Washington Huskies

Budda Baker returns from head injury; Dwayne Washington, Elijah Qualls still out

Washington Huskies safety Budda Baker spent the past week following concussion protocol, UW trainers evaluating him each day after he sustained an apparent head injury during UW’s loss last weekend to Utah.

He didn’t practice Tuesday, he said, but was able to practice in a limited capacity on Wednesday, then practiced fully on Thursday — taking concussion tests each day — “and I knew I could play.”

Baker started against Arizona State on Saturday and finished with three tackles.

The Huskies played without starting nose tackle Elijah Qualls, who missed his second consecutive game due to an ankle injury that occurred early in UW’s win over Arizona on Oct. 31.

And the Huskies also played without junior tailback Dwayne Washington, who has battled knee problems for the last few weeks and appeared to be limping after a few carries last week.

Redshirt freshman Greg Gaines made his second consecutive start at nose tackle and finished with three tackles.

Washington might have helped against a blitzing team such as the Sun Devils because of his versatility as a pass catcher out of the backfield — he’s third on the team with 25 receptions and 315 yards, and has rushed for 282 yards and four touchdowns.

Without him, sixth-year tailback Deontae Cooper backed up starter Myles Gaskin and carried three times for 15 yards. He had rushed only four times this season before Saturday.

“We’ve got other guys. We do,” UW coach Chris Petersen said. “We’ve got guys who can step up and make plays. It always hurts to have guys who are starters (get hurt), but we have some depth.”

Mickens 2nd in receptions

Senior receiver Jaydon Mickens caught five passes for 100 yards on Saturday, and moved into second-place on UW’s career receptions list.

He now has 183 receptions, ahead of Jermaine Kearse (180) and behind only Reggie Williams (243).


Petersen lost just 12 games in eight seasons at Boise State. He’s already lost 12 of 24 games in not-quite two seasons at UW. … Sammamish native Jordan Simone, Arizona State’s leading tackler, left the game with a knee injury and was on crutches afterward. He played at Skyline High School.