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Originally published August 25, 2012 at 8:06 PM | Page modified August 25, 2012 at 8:27 PM

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Five keys to the Washington Huskies' football season

No player is more valuable to Washington than junior quarterback Keith Price, who threw for a school-record 33 touchdowns last season. He did that despite...

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Boy Sankey looks great in that photo. A lot of people forget he was a huge recruit... MORE
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Keep Price upright

No player is more valuable to Washington than junior quarterback Keith Price, who threw for a school-record 33 touchdowns last season. He did that despite nagging knee and ankle injuries, though he started all but one game. The Huskies need to keep him healthier this season if it wants to take the next step.

Get defensive

Washington allowed a school-record 467 points last season, leading to the firing of defensive coordinator Nick Holt and two other assistants. A remade defensive staff, and new schemes, have been well-received by players. Now comes the test of translating that into improvement on the field.

Hold the line

The Huskies' offensive line has suffered a succession of injuries since last season that could force untested players onto the field earlier than hoped. In particular, UW could have two new tackles, redshirt sophomores Ben Riva and Micah Hatchie, neither of whom has started. Each will need to mature quickly.

Kick it in gear

An easy-to-overlook factor in UW's success the past few years was its steady kicking games, led by strong-legged punter Kiel Rasp and kicker Erik Folk, each of whom has graduated. JC transfer Travis Coons is expected to take over as kicker and true frosh Korey Durkee as punter and UW is hoping for a seamless transition.

Find a running game

The biggest personnel loss from the 2011 season might have been tailback Chris Polk, who left a year early for the NFL. Junior Jesse Callier and sophomore Bishop Sankey will likely share the carries in his absence as the Huskies will go with more of a committee approach.

Bob Condotta

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