The Washington Huskies are back to respectability. Back to back bowl appearances and 7-6 seasons makes them improved from where they were, but when will they take the next step? Is Steve Sarkisian the guy to get them there? He’s definitely done alright so far, but this team team is still a far cry from Stanford or Oregon in the Pac 12 North. Especially with that porous defense.
But they have one thing going for them that the pro team in Seattle does not- resolution at the quarterback position. While the Seahawks will have to figure it out between Russell Wilson, Tarvaris Jackson and Matt Flynn, the Huskies have Keith Price, one of the best in the nation.
2011 was:a tale of two seasons- offense and defense: they could score with anyone. Trouble was they gave up yards and points to anyone as well. A perfect microcosm was that wild 67-56 bowl loss to Baylor and Heisman winner RG3. They played too many games with basketball like scores last year, and might find themselves in many similar situations this year.
2012 will go smoothly if; They got to improve that pass defense, it was 116th in the nation last year. With any augmentation, they’ll win minimum 8 games this year. There’s a good amount of NFL talent on this team, especially Trufant which should be a first rounder.
2012 will be rough if: This team has some issues on defense, as you might have heard. And they need to replace RB Chris Polk, one of the best in school history. The OL lacks depth, and it may take awhile for the changes in defensive coaching staff and scheme to take hold. Also, the DL leaves something to be desired, especially when trying to generate a consistent pass rush against all those pass-heavy offenses in the league.
BMOC: Price, CB Desmond Trufant, WR Kasen Williams, TE Austin Sefarian-Jenkins
All-name team: FB Dezden Petty, ILB Princeton Fuimaono, FS Shaquille Thompson
Bottom Line: They should be better than .500 as 7-8 wins certainly looks likely. New assistants on D should help them with the kind of scheme they run. However, their secondary should be better, and not as atrocious as last year. They will get stronger from practicing everyday versus the league’s second or third best passing game.
Rankings Athlon- 25 Lindy’s- 32 Phil Steele- 51
All the 77s
#40 Penn State
#45 Mississippi State
#67 Southern Miss
Paul M. Banks is CEO of The Sports Bank.net, an official Google News site generating millions of unique visitors. He’s also a regular contributor to Chicago Now, Chicago Tribune.com, Fox Sports, MSN, Walter Football and Yardbarker
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