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UW North Dakota game recap 45-3 9-8-18

Washington head coach Chris Petersen said the running game was “not good.”

Asked to rate his performance, quarterback Jake Browning said “sub par.”

Neither was a description UW wanted to be using after its home opener against North Dakota. The Huskies won big, beating the Fighting Hawks 45-3, but a slow start and a struggling run game generated a sober postgame mood.

“On offense, we need to do better,” Petersen said. “Certainly running the ball, we need to do better. We’ll lock in on that and figure out how.”

UW led 17-0 at halftime and had just 54 rushing yards, averaging 3.4 yards per carry. That total included a 24-yard Myles Gaskin run that closed out the second quarter. Without it, UW would’ve entered the break with 30 rushing yards and a 1.9 yards per carry average.

The Huskies’ vaunted ground game hasn’t quite hit its stride this season.

Against North Dakota, the Huskies finished with 195 rushing yards with much of the yardage coming late in the second half. In the loss to Auburn last week, UW had 102 yards on the ground and finished with a 3.1 yards per carry average.

Even Gaskin hasn’t broken out just yet. He’s averaging 64 yards per game through two games.

His early season performance is reminiscent of last year, when he averaged just 51 yards through the first three games of the season. He finished the season averaging 106.2 yards per game.

Asked if the Gaskin’s slow starts were similar, Browning deferred comment to the offensive line.

“I’m not going to sit here and talk about the running game when I feel like I didn’t play well either,” Browning said.

While Petersen was mostly critical of the Huskies’ running game, he offered some compliments to the backup running backs who played late and padded UW’s running stats.


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