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Football practice day 7: Keith-to-Kasen hits the highlight reel

The Keith Price of the 2013 season continues to distance himself from the Keith Price of the 2012 season.

Monday night, during the Washington football team’s eighth practice of fall camp, the quarterback lofted a pass through double coverage, over the outstretched arms of Greg Ducre and Will Shamburger, toward wide receiver Kasen Williams. Ducre, Shamburger, and Williams collided in the air in a mess of flying limbs and fell to the ground in a heap. As the trio separated, it was Williams who came up with the ball. The 60-yard completion was a highlight for Price thus far in fall camp, and is a sign of what’s so different about the current version of the UW’s quarterback compared to the one that took the field last season: trust.

“Kasen is always telling me, ‘Hey man, just give me a chance, no matter who I got,” Price said. “It was kind of a gutsy throw, but it’s all about trusting your guys. Last season I didn’t do enough of that, and he made a tremendous play.”

A year ago, Price admitted he wouldn’t have attempted such a risky throw. My, how things have changed.

Price is thriving under head coach Steve Sarkisian’s up-tempo offense and his receivers have responded to the quarterback’s leadership. Sophomore Jaydon Mickens got several looks deep down the field and made some big gains during scrimmage periods Monday, and John Ross continues to stand out among the pack of highly touted freshman receivers.

Thus far, the UW’s offense has consistently ben sprinting up and down the field during scrimmages. Sarkisian is looking to go even faster still though.

“We want to push it as fast as we can go because then we can always pull it back,” the head coach said. “I want to train these guys in their belief of going fast. I want them to feel comfortable going as fast as we can go. I made the analogy to our quarterbacks that this car can go as fast as we can, but we have to handle it. If you get behind the wheel of a Ferrari and it can go 200 miles an hour, but if you can’t handle it then we have to tone it down. … I want to go as fast as we can go, but still be efficient.”

Notes:

— Austin Seferian-Jenkins jammed his pinkie finger during a team scrimmage period and went to the locker room, but came right back.

— Cornerback Marcus Peters sat out of practice due to a bruised knee he sustained Saturday after getting tied up with wide receiver Diandre Campbell. Peters is expected back in a few days. During scrimmage periods, Cleveland Wallace stepped into Peters’ starting role.

— Offensive lineman Erik Kohler returned to practice Monday, but was on crutches and in a walking boot. He hurt his foot earlier in the summer.

— In the place kicking battle, senior Travis Coons was a perfect 4-for-4, while freshman Cameron Van Winkle was only 1-for-4. Coons was good from 28, 38, 42, and 52 yards while Van Winkle only made the 28-yarder.

Reach Sports Editor Thuc Nhi Nguyen at sports@dailyuw.com. Twitter: @thucnhi21

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