Sam Howard is a work in progress.
There was a lot of progress on Friday morning.
In UW’s second practice for pre-season camp, Huard—a 6-foot-2, 193-pound rookie and ex-five-star recruit—captured the bulk of the starting rep, as UW continues to split first-team shots among the three contenders. quarterback. (Junior Michael Benicks Jr. was the primary starter on Thursday, while sophomore Dylan Morris took choppy start shots on Friday as well.)
Howard made the most blatant mistake of the day, staring at a wide receiver while the Husky Dominic Hampton caught the cover and threw in an easy interception.
Howard did not hesitate to make up for this mistake.
A later play, the lefty took a rifle shot and threw a rainbow along the left sideline for a stunning 56-yard drop to wide receiver Galen McMillan—who had shot past Michael Powell. Howard added two more from a majestic touchdown, to provide a float that wide receiver Roma O’Donnese outflanked cornerstone Jordan Berryman for another 56-yard points, before revealing a slightly tricky byproduct in play to locate Jabez Tinae’s wide 70-yard grab-and-run .
Altogether, this was probably Huard’s most complete training performance since his arrival in the UW – and a necessary rush to keep him in pursuit alongside Penix and Morris. UW coach Kalen DeBoer said Thursday that the three quarterbacks will receive at least equal representatives through the team’s first scrimmage on August 13.
Ultimately, the midfielder who cuts fouls best may start on September 3 against Kent State. Howard certainly didn’t let any such foul drown out his first-team chance on Friday morning.
Strong Offers for ZTF and Fabiculanan
Junior flashed the edge of Zion Tupuola-Fetui on Friday, scoring a Penix sack as he skipped clean from right start Roger Rosengarten in a separate play.
While Bralen Trice and Jeremiah Martin once again took most of the first-team reps over the edge, ZTF also took some shots with the starters in place of Trice. Through April and into August, top coach Eric Schmidt featured Trice and Martin as the supposed starters – although both DeBoer and Joint Defense Coordinator Chuck Morrell name Trice and Martin and Topola Fitoy among the top playmakers in that position. Staff generally seem to regard Martin as a bodily, consistent seal and ZTF as an elite passerby, while Trice might offer the more complete combination of the two.
Regardless of who starts, expect these three to play hard this September — with sophomore Savile Smalls and new doctor Maurice Hymes ditching the remaining cast.
As for the Husky nickel-back hybrid spot, Hampton is still the supposed initiator — but Camryn Fabikulanan impressed on Friday, too. A sophomore from Camarillo, California, jumped an outside route to intercept Penix and later added a sack and jump pass that broke apart against narrow end Quentin Moore.
The 6-1, 191-pound Husky has repeatedly demonstrated important ball skills. He will need to show he can stop running to close the gap with Hampton.
- Redshirt’s freshman corner freshman Davon Banks intercepted for the second practice in a row, ensuring an easy pick after rookie wide receiver Denzel Boston fell in a one-on-one workout. Having surprised the coaching staff with his game last spring, it will be interesting to see if Banks can push Powell or Berryman for a corner kick this fall.
- Virginia’s move back Wayne Taolababa was the primary initiator for a second straight practice, while Will Nixon and Cameron Davis worked with the second team.
- Linebacker Cam Bright bagged a sack in Friday’s game, while linebacker Chris Mull and linebacker Elijah Jackson also bagged the sack.
- UW is trying out a range of tandem safety systems — with Asa Turner, Cameron Williams and Alex Cook alternating with the starters on Friday. Julius Irvine and Vince Nonley also worked with the second team. Cook played the day from this position, curling up in a block to blast a pass from the screen to the tight end of Devin Culp… before flexing in Culp’s face for a good measure.
- Junior defensive back Tully Letoligasinwa scared his way into the backcourt to rule Taolapaba in a losing bid, receiving a celebratory boost from Joint Defense Coordinator William Ng.
- New Redsheet running back Sam Adams II made a memorable play on Friday, taking a swing pass from Howard for a long gain after linebacker Carson Bruner tried to intercept the dive but missed the ball instead.
- Penix wasn’t quite as sharp on Friday as it was the day before, but Indiana’s move dropped in a perfect pass down the seam to Culp for big gains in a 7-on-7 workout.
- Ryan Otton walked out of training on Friday with a possible injury.