Even while injured, Kelemete leads

UW Football: Senior tests foot problem by spending time on the practice field

April 27, 2011 

Senio Kelemete probably could have hobbled around in the protective boot on his right foot for the final week of spring practice.

He’s a senior. The Washington football staff knows what he can do at left tackle.

But Kelemete was on the field Tuesday for the first time in three weeks, testing out his recovery from the plantar fascia problem that had him sidelined.

“Still a little sore,” he said. “I just wanted to come out today and feel where I am with it. Obviously, I’ve progressed a lot faster than they thought I would. The trainers have been doing a really good job of rehabbing it and working on me.”

The most experienced player on a young Husky offensive line had been bothered by foot troubles, and the training staff was glad three weeks ago when he “popped” the fascia. As it was explained, the structure needs to go through that painful process before it can start to fully heal.

“He looked good today,” coach Steve Sarkisian said. “I was pleasantly surprised. I don’t anticipate him playing Saturday (in the Spring Game). We kind of don’t need him to.”

But Sarkisian appreciated that Kelemete was back out there.

“From a leadership standpoint, a lot of those guys look up to him,” Sarkisian said. “He’s played a lot of football and he’s got a great presence about him, so it was good to have him out there.”

 • Sarkisian was asked one last time about the prospects of former Husky quarterback Jake Locker heading into Thursday’s NFL draft.

“These are the longest days of his life this week,” Sarkisian said. “He’s such a great kid, such a great person, it’s all going to work out regardless what happens. But I am hopeful he gets to go to a place that allows him to grow as a player and gives him a chance for longevity in that league because he deserves it.”

 • After having watched the video of Saturday’s scrimmage, Sarkisian was a little surprised that his young team made so few mistakes.

“I thought we played sound football, good football,” he said. “We tackled pretty well and guys made plays when they had the opportunity. All in all, it was a good, physical scrimmage, which is what we wanted.”

 • Sarkisian said he had been concerned whether limited manpower at some positions would make it difficult to conduct Saturday’s Spring Game (11 a.m. at Husky Stadium).

“We have a few guys who will have to swing back and forth, but I want to give our fans an opportunity to watch a game,” he said.

The final spring workout before the game has been moved from Thursday to Friday at 4 p.m.

 • A national news outlet reported that Sarkisian had called Seahawks coach Pete Carroll for advice on how to make the announcement when he decided which young quarterback – sophomore Keith Price or redshirt freshman Nick Montana – would be named the team’s starter.

Sarkisian said that didn’t mean that he had arrived at the decision, only that he asked Carroll for suggestions on how to go about it.

“I have great respect for Pete,” said Sarkisian, formerly Carroll’s assistant at USC. “He’s a tremendous mentor to me; it’s not the first time I’ve called him, believe me.”

 • Linebacker Cort Denison “banged his head,” Sarkisian said. He was kept out of drills in the latter part of practice as a precaution.

Dave Boling 253-597-8440 dave.boling@thenewstribune.com

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