Through seven games, the Huskies rank last in the Pac-12 in total offense and last in the FBS in total plays run.

Share story

Here are the raw statistics for the Washington Huskies offense through seven games:

  • 24.0: points per game, which ranks 11th in the Pac-12.
  • 211.9: passing yards, which ranks 10th in the Pac-12.
  • 122.3: rushing yards, which ranks 12th in the Pac-12.
  • 334.2: total yards per game, which ranks 12th in the Pac-12.
  • 34.5: third-down conversion percentage, which ranks 11th in the Pac-12.
  • 415: total plays, fewest in the FBS through seven games.

And some figures on the makeup of UW’s roster:

  • 7: freshmen who have started at least one game on offense.
  • 16: underclassmen listed on the offense’s depth chart (with four seniors and seven juniors also listed).
  • 9: different players who have started on the offensive line.
  • 15: combined games started by those nine linemen before this season.

UW coach Chris Petersen on Monday was asked how much of the Huskies’ offensive struggles should fall on the offensive coordinator, Jonathan Smith.

“I think we can go through every single play and show you where it is,” Petersen said. “The head coach, the quarterback, those guys always have to take the bullets and there are a lot more people involved than just that.”

The Huskies (3-4, 1-3 Pac-12) managed to run a mere 45 plays in Saturday’s 31-14 loss at then-No. 10 Stanford; it’s the fewest number of plays by a UW offense since a 41-0 loss to Stanford in 2010 and the fewest Petersen said he has ever been associated with. UW had possession against Stanford just 19 minutes, 55 seconds, the fifth-worst time of possession in school history.

Redshirt freshman quarterback K.J. Carta-Samuels made his first career start in place of injured freshman Jake Browning, and the Huskies trailed 17-0 at halftime.

“We didn’t convert a third down in the first half and it looked pretty ugly,” Smith said after the game.

Petersen repeatedly lamented the Huskies’ lack of execution on third downs, on which they were 4-of-11.

A year ago, after another redshirt freshman QB, Troy Williams, made his first start for UW in a loss to Arizona State, Petersen also defended Smith, who has again become the main target of fan frustration.

“I think he’s doing a good job, I really do,” Petersen said then, adding: “He’s a smart guy, he knows football, he knows quarterback play. Like I said, it’s not going to be a snap of the fingers. They’re all brand-new quarterbacks who’ve never played a snap of college football. … There’s a lot of little factors that go in there. But we’ll get there. We’ll get there eventually.”

With such a young offense — it’s the youngest in the Pac-12 — Petersen was asked if the offensive plans have had to be simplified this season.

“We’re very aware of that with the new guys we have,” he said. “I don’t think that, in terms of what we’re putting into the game plan has been handcuffing by any imagination. Sometimes it does show up a little bit in execution — not so much blown assignments, maybe a step short, maybe a little bit late (is) increased; not being able to react at the snap of a finger. So that shows up a little bit. But we feel like we’ve just got to keep building on it, and each one of these guys seems to be making progress each game.”