Washington Huskies

Matisse Thybulle befriends pet vacuum while self quarantining

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@itsmatisse

Matisse Thybulle befriends pet vacuum while self quarantining

Picture Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly in the movie Step Brothers.

Ferrell (Brennan): “Did we just become best friends?”

Reilly (Dale): Yep!

Now, picture Matisse Thybulle and a Roomba. Yes, that just happened. 

The former UW basketball star, and Philadelphia 76ers first-round pick in 2019, recently shared a video to his TikTok account of his new best friend: a Roomba.  

With his No.4 Huskies jersey hanging in the background, Thybulle walks his iRobot vacuum, teaches it to come when called, and feeds it Tostitos scoops while relaxing on the couch.

This is true friendship. 

While the NBA season remains suspended during the coronavirus outbreak, Thybulle is trying to make the most of his situation, including finding new friends to keep him busy while stuck in quarantine.

The rookie is averaging 4.7 points, 1.5 rebounds and 1.2 assists through 57 games with the 76ers this season. 

Huskies Hunter Bryant ranked as the top undrafted free agent signee

Huskies Hunter Bryant ranked as the top undrafted free agent signee

Washington Huskies tight end Hunter Bryant falling out of the NFL Draft confused many.

Coming into this year’s Draft, Bryant was considered to be one of the best tight ends on the board.  

However, with knee injuries hindering his first two seasons with the Huskies (14 total games), NFL teams may have been too concerned about his overall health.

There were a total of only 12 tight ends taken in the Draft. Notre Dame's Cole Kmat was the first TE selected in the 2nd round by the Chicago Bears.

In 60 games, Kmat recorded 691 receiving yards and six touchdowns, compared to Bryants 85 games and 1394 yards and 5 touchdowns. 

In the end, no team took Bryant off the board.

But, not long after the Draft was over, the Detroit Lions came calling and signed Bryant as an undrafted free agent.

A recent report from PFF says the Lions got the biggest steal in the draft.

Bryant falling out of the draft is the clear-cut biggest head-scratcher on this list. He was 79th overall and the top-ranked tight end on our board, and it’s not as if we were significantly higher on him than most draft pundits. Bryant came in at 98th overall (TE3) on the consensus big board put together over at The Athletic. Barring red flags popping up related to several knee injuries he suffered in the past, Bryant falling out of the draft entirely is a shock.

That plays to the benefit of the Lions. He has arguably the best receiving chops of any tight end in this class, putting up a receiving grade of 91.7 since 2017 to go along with a class-high 2.90 yards per route run. The Lions are already pretty heavily invested at tight end between spending a first-round pick on TJ Hockenson last season and signing Jesse James to a decent-sized deal, but Bryant brings a different element to the group and has the potential to really benefit that offense.

Regardless of past knee injuries, Bryant’s junior season was solid and productive. He earned All-American First Team honors and was a John Mackey Award finalist. He had the third most receiving yards amongst tight ends last season.

The Lions might have the steal, but with an already heavy tight end group with TJ Hockenson and recently signed Jesse James, Bryant could find his way into the offense and really benefit the group as a solid backup.

Jacob Eason had to wait, but Colts selection just might be a perfect fit

Jacob Eason had to wait, but Colts selection just might be a perfect fit

The Indianapolis Colts selected University of Washington quarterback Jacob Eason in the fourth round with the 122nd overall pick Saturday. 

Eason, a junior out of Lake Stevens, Washington, transferred from the University of Georgia to the UW following the 2017 season after he was beat out for the starting QB job by Jake Fromm. 

Per transfer rules, Eason was forced to sit out the 2018 season, but won the job in 2019. 

In 13 games last season, the Huskies QB threw 23 touchdowns against 8 interceptions and 3,132 yards. 

On December 26, 2019, Eason announced that he would forgo his senior year and enter the 2020 NFL Draft.

After the first two days of the NFL Draft, Eason remained on the board with Joe Burrow, Tua Tagovailoa, Justin Herbert, Jordan Love and Jalen Hurts being selected before him. 

Some began to speculated that maybe he should have returned for his senior season, but while Eason the board longer than he probably wanted, the selection to the Colts could be a perfect situation for him. 

