Washington's Clarence Trent decides to concentrate on basketball, studies
Washington had hoped Clarence Trent, a Huskies basketball player, could provide depth at the thin defensive end position. But Trent quit the football team, saying he needed to concentrate on basketball and school.
Seattle Times staff reporter
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The Clarence Trent experiment ended almost as quickly as it began.
Seeking depth at defensive end, the Washington football team had hoped that Trent, who just finished his freshman season with the basketball team, might be able to fill the void.
But after just four practices, Trent decided to stick with his day job, telling coach Steve Sarkisian he was going to concentrate on basketball.
"It just wasn't for him," Sarkisian said after Thursday's practice. "He wanted to focus back on basketball and his school work, and I can respect that."
Sarkisian had eagerly said yes when Trent broached the idea of trying football a few months ago, indicating that Trent would eventually be moved to a football scholarship. But he hadn't played football since his freshman year of high school, and defensive coordinator Nick Holt said, "It's hard to ask a kid that hasn't played in so long (to make that transition). We were hoping it would work out, but hopefully he has a great basketball career."
Washington is sorely lacking depth at defensive end, with Andru Pulu suspended indefinitely after an assault charge and Everrette Thompson (Achilles) and Kalani Aldrich (knee) out for the spring.
Senior De'Shon Matthews, primarily a tackle throughout his UW career, has been playing at end this spring. But he was also out Thursday with an Achilles injury.
That had the Huskies using senior Cameron Elisara at end throughout Thursday's practice. With the team now even more thin at the position, Sarkisian said playing Elisara at end is something UW will continue to explore, though he doesn't anticipate it being a full-time move.
Elisara said he likes end and is willing to play it as much as asked.
"I played a lot of defensive end in high school, and I feel like it might be even a more natural position for me," he said. "I've just got to get back in the routine of playing outside."
Taniela Tupou, a defensive lineman from Archbishop Murphy High, committed to UW, the seventh commit for the Class of 2011.
The 6-foot-3, 265-pounder, who has a four-star rating from Scout.com, also had an offer from Brigham Young and interest from USC, Michigan and Tennessee, said Archbishop Murphy coach Dave Ward.
"He's been thinking about it for a while, and he and his parents decided it would be really good to keep him close, and he liked the visits he'd had up there and the coaches," Ward said.
Bronson on move
In another position experiment, sophomore Demitrius Bronson, a tailback last season, spent about half of his plays working at fullback.
"He's only played one year of college football," said running-backs coach Joel Thomas. "He's still learning a lot of our offense and the little nuances, so we're just trying to find a way to get him rolling and keep him involved in what we are doing."
• NFL Hall of Famer Joe Montana was on hand for the first time this spring to watch son Nick Montana, a freshman quarterback for the Huskies. But Sarkisian said Joe Montana's presence might actually have motivated starting QB Jake Locker. "Jake was pretty good today," Sarkisian said. "I don't know if he missed many throws. He had a heck of a day, probably his best day so far this spring."
• UW will practice Saturday at noon, a change in time from previous listings, and the team is expected to hold its first significant scrimmage of the spring.
Bob Condotta: 206-515-5699 or email@example.com
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