The Sarkisian Era Begins Optimistically in Washington

Kevin CacabelosSenior Analyst ISeptember 6, 2009

SEATTLE - SEPTEMBER 05:  Head coach Steve Sarkisian of the Washington Huskies leads his team out of the tunnel prior to the game against the LSU Tigers on September 5, 2009 at Husky Stadium in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

Coach Sarkisian did not make excuses after last night's lost, he refused to take out any "moral victories" after the loss. This winning attitude did not necessarily translate into a win, but Husky fans saw a different team. The Washington Huskies are a bowl team. This did not look like a ninth place Pac-10 team.

This team played aggressive.

This team played with confidence.

This team played liked they were expecting to win.

Jake Locker looked more relaxed and confident in the pocket. For once, the Husky offense did not depend on Locker's legs. The Huskies had success in the running game and the receivers made a couple of great plays.

I was frankly surprised by the Huskies' offensive line performance. Chris Polk, Johri Fogerson, Devin Aguilar, and James Johnson all contributed to a balanced offense.

The Husky defense was a lot more aggressive and the talent on the defensive side of the ball was made evident by a lot of third down stops. Do not get me wrong, the defense did have its weak moments. There were times when LSU was running the ball down the Huskies' throat.

The Huskies' main weakness, their secondary, was also exploited on a couple of plays. However, this defense played well above my expectations. The defense kept the game within reach, and that is what matters.

Offensively, the Huskies' run game disappeared in the second half. Locker had a couple of nice plays to keep some of the offensive drives alive. However, the Huskies were not able to execute in the red zone throughout the game. Red zone execution is one thing to watch for in the Idaho game next week.

What happened to D'Andre Goodwin? Last year's best receiver only had two catches for 17 yards. I would have liked to see him more involved. What a performance from Locker, if the Huskies start winning some games, he will start getting some serious national recognition...can I say Heisman?

LSU simply executed better in the second half. Once this Tiger team gets rolling, they're hard to start. This game gives them a lot of momentum moving forward.

Bottom line, this team looks like a team on the rise. Coach Sarkisian has something special brewing in Montlake. Be ready, Husky fans...this year is different. I am excited.

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