April 12, 2010
The Washington football team's spring practice season enters its third week today as the Dawgs will take the field Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
Six of the 15 practices are now in the books and, as with all spring practice seasons, there's a lot going on out on the field. New players are trying to make their presence known. Veterans are trying to finely hone their skills while trying to hold off the youngsters. Some players are trying to work through injuries.
Safety Justin Glenn is an example of a player coming back off of injury. After a solid start to last season, the sophomore-to-be had started four of five games before breaking his leg at Notre Dame, ending his season. Now he's back and trying to return to the form that saw him earn his starting job.
Quarterback Keith Price, who will be a redshirt freshman in the fall, is one of only three QBs on the roster, alongside senior Jake Locker and true freshman Nick Montana. As he says, he's well aware that he needs to continue to step up his game and continue to learn as he prepares for the 2010 season.
GoHuskies.com caught up with both of these Huskies after practice last week. Here's what they had to say:
GoHuskies.com: How's it feel to have practice started up?
Glenn: I mean it's nice to be out here but I'm not fully back out here [because of injury]. It's limited. Some things I can do, some things I can't. I mean it feels good to be out here and in the swing of things, but it'll be a lot better once I'm 100% and I can fully participate.
GoHuskies.com: After sitting out so much time with injury last season, how does that affect you coming in to this season?
Glenn: Sitting out a lot definitely showed me how I need to elevate my game and get back out here playing, and I know what I need to do. It's a matter of executing and getting my foot right and going to the trainer's day in and day out and getting it right. I think everything will work out come fall camp.
GoHuskies.com: Were there things you could see while you were sitting out last season that you wouldn't normally see if you were playing?
Glenn: Oh yeah, definitely. I mean, when you're playing you learn more because you're experiencing, but when you're sitting out you definitely can take mental notes all the time of things that you see: who keys this, receivers stance and this and that. It helps but I'd rather be out there playing obviously.
GoHuskies.com: It's a pretty young secondary for the most part. How is that coming along?
Glenn: I think it's coming along as a group. We've got one senior, Nate [Williams], and he's kind of our leader, but I think we're all veterans now. It's not like we're all brand new guys. Even guys that were like Will Shamburger and Nate Fellner. I feel like we've all been here long enough that we can carry some weight on our backs.
GoHuskies.com: How's it feel to be out here playing some football?
Price: I'm starting to get the hang of this thing a little bit. I'm just out here having fun, trying to get better.
GoHuskies.com: Talk about how much improvement you've made from last season.
Price: It's going well. Pocket feel, the way I'm throwing the ball. I'm feeling better with my reads. It's just about me getting more confidence, getting out here and letting it fly.
GoHuskies.com: GoHuskies.com: What can you learn playing behind a guy like Jake Locker?
Price: It's a big help. Sometimes I'll come in early and Jake will help me with the playbook. We'll go over basic stuff, stuff that to this day I haven't completely learned -- protections and things like that. It's great. He's always there, very supportive, and he's helped me out a lot.
GoHuskies.com: How are you dealing with the fact that you're now competing for the No. 2 spot, rather than the No. 3 like last year? Is there more pressure?
Price: Oh man there's definitely more pressure. It's forcing me to understand the playbook, study it at night, study before I go to class. You know it's just a different ballgame from redshirting to coming in and being one snap away [from playing], so I'm just preparing like I'm the starter.