington State Cougars' game. You can find them here.
Washington Huskies vs. Eastern Washington Eagles
Time: 4:00 p.m. PT
TV: ROOT Sports
Radio: 950 KJR
College football is here finally for Husky nation. The Dawgs open up their season against the Eastern Washington Eagles. EWU is coming off a FCS National championship and return 15 starters from last season, including quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell. Mitchell was named Lindy's Offensive Player of the Year in the magazine's college football preview.
The Huskies enter today's matchup riding a four game win streak stemming from last season's run that culminated with a Holiday Bowl victory over the Nebraska Cornhuskers. For the first time in four years, Jake Locker won't be under center for the Huskies, instead, Keith Price will be the Husky's field general for the 2011 season.
Fans will get their first look at the highly-heralded freshman in a game. Five star recruits Wide Receiver Kasen Williams and Tight End Austin Seferian Jenkins figure to see the field a lot. As of Friday night, no decision has been made on whether Running Back Chris Polk will play. Cornerback Quinton Richardson will likely not play today.
For more on the Huskies, check out UW Dawg Pound.
Jake Locker is gone, but Chris Polk returns to lead a Washington offense with plenty of weapons. How will the Huskies' 2011 campaign shake-out?
SB Nation Seattle and other local Seattle bloggers predict the score of the football openers of University of Washington and Washington St.
Washington Huskies (Last year's record: 7-6, Key wins: USC, Oregon St., Cal, Nebraska)
Eastern Washington Eagles (Last year's record: 13-2, Key wins: Villanova, Delaware)
College football season is finally here. While the Washington Huskies are coming off their first bowl win since 2000, the Eastern Washington Eagles enter this season as the FCS defending national champions.
The big storyline this offseason for the Huskies has been how the team will deal with the loss of Jake Locker.The team's successor will be sophomore Keith Price who saw action in eight of the Huskies' 13 games in 2010.
The Eagles lose their All-American running back Taiwan Jones but return arguably the best quarterback in the FCS, senior Bo Levi. After just one season in Eastern's program, Levi is sixth all-time in the school's record books with 37 touchdown passes.
Offensive Player to Watch:
Brandon Kaufman (Jr.), Wide Receiver
Levi's main target will be Kaufman, a returning starter who hauled in 1,214 yards and 15 touchdowns. Kaufman torched the Eagles' final two opponents en route to a national championship. He caught eight passes for 135 yards and a touchdown in the semifinals against Villanova and then proceeded to catch nine passes for 120 yards and two touchdowns in the national championship game against Delaware.
Defensive Player to Watch:
Renard Williams (Jr.), Defensive Line
The Port Orchard native was selected as a preseason first team All-Big Sky selection by football guru Phil Steele. Last year he finished the season with 9.5 sacks and ranked 17th in the FCS with a .78 sack per game average. He will be a player to watch in the trenches against the Huskies' offensive line.
Washington 31, Eastern Washington 10
The Washington Huskies are dealing with key injuries ahead of Saturday's season opener against Eastern Washington. Running back Chris Polk wore a no-contact jersey and back-up Johri Fogerson took some snaps, according to Ryan Divish. Senior cornerback Quinton Richardson also seemed to struggle and may not be ready for Saturday's game.
Polk had a great season in 2010 and was an integral part of the Huskies' offense. He started all 13 games and racked up an impressive 1,415 rushing yards, the second-highest output by any running back in UW history. Polk has been struggling to recover from a knee surgery about two weeks ago. His no-contact jersey today casts doubt on his chances to play in Saturday's game.
His likely replacement Fogerson is dealing with an injury of his own as he deals with the aggravation of his hip pointer. The injury derailed Fogerson's 2010 season and threatens the early part of his 2011 campaign. Both running backs, Polk and Fogerson, could be held out of Saturday's game, but no decision has been made yet.
Meanwhile, Richardson experienced a high ankle sprain on Aug. 13th that has limited him ever since. He practiced for the first time this past Monday and has been on the field the past few days, but the chances of him playing Saturday don't look too good in light of Divish's report.
The Huskies are in a tough situation just days before the beginning of the season. The team will wait and see how Polk, Fogerson and Richardson fare over the next few days before making any final decisions. If they do not play, though, younger Huskies will have a chance to step in and get some playing time early.
The Washington Huskies have yet to finalize who's playing and who's not playing in Saturday's contest with Eastern Washington. The biggest concern is whether tailback Chris Polk will be the main man on Saturday; although it's probably not necessary he plays max minutes, a healthy Polk is better than an unhealthy Polk going forward.
Steve Sarkisian seems encouraged based on what he saw on Monday's practice during the Pac-12 conference call. Both Polk and Johri Ferguson (currently listed as the third string tailback) could both still play on Saturday if all goes according to plan. Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times with more.
Sarkisian said that he is "not going to rule out'' that Chris Polk and Johri Fogerson could play Saturday. He said each "looked good running yesterday and I'm excited to see them today.'' He reiterated that if a decision is made to play Bishop Sankey that he will then play substantially the rest of the season. "If we do that this Saturday you are going to see Bishop Sankey the rest of the year. You'll see him be a factor on this football team not just a one-hit wonder on Saturday.''
Sarkisian is probably hesitant to burn the redshirt year of true freshman Bishop Sankey, who would almost certainly see playing time in the season opener if both Polk and Ferguson are ruled out. But if Sankey has to be used in the opener, using him all season long might not be the worst thing--if he's going to lose his redshirt, might as well give him as many opportunities as possible to produce.
Sarkisian also has some words about Keith Price.
He said what has helped Keith Price's progress is that he has "grown up in this system and hadn't known anything else before, so in some ways he's almost a little bit more comfortable in that aspect because he's never known anything different.''
Price's familiarity with the system could lead to better starts and better efficiency for the Washington offense. But will he be as adaptable as Locker was when he had to deal with pressure circumstances?
That much is unknown, but it looks like Washington football could be trending up in 2011.
For more on Washington football, head over to UW Dawg Pound.
Chris Polk is going to be the focal point of the Washington Huskies offense this season. Keith Price might be the man down the road, he might be familiar with the system, and he might have a lot of talent in the receiving corps, but UW will be a run-first team when one of the best tailbacks in the Pac-12 is suiting up for them.
Which is why Polk's health is of critical important to Washington succeeding in the Pac-12 next season. And right now he's not healthy, at least not enough to be sure that he'll be playing week 1. Polk might be tops on the depth chart, but he's far from assured of playing this Saturday. Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times reports.
Sark says on radio show that Polk did a lot of cutting drills today and looked good. But said test is how he recovers tomorrow.
Said again that he likely won't make a decision until Wednesday on Polk and that he feels good going with Callier/Sankey if needed.
It would make same sense for Polk to sit though. Washington doesn't need Polk to roll over the Eagles for 150+ yards and 15 carries, but they could find out who his number two man could be for the season. Sophomore Jesse Callier and freshman Bishop Sankey appear to be the primary backups, and getting relevant experience early in the season will help give Washington depth behind their feature back. Additionally, Price can get to settle into the Washington offense and get in a rhythm with his targets on the field, and give the team more confidence in their passing game. It might be more of an adventure, but the Huskies should be fine.
A healthy Polk against Hawaii and Nebraska though? Could be a bit more necessary.
For more on the Huskies, go to UW Dawg Pound.
The Washington Huskies football team has settled its depth chart for the season opener against Eastern Washington. But as is always the case with depth chart, there are more questions raised than answers.
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