UW Huskies vs San Diego Aztecs Grades

UW Huskies vs San Diego Season Opener
Washington 21 – San Diego 12

Source: UW Dawg Pound

Quarterback - Keith Price has had better nights and yes he also has had better blocking in front of him in the past. He still was a very adequate 25-35 for 222 yards and one TD but the deep ball and accuracy in the red zone were absent last night. Keith played a bit tight last night and the play calling didn’t really help him out either. Expect that to change next week on the road in Baton Rouge. - Grade B minus

Running Backs - Jessie Callier went down with an early knee injury and that doesn’t bode well for a position that is now paper thin. He will have an MRI to find out the extent of the injury. Bishop Sankey had a nice first half but he was consistently bottled up in the second and only gained 66 yards on the night. Sankey fumbled the ball away inside the enemy 8 yard line which effectively took 7 points off the scoreboard. Erich Wilson made his debut and looked solid when he got his chance to run the ball. The yardsChris Polk used to get with extra effort weren’t there last night which means the offensive line needs to step it up a bit in coming weeks. - Grade C plus

Wide Receivers and Tight Ends - ASJ and Kasen Williams both had big nights. It was nice to see Kevin Smith back in the lineup. Jaydon Mickenslooked impressive in his debut. He is going to do big things in the future. ASJ is the best looking TE I have seen in Montlake since Mark Breuner. He can really do it all at this point. Overall the group held on to the ball well but they need to do a better of job of getting open down field. - Grade B

Offensive Line - The unit as a whole needs to keep improving and do a better job if the Huskies want to end up going anywhere this season. Ben Riva was taken out after breaking his forearm. The units performance noticeably dropped when he wasn’t in the game. Don’t expect Riva back for 4-6 weeks. - Grade C minus

Defensive Line - These guys helped hold SDSU to only 12 points last night and that isn’t too shabby but I didn’t see enough penetration to be satisfied with the groups overall performance. They also gave up 199 yards to the Aztecs on the ground which doesn’t bode well at all for next week when we face LSU. 77 of those yards were gained by Katz on scrambles. - Grade C

Linebacker - John Timu went the wrong way a couple of times and missed a couple of tackle because he didn’t wrap up but for the most part he looked pretty decent. He forced a fumble which ended up being one of the plays of the night. Feeney is going to be a stud. He has great football instincts. I really like how they are deploying him. - Grade B

Defensive Backs - Desmond Trufant had one of his best games as a Husky. Tre Watson picked off a ball. The safeties were all solid. Shaq can lay the lumber and has great instincts. I didn’t really see anything I didn’t like out of this group of athletes. Will Shamburger scored a second half TD on a fumble return that probably was the play of the game. Grade A

Special Teams - First with the good. The coverage teams are noticeably improved and that all comes from more depth, speed, and experience being added to the roster. The accuracy of the kicking needs to improve. Coons didn’t come close on his FG attempt and Durkee really didn’t wow me with his punts. Both have seriously strong legs and will improve. We have noticeable speed in the return game but didn’t break one last night. Grade B

Coaching - The offense was tight last night and that is a very fixable thing going down the road. Sark didn’t call a great game but he had his team in position to score over 30 points last night if they had executed better. Defensively this team still has work to do but the Wilcox defense is a noticeable improvement over the Holt defense. - Grade B

The Pac 12 Network - Rick Neuheisel is the only guy with star quality (and he knows it) that they have in the studio. He needs to slow down and stop interrupting his cohorts. (Who is that sneering bald guy anyway?)

Rick came off at times last night like an arrogant jerk (Eddie Haskell) who doesn’t play well with others. Rick needs to listen better to others for people to take him seriously.

What they really could use is some maturity on the panel to offset Neu’s brashness…were Don James, Terry Donahue, Bruce Snyder, and John Robinson busy?

The extremely San Francisco-centric production values are pretty boring/repetitive and you can tell that they are having early problems selling advertising. There is a reason that DirecTV is playing hard ball with these guys…they aren’t very good at what they are doing and it will take some serious time before the quality of the network improves.

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