Amid all the angst over the offensive struggles for the University of Washington football team, the Huskies quietly made a lineup change for Saturday's game against Arkansas State — on defense — by swapping Cam Williams for fellow sophomore Julius Irvin at free safety.
Thus, the UW has reverted its back row to one-time starters in Williams and junior Alex Cook, who replaced redshirt freshman Kamren Fabiculanan for last weekend's Michigan game.
Should the depth chart hold up, the 6-foot, 200-pound Williams from Bakersfield, California, will start for the first time since 2019, when he pulled seven game-opening assignments as a true freshman, the last time against Boise State in the Las Vegas Bowl.
Williams, beat out by sophomore Asa Turner last season for all four games, appeared ready to reclaim a starting job in spring practice, but missed time with an unexplained injury and fell behind the others. He had two tackles, including one for lost yardage, against Michigan.
Initially, the Husky safety competition in fall camp involved six players. After Saturday's game, four will have started. That leaves Dominique Hampton and Turner still seeking No. 1 jobs this season.
Since the season began, the Huskies have made three main position changes, all on defense. Defensive tackle Jacob Bandes made his first career start at Michigan, while Cook, a three-game starter in 2020, joined him in the lineup against the Wolverines.
Bandes started as part of a three-man defensive front for the Michigan game. However, with the Huskies facing primarily a passing team in Arkansas State, the redshirt freshman from Pittsburg, California, is listed as a back-up behind sophomore defensive tackle Tuli Letuligasenoa as the UW should revert to a five-player secondary.
However offensively, running backs Richard Newton and Cam Davis are both listed No. 1 on the depth chart. Newton, a sophomore form Lancaster, California, has started the opening two games. Davis, a redshirt freshman from Rancho Cucamonga, California, has not been a starter yet.
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