the year you find out Santa isn't real", I'm not listening to it anymore."> the year you find out Santa isn't real", I'm not listening to it anymore.">

Ramble On! Pac-10 Picks, Week Eleven

SO ITS APPLE Cup week again. They say the night before the big game is just like the night before Christmas. I find this funny, because I can't remember a string of six years when Frosty the Snowman kicked me in the face and made me throw my eggnog cartons at the reindeer. So unless they want to change the saying to "the night before the big game is just like the night before Christmas <i><b>the year you find out Santa isn't real</i></b>", I'm not listening to it anymore.

What did we learn last week? UCLA won their first November game since the Taft administration, UW finally pushed the spread, Buddy T is coaching like he doesn't want a job next year, and the Cougs should NEVER wear bright red pants.

Only three games this week, so I guess my winning record is in tact for the first year. Not bad considering I took the Cougs in every game no matter what I really felt, and didn't buy into Cal until about last week.

At the beginning of the season, I drew a similarity between this Cal team and the 2002 Husky team, and as it turns out the only similarity is that both teams have a coach leaving after the season. It's going to be Cal's first Rose Bowl in 46 years; hey, it beats 67. Can I start the first rumor that Eugene Francis will be UW's coach next season? Bears

I understand that the Civil War is a play on the state divided between the two schools, but I still can't help but chuckle in trying to draw similarities between it and the actual Civil War… Ever wonder what would happen if Bull Run were fought on field turf? Would the Confederate Army be sponsored by potato salad? Would the Union put up billboards? Would General Grant forge signatures for men under 18? Would Stonewall dress his troops in "Lightning Yellow" and have alternate uniforms for road battles? Would the Gettysburg address be issued over the 3rd down chainsaw? Would Oregon State still win by 20? Beavers


Every year someone asks me who will win this game, and I do my best Bill Swartzki SuperFan impression to say the Cougs will win 97 to –2. The Cougs will score so many points, the scoreboard operator will have to adjust by taking points away from the dogs. But the joy wore off after the cup a few years ago. Last time the Huskies were in Pullman, Martin Stadium turned into what I swore was a WWF arena. All we needed was Rick Neuheisel to take a steel chair to the back of Mike Price while Gordon Reiese removed his referee jersey to reveal his purple allegiance. All the while, Jim Walden is crying "NOOOOO!" while Bob Robertson cries about how this could be the end of the sport as we know it. And Fading to black, all we see is Reise, Neuheisel, Reggie, and Babs toasting beers at the 50-yard line over some song about crossing Dardanelles. (So I watched a little wrestling in the 90s, don't act like you didn't….) We need something new: No more SuperFan proclamations from me. From now on, I'm going Lou Holtz in my approach. So for the sake of karma, my pick in this year's Apple Cup: Huskies

Last Week: 3-2
Season Total: 40-20 (two outta three ain't bad…)

Well, the gambling didn't do so well this year. Leave it to the Ducks to mess up my parlay. So if Toshiba Fund III comes to fruition, I won't get to brag about it in print. Don't worry: if it ever happens, I'll turn the tv up really loud so you know I have it.

This week, I stake my "riches" in:
UTEP (-21 ½) over SMU
Oregon St (-3 ½) over Oregon
Auburn (-10) over Alabama
Michigan (-5 ½) over Ohio St
Michigan St (-3) over Penn St
North Texas (-4 ½) over Arkansas St
Wyoming (+8) over New Mexico

Well, as the Cougs aren't going bowling this year, this ends the first volume from the Rambler. It's been a blast telling jokes, and even more fun reading your hate mail. Special thanks goes to my buddies who have taken shots for the sake of (bad) comedy, the Arizona State Athletic Department, my sister in Vietnam who told me that while searching for my column on Google, most websites that turned up directed her to fansites of Kylie Minogue (which explains the sole reason I have any traffic at all), Mike Stoops' play calling, fans in Section 26, the coaches, players, and parents I've written with, and my ever-so-incredibly tolerant readers. We'll have a new Husky coach to rip into next year; it should be a blast. See you then!

Have a question or comment? Need a stock tip? Can't find a date for your High School Reunion (or better yet, your prom?) Hit up the mailbag at

Cougfan Top Stories