Over the next couple days, I will be taking a look at 3 seniors (Nate Williams, Mason Foster, and Jake Locker) who have bled purple and gold. Feel free to chime in on the comments if you have something to say about these guys.
When people think of seniors on the 2010 Husky football team, they think of Jake Locker. Oh, you want me to name another one? That’s easy, Mason Foster. There is one guy who is regularly forgotten though, that’s Nate Williams.
Nate Williams came to the University of Washington in 2007 and played right away as a true freshman. He earned the honor of UW freshman defensive player of the year and showed promise throughout the season. Williams was an excellent running back in high school at Kennedy but came played safety from the get go for the Dawgs.
Just like Locker, Williams career started against Syracuse in 2007 and Locker wasn’t the only freshman who showed promise. In a play that was forgotten by many, Williams had a pass deflection in the end zone while that game was still close. It’s fitting that in his first game Nate Williams play was overshadowed by teammates.
Over his sophomore and junior seasons Nate Williams started 23 of 24 games. The only game he missed, due to injury, was last year against Arizona. It may not be a coincidence that the defense was pretty horrendous during that game and it took a miracle to win.
That brings us to this year. Nate is second on the team in tackles, and would be leading the conference in tackles if it wasn’t for that crazy linebacker playing in front of him. He is as solid as they can get on the Huskies defense.
Yet, why do we always forget him? He has been one of the three best players on the Husky defense for the last three years and his ovation on senior day was the same volume as Greg Christine’s (nothing against Greg Christine, it’s just that Nate Williams has played and succeeded in way more games).
It’s much overdue and far too little for you, Nate, but thank you. Thank you for bleeding purple and gold. Thank you for playing hard even through an 0-12 season. Even through a coaching turnover and fans ridiculing you and your team. You deserve a bowl game more than all these grumpy fans who can’t stop complaining about football in Seattle (myself included). I’ll miss seeing you at Husky Stadium next year and I hope an NFL team takes a flyer on a guy who plays his hardest even in the worst situations.
Thanks for being a Husky, Nate. You may have been overlooked quite often, but you won’t be forgotten.
Update: Little did I know Steve Kelley, Seattle Times Columnist, would write a piece on Nate Williams today too. Here’s a link to his piece.