August 21, 2011 in Sports

Second squads get better of UW’s No. 1s

Scott M. Johnson Everett Herald
 

Montana
(Full-size photo)

SEATTLE – Throughout the first two weeks of training camp, University of Washington football coach Steve Sarkisian preached that this is the deepest team he’s had at UW, and that depth was on display during Saturday’s intrasquad scrimmage.

Not that it was necessarily a good thing for the 2011 Huskies.

UW’s most complete scrimmage of the fall training camp saw the second teams on both units outplay the first units for most of the afternoon. It left Sarkisian sporting an I-told-you-so grin but also admitting a touch of concern.

“I know we’re better than that,” said Sarkisian, who barked at several players on the field during the ragged session but was strictly positive afterward.

Quarterback Keith Price, who completed 8 of 15 passes for 76 yards and had several of his throws dropped, said the Huskies aren’t quite ready for the Sept. 3 opener against Eastern Washington.

“We’ve still got a long way to go,” said Price, who led three drives against the second-team defense and had just one score to show for it.

Dropped passes were only part of the Huskies’ problem. The running game missed star Chris Polk, who is sitting out the opener following arthroscopic surgery to his left knee, and the UW defense gave up two long drives engineered by backup quarterback Nick Montana.

If there was a breakout performer at the scrimmage, it may well have been Montana. He completed 13 of 24 passes for 135 yards and had the day’s only touchdown pass. In the two drives against the No. 1 defense, he helped lead UW’s second-team offense to eight first downs, a touchdown and a 27-yard field goal while completing 11 of 19 passes for 117 yards.

“I’m still out there competing,” said Montana, who entered the spring battling Price for the starting job but has since been designated as the backup. “It can only get you better, it can only get Keith better, and it can only make the team better.”

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