There will not be any pressure on Eason to come in and start right away. The Colts currently have Philip Rivers, Jacoby Brissett and Chad Kelly on the roster. Eason will have a chance to learn from QBs with a ton of experience while learning the NFL ropes. 

And after the 2020 season, there are no QBs under contract, opening the door for Eason to compete for the starting job. 

Eason has good arm accuracy, poise under pressure and can extend a play with his legs, but needs to work on his progressions and third down efficiency. He'll have ample time to improve under Rivers and Brissett. 

Eason has a lot to learn, but Indianapolis might just be the perfect place for him to do it.

 

2020 NFL Draft: Washington TE Hunter Bryant

2020 NFL Draft: Washington TE Hunter Bryant

Hunter Bryant

Position: Tight end
Year: Junior
Hometown: Issaquah, WA

Measurables: 

Height: 6’2 

Weight: 248

Hands: 10 right hand (pinky deformation), 10 3/8 left hand

Arms: 32"

Wingspan: 76 4/8

NFL Combine results: 

3 Cone Drill: 7.08

40 Yard Dash: 4.74 seconds 

20 Yard Shuttle: 4.46 seconds

Broad Jump: 115.0 inches

Vertical Jump: 32.5 inches

Bench Press: 23 reps

Overview

Before joining the Huskies, Bryant was a four-star recruit out of Eastside Catholic in Bellevue, WA. He was heavily recruited by schools like Auburn and Oklahoma before setting his sights on Washington. 

In three years, Bryant has emerged as one to top-100 players in the nation. His connection with transfer quarterback Jacob Eason was on display in 2019. The two connected for 52 receptions, 825 yards and three touchdowns. His receptions were second-most in UW single-season history by a tight end.

For his stellar season, Bryant garnered first-team All-Pac-12 honors and was named All-America First Team by The Athletic, All-America Third Team by Phil Steele and a finalist for the John Mackey Award.

Draft projections

Hunter is expected to be a high second-round pick.

NFL.com has given Bryant a 6.20 prospect grade, which means he’s a good backup with the potential of becoming a starter.

[RELATED: Report: Two Huskies land pre-draft interviews with San Francisco 49ers]

NFL comparison:

Jonnu Smith

Strengths

- Quickness
- Run after catch skills
- Versatility

Weaknesses

- Undersized TE
- Needs more physicality at top of routes
- In-line work

Social media workouts

Bryant, like his teammate Salvon Ahmed, has been working out with Tracy Ford of Ford Sports Performance. Ford works with some of the NFL's elite talent. 

Bryant also shared a hype video earlier this month with the message: "Ready for the next chapter."

2020 NFL Draft: Washington QB Jacob Eason

2020 NFL Draft: Washington QB Jacob Eason

Jacob Eason

Position: Quarterback
Year: Junior
Hometown: Lake Stevens, WA

Measurables: 

Height: 6’5 7/8" 

Weight: 231

Hand: 9 4/8"

Arm: 32 7/8

Wingspan: 79

NFL Combine results: 

40 Yd Dash: 4.89 seconds

Vertical Jump: 27.5 inches

Broad Jump: 110 inches

3 Cone Drill: 7.5 seconds

20 Yd Shuttle: 4.75 seconds

Overview

After just one year starting at UW, Eason declared for the 2020 NFL Draft and decided to forgo his final year of eligibility.

Eason transferred from Georgia and sat out the 2018 season due to NCAA transfer rules, before starting 13 games for the Huskies in 2019. He completed 260-of-405 passes for 3,132 yards, the fourth-highest total in UW single-season history.

Draft projections

ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper ranked Eason his No. 4 quarterback behind Oregon’s Justin Herbert, Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa and LSU’s Joe Burrow ahead of the NFL Combine. 

Since the combine, Eason has been more recently listed as the fifth or sixth QB taken off the board, behind Utah State's Jordan Love and Georgia's Jake Fromm. Nonetheless, he's forecasted to be a second or third-round selection. 

NFL comparison:

Ryan Mallet

Strengths

- Arm accuracy
- Good poise under duress
- Ability to extend the play with his legs

Weaknesses
- Progressions
- Efficiency on third downs
- Modest pocket ability

Social media workouts

Following the NFL Combine in February, Eason shared out this "thank you" on Instagram. 

