Aug. 24, 2004
The topic of the day following Washington's afternoon practice at Husky Stadium Tuesday afternoon was once again the weather. This time the discussion was not about the near 90-degree highs the squad worked through while at Evergreen State College in Olympia. It was just the opposite.
Dark clouds, high winds, chilly conditions and a smattering of rain plagued Washington's afternoon practice.
"I don't think I've ever been this cold in August," said Husky coach Keith Gilbertson. "We went from 90 degree heat in Olympia to this. We couldn't even kick off in that wind. On kickoff return, we just handed the kid the ball."
The winds were strong enough to topple garbage cans used in drills and even managed to overturn one of the manager's large equipment baskets.
"Playing in Washington, you're going to have to be prepared to play in this," Gilbertson noted. "I would prefer the heat."
Gilbertson indicated the team appeared a bit rusty during the mid-point of preseason drills. With new NCAA rules in effect, teams no longer practice twice a day, preparing for the season opener. Every other day is now a once-a-day practice.
"I think this is a lot better for the players," Gilbertson said of the new format. "I know a lot of guys, including myself, would have loved this schedule."
Noting the Huskies
Following the practice Gilbertson spoke to a gathering of several hundred alumni members of the Washington March Band. This season marks the 75th anniversary of the Marching Band at the school. Wednesday the team will attend its annual 101 Club Luncheon before practicing at 3:15. Husky cornerback Jose Okoebor had successful knee surgery Tuesday. He suffered an ACL injury during the first week of practice and will miss the 2004 season. Washington redshirt freshman offensive lineman Erik Berglund is expected to transfer to Portland State. He left the Husky squad during the first week of practice. Tickets remain on sale for the Sept. 5 season opener against Fresno State. Call 206-543-2200 or click on the ticket link at gohuskies.com to order your tickets.