Aug. 20, 2010
Updated to include a practice report from the evening workout.
SEATTLE - The Huskies capped their fourth two-a-day workout of Fall Camp by following a similar script to the morning's routine - a heavy emphasis on special teams. There was also plenty of reps doled out to the first-string unit, who will kick off the team's final scrimmage of preseason Saturday afternoon.
Perhaps the highlight of the evening portion was placekicker Erik Folk's outstanding performance during drills. The junior, who earlier in the day was named to the Groza Award Watch List, netted all five attempts, including a 58-yarder that drew a loud ovation from his teammates. Receiver Justin Polk also had a solid practice, hooking up with quarterback Keith Price on multiple receptions to move the Huskies down the field.
Before moving to 11-on-11 drills, the Huskies held several up-tempo drills, moving from one station to another and working on skill development. The competition aspect of the preseason picked up during some 1-on-1 sessions, particularly with the receivers and the defensive backs.
During the morning practice, Coach Steve Sarkisian reminded the media that two weeks from today the team will be on a plane headed to Provo, Utah. In case any forgot, the 2010 season is rapidly approaching and that means game preparations have already begun for the BYU game, although Sarkisian jokingly said he has yet to let his team in on the notion.
It was helmets-only during the brief first workout (which lasted about an hour), and there was a heavy emphasis on special team's situations. Sarkisian especially liked the work from his punter, Will Mahan, who has been consistently booming the ball during practice.
"He's just crushing the ball," Sarkisian said. "...Not only is he really good (kicking) directionally, but he's really hammering it."
The Huskies will hold another practice tonight at 6:45 p.m. On Saturday, the team has scheduled its final scrimmage of Fall Camp. Sarkisian noted, however, that since the practices are typically physical and difficult, there will still be plenty of evaluations to make next week as well.
"I like where we're at," Sarkisian said. "...I've been impressed with our football team, the way they've practiced and responded. I think offensively and defensively we're light years ahead of where we were last year at this time." Some highlights from the morning workout was the blocked punt from linebacker Garret Gilliland during special team drills and the long catch-and-run touchdown made by tailback Chris Polk.
Johri Fogerson Q&A
His role at Washington is starting to show definition. When Fogerson enrolled at the UW, he came as a highly touted prep prospect out of O'Dea High School in Seattle, and originally started out as a safety in 2008. When Sarkisian took over the program in 2009, he switched Fogerson to his more natural position of tailback. Fogerson is a versatile threat out of the backfield, and is an excellent pass-catching option. An added bonus to his junior season this year is that Fogerson has the chance to play with his brother Zach, who is a freshman fullback. Recently, GoHuskies.com correspondent Eddie Baker caught up with Fogerson and discussed the upcoming season and the sibling rivalry playing out on Montlake.
GoHuskies.com: With your mom being a UW alumnus and growing up so close, did you always hope to play football at UW?
Fogerson: I did, growing up watching Corey Dillon and all those guys play, it really inspired me to come here--whether it is for football, basketball, or any sport.
GH.com: Coming into this year's fall camp, what did you work on in the offseason, and how have you improved since last year?
Fogerson: I worked on my speed, my power, my catching, just my basic running back fundamentals, and I really got a lot better at everything I worked on. So my goals were really reached.
GH.com: How do the running backs this year compare to the group of running backs in the past?
Fogerson: Honestly it's a whole different running style. I picture myself as an all-around back--catch the ball, run the ball, block, do my job. So that's basically what I do.
GH.com: As a versatile and very skilled player, where do you see yourself fitting into the offense?
Fogerson: Wherever the coaches need me honestly. I can catch the ball so if they want me to line up at receiver, I'll line up at receiver. If they want me to be in the backfield, I'll be in the backfield taking carries. If they want me to block, I'll block. That's basically what I do; I do whatever they ask.
GH.com: Is it hard to make the transition from one position to another?
Fogerson: No its not. I had fun at defense but I love offense, so when I have the ball in my hands I feel really at home.
GH.com: You played safety your freshman year, could you ever see yourself as a defensive back again before you graduate?
Fogerson: No, I'm on offense to stay.
GH.com: What's it like playing with your little brother?
Fogerson: It has been really fun. It's just like high school, old times. He's out here having fun, I'm out here having fun so everything's going well, and it's my little brother.
GH.com: Do you have any personal goals, and what are your goals for the team?
Fogerson: Go out, play hard, try to win every game. It's not impossible, but is possible to go out there and lose-- as we all saw if you don't finish. So that's our goal this year, to finish, and we have to do that. That's the goal.
GH.com: What are you majoring in, and do you have any aspirations of continuing that focus later in life?
Fogerson: Right now, sociology, and I really want to get into sports management. So I have to take some business-type classes, searching those out, which ones to take, which ones not to take. So right now I'm sitting low key, trying to figure it out.