2020 NFL Draft Profile: Washington RB Salvon Ahmed

2020 NFL Draft Profile: Washington RB Salvon Ahmed

Salvon Ahmed

Position: Running back
Year: Junior
Hometown: Kirkland, WA

Measurables: 

Height: 5’11"

Weight: 197

Hands: 8 3/4"

Arms: 29 1/4

Wingspan: 71 5/8

NFL Combine results:

40-yard dash: 4.62 seconds

Vertical jump: 34.5 inches

Broad jump: 120.0 inches 

Overview

The junior out of Juanita High School served as a backup to Myles Gaskin before taking over as starter in 2019. Ahmed finished the year with 1,000 yards rushing at 5.5 yards per carry and nine touchdowns, as well as 14 catches for 58 yards receiving.

His biggest outing for the Huskies came against USC in September, when the 5-11 tailback had a 89-yard touchdown just moments after Elijah Molden had an end zone interception for Washington. It was the fifth longest touchdown run in Husky history.

Ahmed capped off his senior season with two rushing touchdowns in the Las Vegas Bowl vs. Boise State. He added six rushes for 20 yards and two receptions for 26 yards in his team’s 38-7 win. He was named All-Pac-12 honorable mention for the second time in his career.

Draft projections

Many believe Ahmed is a Day 2 player, but it’s possible he could slip to a team on Day 3.

Strengths

- Speed and acceleration
- Footwork 
- Special teams’ value

Weaknesses

- Size
- Lack of experience
- Inability to churn out yards in tight space

Social media workouts

Ahmed shared a post to his Twitter of a workout with Tracy Ford of Ford Sports Performance. Ford has worked with some of the NFL's top talent, including Seahawks linebackers Bobby Wagner and K.J Wright. 

Washington forward Jaden McDaniels declares for 2020 NBA Draft

Washington forward Jaden McDaniels declares for 2020 NBA Draft

The Seattle-area native and Washington Huskies forward Jaden McDaniels has officially declared for the 2020 NBA Draft:

View this post on Instagram

Roll The Dice ❤️💙

A post shared by Jmac (@therealjadenmcdaniels) on

McDaniels only spend one season at the University of Washington. During that one season, he averaged 12.9 points per game, to go along with 5.8 rebounds and 1.3 blocks per contest.

He is listed as a 6’10 and started in 21 of his 31 games for the Huskies.

During his high school days as a senior at Federal Way in Seattle, he was one of the highest-rated recruits in the nation. He played with his brother, Jalen, at Federal Way High School. 

Jalen is currently a rookie with the Charlotte Hornets(link). Jaden decided he did not want to leave the area and chose to stay home and play for Washington, despite having offers from, Texas, UCLA, and even Kentucky.

McDaniels is ranked, by some scouts, to be a middle of the first-round prospect. Some have him in the late-lottery, while others have him in the early-20s. A lot of teams could be looking for a player like McDaniels with his size and wingspan at the wing position ( he has 8’11’’ standing reach).

McDaniels needs to add strength to compete in the NBA. He led the PAC-12 in both turnovers and fouls as a freshman, which indicates a lack of focus at times.

With all that height and talent, there are still some things the new soon to be rookie needs to work on. Last season, he led the PAC-12 in both turnovers and fouls as a freshman, McDaniels fouled out eight times and picked up six technical fouls.

Granted, Jaden is still very young ( turns 20 in September) and he truly hasn’t reached his full potential yet or really grown full into his body. McDaniels could be a steal in the draft if taken by the right team. The ceiling is very high for this bright young star out of Washington.

Check out some of his highlights from his Freshman year

Report: Two Huskies land pre-draft interviews with San Francisco 49ers

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USA Today Images

Report: Two Huskies land pre-draft interviews with San Francisco 49ers

Oregon’s Justin Herbert isn’t the only draft prospect from the Pacific Northwest on teams’ radars ahead of the 2020 NFL Draft.  

Per NBC Sports Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco, the San Francisco 49ers recently spoke with University of Washington tight end Hunter Bryant and running back Salvon Ahmed via Facetime. 

As a junior, Bryant caught 52 passes for 825 receiving yards and had three touchdowns in 12 games. He earned first-team All-Pac-12 honors and was named All-America First Team by The Athletic, All-America Third Team by Phil Steele and a finalist for the John Mackey Award.

