Aug. 17, 2009
SEATTLE - Husky fans were treated to one of the university's anticipated fall events on Sunday when the fall sports teams held their picture day. Fans had the opportunity to go onto the new field at Husky Stadium, take pictures with players from the football, soccer and volleyball teams and get their favorite Husky athletes to sign autographs.
The event appeared to be fan-centered, but the smiles and excitement from the athletes, even when they weren't posing for a picture, showed that the enjoyment was mutual.
"Picture day is crazy," said senior offensive lineman Morgan Rosoborough. "You have these people that you've never met before, but they just know so much about you. It just shows you how true and loyal the fans are and how Husky Nation is behind you wherever you go."
Said sophomore wide receiver Cody Bruns: "[Picture day] is all about just giving back to the fans. We get all sorts of people out here and it's nice just to give back to them."
For some athletes, picture day is an opportunity to be on the other side of the table from their childhood, when they came to picture day hoping to see their favorite Husky. Fred Wiggs, a longtime Husky fan and younger brother of former Husky Sekou Wiggs, understands both sides of the event and values the opportunity.
"I just feel so amazed by being with all the players taking the pictures and giving the autographs," said Wiggs, who now plays linebacker for the Huskies. "It's important for me especially because I know what it means to people and to the community from being on the other side of it. Just seeing what you can do for fans just by signing an autograph, smiling and waving."
Picture day offered the opportunity to get to know Husky athletes that will be representing the university in the fall. For athletes, the chance to show appreciation for the fans that give their unending support is not taken for granted as they spent an hour and a half on Sunday running across the field for pictures, as well as sitting at tables as long lines formed for their autograph.
The Huskies now head back to fall camp, where tough two-a-days dot their schedule leading up to their opening game against LSU on Sept. 5.
"There's a lot of excitement with the fans," said Bruns. "People say, `get those Tigers,' so it's time to buckle down and get ready."
It wasn't just football players, however, as the Husky women's soccer and volleyball teams were also on hand.
"It's really exciting to have everyone come out and support us, especially the little kids," said junior soccer player Kendyl Pele. "It encourages us to play better."
POST-PRACTICE UPDATE (Monday morning): After a day off from practice on Sunday, the Huskies underwent their first of two practices Monday morning on a sunny day at Husky Stadium.
It was a helmets-only workout ahead of a full-pads session this evening.
Much of the morning practice's team period focused on two-minute drill. Perhaps the most spectacular play of the morning was a 40- or 50-yard pass from freshman Keith Price to receiver Anthony Boyles, who came down with the ball in traffic just shy of the goal line.
On the news front, Coach Steve Sarkisian addressed the fact that senior linebacker E.J. Savannah is wearing a cast on his left hand. Sarkisian reported that there's a broken bone, but did not term the injury as serious and noted that Savannah wasn't held out of any action.
Next up is tonight's full-pads workout, beginning at 6:45 p.m. Tomorrow, the Dawgs will scrimmage during practice, which begins at 3:00 p.m.
POST-PRACTICE UPDATE (Monday evening): The team went through a spirited two-and-a-half hour practice in Husky Stadium on a cool 75 degree evening in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. The team worked on nearly every aspect of the game, including extensive sessions of special teams and various types of scrimmage situations.
A couple of practice highlights included defensive back Greg Walker's interception and attempted return for a score. As he rounded the left side of the line, Johri Fogerson channeled his inner-defensive back and laid a solid hit to Walker for the crowd-pleasing tackle. A few minutes later, Devin Aguilar, who has had several solid practices, turned-in an 80-yard TD reception.
A couple of, hopefully, minor injuries occured with Jason Wells suffering an injury to his right achilles and Victor Aiyewa taking a hit that left him woozy for the last portion of the practice session. Both players, according to Sarkisian, will be evaluated further and an update should be provided on Tuesday.