Steve Sarkisian: We've gone to totally digital playbooks

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Monday August 06, 2012

Posted by: Chris Vannini on August 6, 2012

Heading into his fourth season in Seattle, Steve Sarkisian likes where the Huskies are going. Washington has reached a bowl game in back-to-back seasons - a far cry from the 0-12 team that Sarkisian inherited.

The Huskies have earned respect. But the 2012 season will be tough early, as the first half of the season includes home games against San Diego State, Stanford and USC and road games at LSU and Oregon. The Huskies have scored their share of upsets in the past three years under Sarkisian, but they won't be catching teams off-guard.

"We are not flying under the radar anymore," he said. "Teams have circled us on their schedules. You have to understand where you are and the lay of the land. That's where we are at. We aren't sneaking up on anybody anymore. We have to throw our best punch every Saturday if we expect to win."

A new aspect of Sarkisian's program this year is the transition to digital playbooks using iPads. The players obviously love their gadgets, but it's more than just movies and Angry Birds. Washington is one of many teams across all sports to make the switch.

"One area that's different for us, we've gone totally digital from a playbook standpoint. Everything is on the iPad now, which I know the players embrace," Sarkisian said. "Obviously we're cutting down on the big notebooks, but also, I think it's something that they relate to. This is a digital world that we're living in, and I think the players probably understand the iPads better than we do, in how to operate them and get from page to page and all that stuff. So far, so good."


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Chris Vannini is a lead writer for and has covered Michigan State sports for The State News, The Oakland Press and He writes a weekly column for the Detroit Free Press on behalf of SB Nation. Vannini lives in Big Ten country, so his foot speed is far from SEC caliber, but his pulse on coaches is hard to match. Be sure to follow @CoachingBuzz on twitter and send your feedback to


Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News,, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to

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