The Washington native is currently expected to be a high second-round pick. 

[RELATED: NFL Combine profile: Washington TE Hunter Bryant]

 Ahmed had 188 carries for 1,020 rushing yards with 11 touchdowns in 2019 and garnered All-Pac-12 Honorable Mention for the second time in his Husky career. He is believed to be day two or day selection come April. 

[RELATED: NFL Combine profile: Washington running back Salvon Ahmed]

Bryant and Ahmed join quarterback Jacob Eason and offensive tackle Trey Adams as Dawgs hoping to hear their name called on draft day.

Despite coronavirus concerns, the NFL Draft is expected to go on as scheduled from April 23-25. 

Legendary UW football coach Jim Lambright dies at 77

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University of Washington Athletics

Legendary UW football coach Jim Lambright dies at 77

If anyone bled purple and gold, it was Coach Lambo. 

Former University of Washington head coach Jim Lambright, who was a player, assistant coach and head coach for the team, has passed away at the age of 77.

His death was confirmed by his family on Sunday, although his cause of death has not been disclosed. 

"Coach Lambright was a legend at the UW, particularly when it came to playing the kind of physical, aggressive defense that his teams were known for,” UW head football coach Jimmy Lake said in a statement. “He was always supportive of the program that he loved so much. His impact on Husky football will not be forgotten."

Lambright took the helm as Washington head coach in 1993 when Don James retired. During his tenure, he helped lead the Huskies to a Pac-10 Championship in 1995 and a 44-25-1 record as head coach. He was relieved of his head coaching duties in 1998.

He previously held the role as the school’s defensive coordinator from 1978 to 1992, where his juggernaut defense led Washington to a national championship in 1991, which the team shared with Miami. His official biography says Lambright “redefined defensive football at the University of Washington,” with his toughness on the sidelines. Under James and Lambright, the Huskies claimed six Pac-8 and Pac-10 titles. 

As a player, Lambright earned All-Coast as a defensive end in 1964 and took home Washington’s Guy Flaherty Most Inspirational award, the school’s oldest and most prestigious individual award.

"I'm deeply saddened by the news of Coach Lambright's passing,” UW Director of Athletics Jennifer Cohen said in a statement. “Coach Lambright is synonymous with Husky football and he gave so much to this program both as a player and coach. My love for the University of Washington was sparked during Coach's tenure on our football staff and I'm grateful for the impact he had on so many. I'd like to extend heartfelt condolences to his family, former players, teammates and coaches." 

Following the loss of Coach Lambo, former UW safety and Rip City Mornings co-host Nigel Burton, who played for the Huskies from 1996-1998, delivered this poignant message. 

Coach Lambright changed the trajectory of my life by just giving me a chance. Once he told me he believed in me, it was game over. It wasn’t about the doubters. I wanted to prove Lambo right for taking the chance. I’m forever indebted. #RIPLambo.

 

More former players and friends spoke about the Huskies coach’s defensive prowess and determination to succeed. 

Lambright is survived by his daughter Kris and son Eric; and grandchildren Caroline and Matt.

 

UW fans deliver encouraging messages to medical community on Husky Stadium Board

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@uwathletics

UW fans deliver encouraging messages to medical community on Husky Stadium Board

UW Football fans finally got a chance to get their names on the Husky Stadium video board on Friday, and their heartwarming messages were something else. 

While some Dawgs chose to wish their friends a happy birthday or shout out their favorite Huskies fan, a vast number of messages poured in supporting doctors and nurses, firefighters, and grocery workers, who are all working hard during the coronavirus pandemic in Washington State. 

The messages on the photoshopped video board were inspiring.  

Hall of Famer Walter Jones also responded to the thread with an insightful tweet of his own.  

“Seattle, we need you to do one thing,” Jones said. “Block your need to go outside the same way I blocked people coming at [Matt] @Hasselbeck. Together, we can make #COVID19 retire early. #WeGotThisSeattle.”

Jones spent his entire career, 1997-2008, as a member of the Seahawks, protecting nine different quarterbacks, including Hasselbeck and Warren Moon. If anyone knows anything about blocking, it’s Jones. 

Stay inside, Seattle, and keep delivering well-wishes to those who can't!