BY Art Thiel 06:21PM 08/30/2015

Starting QB for Huskies opener? It’s a secret

Coach Chris Petersen knows, but will not tell, who his starting quarterback is for Friday’s season opener at Boise State. In the absence of experienced talent, mystery will have to do.

Jeff Lindquist is the Huskies’ only starting QB candidate who’s thrown a Pac-12 pass. / Drew McKenzie, Sportspress Northwest

As a small indication of the Huskies’ urgency for any edge in their opener Friday against a ranked team on the road, Washington coach Chris Petersen wouldn’t divulge Sunday the winner of the three-way fight for the starting quarterback job. The purple public must await until kickoff at 7:15 p.m Friday (ESPN national) against 23rd-ranked Boise State.

Think of it like the secrets of Christmas, although that has to include the option of receiving a lump of coal.

“We really don’t think it’s an advantage for us to tell you our strategy right now on that position,” Petersen said Sunday. “We just think at this point it’s kind of the best for our program to move forward for these handful of days with less distractions. We think it will create a little less distractions.”

A solid case can be made that not naming a QB will cause more distractions. But Petersen would prefer to believe that the Broncos coach staff and players will be torqued with anxiety about the unknown.

“We would like rumor and speculation,” he said, smiling as he threw a belt-high fastball in the media wheelhouse. “As much as you can do for that, that will help us.”

Petersen is figuring that in his return to the place of his greatest coaching glory, where his new team will be a 10-point underdog, any sleight of hand, head fake or deception that can prove an edge on one play is worth something.

It probably helps him to know he has three distinct quarterback styles from which to choose. Junior Jeff Lindquist is a bruising 245-pounder who isn’t a very accurate thrower, meaning the option game may suit him best. Freshman Jake Browning is the best passer and not much of a run threat. Redshirt freshman K.J. Carta-Samuels probably is the best combination, but he may not have highest ceiling.

Which suggests that Petersen has been tipping his hand all along when he said he may use the whole flotilla.

“Two quarterbacks – three could be used,” he said. “We’ve been looking at this, obviously, since spring, analyzed every rep. We think we’ve got a good plan going into this. I think we all feel good about it.”

Including Browning in the mix will be a first in his coaching career. Not in his 13 years at Boise State and one at Washington has he started a freshman.

“I don’t think it really matters if it’s a true freshman or not,” he said. “Maybe we haven’t had a guy that was ready to go. There’s a lot of true freshmen that play.”

The bigger worry may be the inexperience in front of the QB. With the injury retirement of the most experienced returning lineman, Dexter Charles, the Huskies’ offensive line is hurting for the wisdom of elders.

According to the two-deep rosters, sophomore Coleman Shelton will start at left tackle (seven starts at right tackle in 2014), junior Jake Eldrenkamp at left guard (14 games on special teams), senior Siosifa Tufunga (five starts at left guard) and junior Shane Brostek (redshirt 2014, five games in 2013). Right tackle will be between two redshirt freshmen, Kaleb McGary or Matt James.

Their collective baptismal will be upon the fake blue sod of Albertsons Stadium that has never had the honor and privilege of hosting the regal warriors from the Northwest’s premier city.

“I think when a game is billed as the biggest game in school history, I don’t think you have to do a lot of describing,” Petersen said. “I think using those words just take care of it. It’s a great place to play. Unbelievable home-field advantage. The size of the stadium (36,387) has nothing to do with it.

“Those are very passionate fans and a really good place to play a college football game. Noise is a factor. Tough place to play.”

Petersen can only hope the place is susceptible to mystery and intrigue.

Team selects six captains

The Huskies voted six players as captains: Lindquist, C Siosifa Tufunga, WR Jaydon Mickens, RB Deontae Cooper, LB Travis Feeney and DT Tani Tupou. All are seniors except Lindquist and Cooper.

“It was awesome to see because I think those guys picked guys that we really think should be team captains and have done a great job since winter conditioning,” Petersen said. “It was very clear cut that these six guys jumped out.”


  • 1coolguy

    Last year was the worst ever for QB play on the Huskies and I place that on the coaching. We had the talent. I suggest if this year isn’t much improved that Chris go onto the market and pick up the next Doug Nussmeier. The present OC seems to be indecisive and not a good teacher.

    • Effzee

      We had the talent? Really? At QB? Last year? You talkin’ about ol’ Rubberarm “Early Retirement” McBrainiac?

      • art thiel

        I’d go easy on Miles. He did a really dumb thing with party fight, but he was also thrust into a no-win situation on the team. Some of it was his own doing, some was the cruel machine of college football.

    • dianajfeliz

      WORKAT HOME SPECIAL REPORT………After earning an average of 19952 Dollars monthly,I’m finally getting 98 Dollars an hour,just working 4-5 hours daily online….It’s time to take some action and you can join it too.It is simple,dedicated and easy way to get rich.Three weeks from now you will wishyou have started today – I promise!….HERE I STARTED-TAKE A LOOK AT….yi..

