SEATTLE — Washington preseason All-America tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins was not at practice Thursday because he had surgery on his broken right pinkie.
Coach Steve Sarkisian said he didn’t yet know a timeline for Seferian-Jenkins’ recovery.
Seferian-Jenkins broke his pinkie during practice Monday. Sarkisian initially thought it was of little concern before learning that Seferian-Jenkins would need surgery.
With Seferian-Jenkins unavailable, Washington again used redshirt sophomore Josh Perkins, a converted receiver, as its No. 1 tight end. Redshirt junior Michael Hartvigson also received a lot of
“I think Josh has had a really good training camp,” Sarkisian said. “He’s blocking. He’s route-running. He’s being physical when he’s asked to be. He’s a nice element. He’s a tough matchup on linebackers.”
Washington had moved Evan Hudson from tight end to the defensive line over the summer. Sarkisian said Hudson would remain with the defense despite Seferian-Jenkins’ injury.
LITTLETON MAKES A MOVE
Cory Littleton was tearing up his scout team duties last year so much that the Huskies decided to move him from scout team to starter. At Autzen Stadium.
Littleton knew he would be a special teams starter and that he was part of a particular defensive package for the Oregon game. After covering the opening kickoff, Littleton’s package was called, sending him into the middle of roaring Autzen Stadium as a starting linebacker against one of the fastest and highest-scoring teams in the country.
“It was fun,” Littleton said. “I enjoyed it all. It was a good experience. I feel like I did OK, and this year I expect to do better.”
He has been moved to rush end this season, working in Washington’s odd-man fronts, where he has been playing with the No. 1 defense. Though he was carted off Wednesday, Littleton will be fine. He could have played Thursday had there been a game.
In high school, the 6-foot-3, 230-pound Littleton was a defensive end. Playing linebacker last season taught him a lot about dropping into coverage. This year, he’s in a versatile spot as part of the hybrid defenses Washington often runs.
“He can be a stand-up outside backer but can also rush the passer,” Sarkisian said. “He continues to do that type of stuff for us now. I think he’s going to have a big role for us on special teams and a role for us on defense.”
Freshman defensive end Joe Mathis continues to get reps with the No. 1 defense. … Freshman wide receiver John Ross had a light day Thursday, but Sarkisian referenced a cut Ross made during Tuesday’s scrimmage when returning a punt at full speed, saying it “was reminiscent of an old No. 5 I used to coach.” That would be former USC star Reggie Bush. … Washington could end up dividing field-goal kicking duties between Travis Coons and Cameron Van Winkle. Coons is effective from about 38 yards and in. Van Winkle has been more effective on long firstname.lastname@example.org @Todd_Dybas blog.thenewstribune.com/uwsports