There is no substitute for a good work ethic. Even in the absence of superior speed, strength, agility, or height, work ethic opens opportunity. And that is the name of the game for the Washington Football Team.
The team has an excellent coaching staff. In fact, it starts with the best strength and conditioning program in the PAC-12. Washington Huskies Tim Socha gets it. He knows that hard work proves to be the equalizer. So he pushes his players to their limits. And that results in solid football play.
But strength and conditioning is just one part. The next is technique. And that is where co-defensive coordinator Jimmy Lake takes over. Lake developed three Washington Husky defensive backs to the second round of the 2017 NFL Draft in Sidney Jones, Kevin King, and Budda Baker. This season, the team anticipates no drop off in production.
Can that be true? Is it possible for any college defensive backfield to lose three of four starters, all of whom are selected in the second round of an NFL Draft, and anticipate no dropoff? Well if any team can, it’s the Washington Huskies.
Go Jump In The Lake
Even as your read this, the team works hard to stay one jump ahead of the draft. And as such, the team has excellent depth as a rule. In fact, that next-man-up principal was discussed by cornerback Kevin King in an April 2017 Sports Illustrated article by Lindsay Schnell.
"“Jojo McIntosh, Taylor, Jordan Miller and Byron, they’re all going to be really good,” King says. “Because they had great examples, but they also have the intangibles: They move well, know how to play the ball, and they just know what good defensive backs look like. There’s no doubt that group, they’re going to surprise some people.”"
That’s the stuff of champions, of teamwork. The confidence of starters in the next man up is more than a mission statement or a mantric chant. It’s how the Huskies roll. It’s the incredible preparation defensive backs gain from coach Jimmy Lake.