      ➤➤➤➤ http://googleteambuzznetplanedworkzone/start/earning/…. ⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛

    • art thiel

      I don’t think Miles had what it took emotionally to be a top-half Pac-12 QB. And I don’t think the staff was quite ready for the level of play at P12. But good of you to give Smith two years on the job.

      • 1coolguy

        Art – Lindquist, Carta-Samuels, Williams and Miles were ALL highly rated and highly recruited out of HS. I do not believe a Nussmeier-quality OC would have failed with ALL FOUR and left the program with the debacle we witnessed last year. Do you really think a solid, experienced OC would have failed to this degree Art?
        As a ticket holder since the Sixkiller days, you have to agree this was the nadir of Husky QB years.

        • art thiel

          What I saw of Lindquist and Miles was not terrible, but not top-half P12. Didn’t see C-S. and not enough of Williams.

    • Pixdawg13

      Nope. It wasn’t the worst. Your memory has been kind to you and erased Corey Paus & company.

      • art thiel

        Agree with Pixdawg. The Cody Pickett years were big numbers but not great QB play.

  • Glenn Mitchell

    Good gawd Coach Pete.
    Enough already. Leave the secrecy
    to the military. This is football CP,
    not war. Unless you are building a bomb
    in the basement of the power plant across Husky Stadium to take down Moscow
    (Idaho) or are amassing an air, ground and naval arsenal to invade Ephrata,
    just name your starting quarterback.

    In the big picture (and little picture and all sized pictures
    in-between), does it really matter who starts, and plays, at QB Friday night? Do you really think the Boise State players,
    coaches, alumni, students, fans, team managers, cheerleaders (both male and
    female), band members, ticket takers and locker room towel boys are shaking in
    their collective boots in fear and wonderment as to whom the BSU defense may
    face come Friday night?

    Considering BSU lost just one player from last season’s DL
    that ranked 7th nationally in both tackles-for-loss and sacks, and
    considering the Bronco DL returns two starters who each had double-digit sacks
    last season, and considering the BSU DL rotation this season will included six
    seniors, something tells me the only thing they are shaking is the clock so it
    can magically jump ahead to Friday night so they can get after the nameless
    faceless quarterback for Coach Pete and The Washington Huskies.

    Fear? Confusion? Paranoia?
    Those three words certainly are not coming out of Boise in regard to who
    takes the first, third, twenty-third and thirty-third snaps under center for UW
    Friday. No, those words would seem to me
    to be pointing square at you CP as you apparently grapple for any advantage you
    can get.

    Something tells me if you ask the BSU coaching staff and
    defenders who they would prefer to see start at QB against them Friday night I
    am sure one and all would confidently say ‘We don’t care if they start Aaron
    Rogers, Jake Browning, Wolverine from The X-Men, Jeff Lindquist or Napoleon
    Bonaparte we are going to come after them regardless.’ And why not, the UW offensive line has enough
    concerns that would make Alexander The Great squiggle in his britches if he
    were their coach.

    Coach Pete, I have drank the kool-aid and support you all
    the way and I do believe you have the potential to be the best coach and take
    this program to places it has not seen since the great Don James. But several strange and unexplainable calls
    last season and now this resistance to name your quarterback for Friday make me
    squirm just a bit.

    Grow a pair and name your QB. You want to make a pre-game statement? Show the world (that would include BSU) that
    you have complete confidence in your QB’s (note the plural) and the rest of
    your offense and name the starter with pride.
    Tell BSU who will start and who will play and dare them to stop
    you. The other 127 FBS teams don’t seem
    to have a problem with doing that this week.

    • jafabian

      I don’t think it makes a difference if he names one now or if we don’t find out until game day. The only purpose would be to appease Husky Nation. If the media sees one particular QB taking the most snaps or working with the first unit it will most likely be that player. Most likely the competition is even right now and whomever steps it up in the next few days will be the one.

      • art thiel

        Media doesn’t get to see in-season practices. I don’t care enough tyo bribe a team manager.

    • Pixdawg13

      What a silly rant.

      • art thiel

        Glenn enjoys clearing his throat.

    • art thiel

      It does seem a trifle insecure.

  • rosetta_stoned

    It’s going to be a long, long season.

    • GOOGLE jobs $97/h work

      JOB AT HOME SPECIAL REPORT………After earning an average of 19952 Dollars monthly,I’m finally getting 98 Dollars an hour,just working 4-5 hours daily online….It’s time to take some action and you can join it too.It is simple,dedicated and easy way to get rich.Three weeks from now you will wishyou have started today – I promise!….HERE I STARTED-TAKE A LOOK AT…..fgt..

      ➤➤➤➤ http://googledailyjobsinternationalnetwork/start/earning/…. ⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛⚛.

    • art thiel

      But think of all the studying that will get done by the student-athletes who won’t be annoyed by bowl practices.

  • jafabian

    IMO, Troy Williams would be the starting QB if he stuck around but he’d be on a short leash. At this point it’s most likely Lindquist who will be the starter.

    • art thiel

      Not sure about Williams, but he obviously liked his chances elsewhere.