Aug. 5, 2008
SEATTLE - Day two of the 2008 Husky football fall camp season was a little more run of the mill than day one as the team settled into more of what will become a routine over the next few weeks.
Tuesday, Aug. 5 Press Conference
Whereas Monday's day one featured more in terms of equipment issue and orientations and first times around for the Dawgs, Tuesday was devoted to a morning lift and meetings and the team was slated to undergo its second practice at sunny Husky Stadium Tuesday afternoon.
Coach Tyrone Willingham reflected on the first day's work and was happy with what he saw.
"Yesterday was a good start for us," said the fourth-year head man. "A lot of good things took place.
"I enjoyed what we did yesterday. I thought our seniors did a good job of leading and our freshmen did a good job of picking things up."
Willingham also noted that the team did well overall in its conditioning test and, with a full practice afterward, he was pleased that his team fought through what might have been a tiring afternoon without showing any fatigue.
Wednesday's schedule will feature the first of several split-squad practices in the afternoon, as the team will be split into two groups to allow for more personalized instruction.
GoHuskies.com talked with a pair of Huskies at Monday's press luncheon. First, a brief interview with RS-sophomore wideout D'Andre Goodwin, followed by a quick Q&A with sophomore safety Nate Williams:
Last year you didn't get a whole lot of playing time, so what's it like coming into this year as one of the top guys at wide receiver? What are you doing to prepare?
"I'm doing the same thing I've been doing--working hard in the off-season, getting stronger in the weight room, trying to get that special chemistry that Jake [Locker] and I have built over the last three years we've been together. So I'm treating it the same."
Can you talk a little more about that chemistry? Are things clicking better with you and Jake?
"Yeah, I feel like it is. We started off doing scout team together so it's not like we haven't done this before. We spent a lot of time together this summer throwing the ball around, running routes, and working on timing."
You had a pretty good spring game (7 catches, 109 yards, TD). How have you built off that this summer and coming into the fall?
"I treat everything the same. I know I had a pretty good game but there are things that you guys probably didn't catch that I noticed or the coaches noticed that I need to fix. So I've been working on all the small things and getting the technique down--everything that Coach [Charlie] Baggett is teaching me to do I'm trying to perfect that."
What incoming guys on offense are you looking forward to playing with and seeing hit the field?
"I'm looking forward to playing with all of them. They're all special players. This summer they came to show what they can do right away. I'm excited to see them play."
Here's what Williams had to say:
What are your first thoughts heading into camp?
"We're really excited about what we have coming out of the spring, we're really excited about the energy we're bringing into camp. We're excited to just strap it up and start banging some heads."
You were a freshman last year, so what's the biggest difference being a returning player?
"Basically you just know what to expect. Last year was really rough for some of the freshman that played. It was tough because we didn't know what to expect--how much time it was going to take, how much time and training there was going to be and everything. Now we know what to expect. We know how practices are and how the coaches come after you and everything. Plus we don't get bossed around by the older guys as much [laughs]."
Speaking of freshmen, you guys have a great recruiting class coming into camp this year. What player or players are you most excited about playing with?
"[Fellow Kennedy High grad] Everrette Thompson, of course. I played little league with him, we went to the same high school, and now we're at the same college. I definitely hope he'll get a little bit of playing time this year, but if not then we have a couple more years. He's big and getting bigger. You know, he's a hard worker and if he keeps his head on straight, keeps working hard, and keep on doing what he's doing then I think his chances of playing are pretty good."
Did you do anything special this off-season to prepare or was it just training as usual?
"Just training as usual. I really worked on my strength this year overall. Last year, I feel that the freshman that played--we all had the natural ability to play, but a lot of us, including myself, weren't as strong as we should have been to take on the big hits from the tight ends and make big stops on running backs. That's mainly what I worked on this year."
One of the more intriguing players coming into this year is former minor league baseball player Tripper Johnson, what's it been like playing with him in the secondary?
"He looks pretty good, at first he was really shy and timid out there and didn't really want to hit, but that's just natural being new to everything. Now after having spring ball under his belt he's taken big steps forward. He's more comfortable out there, he's more comfortable around us--talking, running around hitting and everything so we really feel he's going to help us out this year."