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Huskies’ Lindquist staying positive during fall football camp
As Jeff Lindquist gears for the start of the 2014 football season under a new coach and amidst a quarterback competition, the Husky sophomore and former Mercer Island standout seems to be taking it all in stride.
“There’s a tremendous, positive vibe,” Lindquist said over the phone after Sunday’s practice. “The staff brings a whole new level of positivity. They’re great coaches to be working with. It feels like hard work is valued by them, which is always nice as a player.”
That vibe seems to have stretched to the UW quarterbacks, as Lindquist aims to remain positive as he competes with redshirt freshman Troy Williams for the starting QB spot in the Huskies’ opener Aug. 30 at Hawaii, while sophomore quarterback Cyler Miles serves a one-game suspension.
Lindquist has maintained a friendly attitude toward the competition while focusing on what he could contribute in camp.
“I just want to help the team win when I can,” he said. “The big goal with earning the job is to give it everything I’ve got and see where the cards fall where they may.”
When asked how the return of Miles affected the mind-set going into the competition, Lindquist praised his counterpart, saying he helped raise the level of competition.
“Everyone’s given an equal shot, and we’re just worrying about ourselves and what we can do. Cyler’s a great player, and we raise the bars for each other. That’s what we’re all about.”
Lindquist said he’s been working on his accuracy and getting a good grasp of new head coach Chris Peterson’s offensive system. Since his first season with the Huskies, Lindquist has had three quarterback coaches in three years, so as a quarterback, he was used to coaching changes. But he admitted the new coaching staff did present a lot to take in at first.
Since arriving at UW as a redshirt freshman himself, Lindquist said getting a better grasp of the quarterback position from a mental aspect has been crucial.
“The big transition from high school to college has been the mental side to the game. It’s a lot more advanced, there’s a lot more knowledge at the quarterback level to be successful. I’ve come a long was the last two years understanding offense. At the college level, you find everybody’s out there on the field for a reason. There’s an elevated element of skill. Everybody’s better, so you have to be better to be successful.”
Lindquist said whoever lands the starting job Aug. 30 will have to make sure to throw the ball well and lean on the team’s skill players to have success against Hawaii.
“One thing we’ll have to do is be accurate with the football and, in a sense, just manage the offense like we’re point guards,” he said. “We know who to get the ball to, so it’s about delegating the ball to your teammates and letting them go to work.”
In the meantime, the former Mercer Island standout will do his best to maintain confidence during competition.
“Its easier to go into a scenario where you have a bad throw or think you’re having a bad week. It’s important to stay positive, shake it off and move on. From a team standpoint, it doesn’t matter who you’re playing, if you stick together good things will happen. That’s the big thing.”