It's Trew: Surprise start for UW senior
Kyle Trew never figured he'd have to wait five years to get his first start for the Huskies. And once it came, he only had about five minutes...
Seattle Times staff reporters
Kyle Trew never figured he'd have to wait five years to get his first start for the Huskies.
And once it came, he only had about five minutes to prepare.
The fifth-year senior from Edmonds-Woodway High School, who had made only two tackles in his career, was forced to start Saturday in UW's 33-14 loss to Ohio State when starting outside linebacker Dan Howell was unable to play after injuring his knee last week.
Howell had said earlier in the week he would be fine and expected to play, but Trew spent the week practicing with the first team just in case. As game time neared Saturday, coaches decided to hold out Howell.
"We didn't think he was full go, so we didn't put him in," Willingham said.
Trew got the start instead.
"I pretty much knew right before the game," he said. "It was my first start as a Husky and I was excited. My nerves just kept going. I was jacked up — I can't lie about it."
Trew stopped Ohio State running back Chris Wells for a 2-yard loss on a third-down play. He finished with three tackles for the game, his first since making two in 2004.
"I just tried to stay strong and keep doing what I did every day and believing I would get my chance," said Trew. "I finally got it, so I was happy and excited."
Buckeyes blow up
As the penalties piled up, and drive after drive stalled for Ohio State during the first half, the Buckeyes' usually reserved quarterback reached a point where he couldn't take it anymore. That's when Todd Boeckman exploded at his teammates.
"I was really surprised," said running back Chris Wells. "I've never seen Todd demand so much and take that much charge."
Generally the senior quarterback shares time with his junior backup, Robby Schoenhoft, but not Saturday. Boeckman completed 14 of 25 passes for 218 yards and two touchdowns. And in his first ever road start, he also "lit a fire in those guys," despite not "being a guy who speaks out that much."
Ohio State run down
The Buckeyes pounded their running backs as promised against the Huskies. Sophomore Chris Wells rushed for 135 yards on 24 carries. Brandon Saine, the freshman sensation, racked up 83 yards on nine attempts.
Saine scored as time ran out on a simple off-tackle play, where he cut left and outran everyone up the sideline. Coach Jim Tressel emphasized that the Buckeyes had not intended to run up the score.
"I thought we'd get 2 yards and call it a day," Tressel said of Saine. "He's got great speed."
The Huskies had to dip into their reserves for a kick returner when regular Brandon Johnson suffered bruised ribs in practice Thursday. Freshman Curtis Shaw stepped in, and after going 35 yards with his first return to start the second half, he had a critical fumble that led to an Ohio State touchdown.
"I ran into the back of one of my own players, and the ball just slipped out," Shaw said. "It was just one of those unfortunate mistakes that probably won't happen again."
The Huskies then tried Louis Rankin, and he had three returns, including a 41-yarder. But Willingham said the job would go back to Johnson when he's healthy.
• Huskies kicker Ryan Perkins had a field goal blocked for the second straight week. But Willingham said the problem this week was up front. "We didn't do a good job of protection," he said.
• Huskies offensive coordinator Tim Lappano said that QB Jake Locker had never seen a defense as fast as Ohio State's. "Boise State's a good football team, but the speed of the game [against Ohio State] was nothing like he's ever seen," Lappano said.
• Rankin came out of the game briefly when some particles from the FieldTurf got into his eye. But he said his ankle, a problem a week ago, was fine.
• Boeckman connected with WR Brian Robiskie for a 68-yard touchdown pass — the longest throw of his career, and the longest catch of Robiskie's.
• Tressel won his 200th game on Saturday, improving his career record to 200-71-2 and his record at Ohio State to 65-14. Tressel said the milestone reminded him that "I'm getting up in years," adding that he's more interested in win No. 201. He celebrated with a large contingent of fans, all wearing red and spread throughout the stadium, after the game finished.
"Well, they [the players] poured all that cold stuff on me," he said. "Whatever it was. I don't know if it was water or Gatorade or what. Muscle milk? I don't know what it was exactly, but it was cold."
• Tressel, on UW quarterback Jake Locker: "Oh, man, he's excellent. The sky's the limit."
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