Nov 5, 2011; Seattle, WA, USA; Washington Huskies quarterback Keith Price (17) throws the ball during the game against the Oregon Ducks at Husky Stadium. Oregon defeated Washington 34-17. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-US PRESSWIRE

Pac-12 Conference Football Preview: Washington Huskies (Part 1: Offense)

The Washington Huskies had a very nice season in 2011. The Huskies finished last season with an overall record of 7-6 and a conference record of 5-4. Through their first eight games of 2011, Washington was sitting pretty with an overall record of 6-2, but then they played teams such as: Oregon and USC. In their last four games of the regular season, they finished with a record of 1-3 that put them at 7-5 for the regular season. Washington earned a bid to play in the Alamo Bowl against #12 Baylor. The game was an absolute shootout, but Robert Griffin III and Baylor beat the Huskies by a score of 67-56.

The Huskies will need to look to their offense if they would like to do better in the Pac-12 in 2012. Here’s a look at the averages they had per game and their rankings compared to the other schools in Division I:

  • Total: 409.9 yards (38th overall)
  • Passing: 270.2 yards (36th overall)
  • Rushing: 154.3 yards (63rd overall)

Nov 5, 2011; Seattle, WA, USA; Washington Huskies quarterback Keith Price (17) throws the ball during the 1st half against the Oregon Ducks at Husky Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-US PRESSWIRE

Going into the 2012 season, the Washington Huskies are going to have to do some replacing, but the biggest replacement needs to be that of Chris Polk. Polk left after four season with the Huskies and signed with the Philadelphia Eagles on April 28th, 2012 after going undrafted in the 2012 NFL Draft. Last season at Washington, Polk rushed for 1,488 yards on 293 attempts and had twelve rushing touchdowns. He also had 332 receiving yards on 31 receptions and had four receiving touchdowns.

The job of replacing Polk in 2012 will fall into the lap of Jesse Callier. Last season, Callier rushed for 260 yards on 47 attempts and had one rushing touchdown. He also returned kicks for the Huskies in 2011. He had 576 kick return yards on 25 returns. Callier was named as a preseason candidate for the Doak Walker Award in 2012.

However, the most important Husky going into the 2012 season is the junior quarterback, Keith Price. As a sophomore in 2011, Price threw for 362 yards on 242 completions and threw 33 touchdowns and eleven interceptions. Price has been listed as a preseason candidate for the Manning Award in 2012.

Last season was Price’s first year as the starter for Washington after he backed up Jake Locker in 2010. At the Pac-12 Media Day on July 23rd, 2012, Price was asked if he had made an adjustments during the offseason. Price responded with…

“Actually, I’m still learning things. Obviously, I’m not a senior. Last year was only my first year. I think the next step for me is recognizing defense and being able to change protections and getting ourselves into the manageable plays without Coach “Sark” having to tell me to check.”

Price will need to show more maturity if the Huskies want to be more successful in 2012. If he can make the adjustments he needs to, there is no reason why the Washington Huskies should have less than seven wins this season.

The Washington Huskies will also be without their top two receivers from 2011. Devin Aguilar signed with the Tennessee Titans after going undrafted in the NFL Draft and Jermaine Kearse signed with the Seattle Seahawks as an undrafted free agent.

For more stories on Washington, check out The Husky Haul.

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Tags: 2012 NFL Draft Alamo Bowl Baylor Chris Polk Devin Aguilar Doak Walker Doak Walker Award Jake Locker Jermaine Kearse Jesse Callier Keith Price Manning Award NFL Draft Oregon Pac-12 Pac-12 Media Day Philadelphia Eagles Robert Griffin III Seattle Seahawks Tennessee Titans USC Washing Football Washington Washington Huskies

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