BROCK AND SALK

Why Brock has big expectations for UW Huskies spring game

May 2, 2024, 10:47 AM | Updated: 10:48 am

UW Huskies Husky Stadium Oregon general...

A general scenic view as UW Huskies fans cheer at Husky Stadium on Oct. 14, 2023. (Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

(Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

UW Huskies spring football have been going on for the last month, and new head coach Jedd Fisch has turned the Dawgs’ practices into high-profile affairs.

Caple’s Notebook: Checking in from UW Huskies spring practice

Two legendary coaches who were in the NFL this time a year ago have dropped by in Bill Belichick and Pete Carroll, whose sons are the defensive and offensive coordinators for Fisch, respectively.

Another famous name from the coaching ranks has dropped by in Jack Del Rio, whose son Luke Del Rio is an offensive analyst on the staff.

And just this week, energetic Los Angeles Clippers owner and former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer dropped by to talk to the squad.

That’s helped put some extra attention on a Huskies program that had an interesting start to 2024, to say the least. In January, Washington played in the national championship game, then lost previous coach Kalen DeBoer to Alabama and hired Fisch away from Arizona – all in the span of seven days.

With all the buzz that Fisch has been able to get going around the Huskies, Friday could be an especially big night for the program. Why? The team will hold a spring game dubbed “Dawgs After Dark” at 6:30 p.m. at Husky Stadium, and former UW quarterback Brock Huard believes it’s going to turn some heads because of the attendance for the free event.

“I think there could be 35-40,000 people at that spring game on Friday night,” Huard said on Wednesday’s edition of Seattle Sports’ Brock and Salk. “… I think we’re going to see some attendance numbers that won’t be Deion Sanders-like in his first year in Boulder (as Colorado coach), like selling out the stadium, but they’re doing this on Friday night, looks like 65 degrees, so a little bit warmer weather coming to Seattle which will help. … They have done an excellent job, their marketing team, their videography team, just the selling of the product and everything that’s going on.”

Fisch has taken part in the marketing himself, even visiting houses on Greek Row to promote the spring game.

Huard, who is also a FOX college football analyst, shared some other reasons that interest should be high for Friday.

“You’ve got a quarterback battle – who’s going to replace Michael Penix? – I think which is fascinating. You’re coming off of playing in the national championship. I think there is some goodwill,” he said. “And Jedd can sell, and I think the program is selling pretty well. I’m kind of anxious to see Friday night’s attendance numbers and what some of that buzz is, because they took a chunk – as they went on that run last year – they took a chunk in becoming relevant. There’s a relevancy pie in every market and they took a big chunk of it of being really relevant in our market. Can they continue to do that with now 14 Huskies moving on to the NFL?”

Blue 88, a segment where Brock Huard answers three football questions, airs live at 7:45 a.m. weekdays on Seattle Sports’ Brock and Salk. Listen to the full edition from Wednesday’s show in the podcast at this link or in the player near the top of this post.

More on UW Huskies football

Huard: Seahawks are great fit for UW Huskies UDFA Westover
Surprise No. 8 pick Michael Penix Jr. wowed Falcons in pre-draft workout
OL Roger Rosengarten is fifth from UW Huskies drafted at No. 62
Ja’Lynn Polk is fourth UW Huskies draft pick, to Patriots at No. 37
Caple: A few thoughts on UW Huskies’ big first round in NFL Draft

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