Cleveland Indians Top Huskies 17-13

In all the annals of Seattle sport, has there ever been a more ghastly spectacle of an afternoon? Two beloved local teams taking the field at the same time and getting completely annihilated in the process. Forevermore, let us refer to the abysmal showings we just witnessed this weekend as simply "Black Saturday".

As our Northwest sporting afternoon unraveled before our eyes, I for one was seated comfortably at Thrapp Stadium (capacity 11). The Huskies were our first viewing priority, with the Mariners being checked on with every opportunity. Each successive time we switched back and forth, it was going from bad to worse. The Seattle Mariners were completely annihilated, like something out of a bad science fiction movie. The Huskies were overpowered physically, in a manner we haven't seen since the 1997 Nebraska game.

When you love two teams like this and they play on the same day, it can be a good thing for one's mental state. I say this in that, should one team falter, the other team can play well and salvage the sporting day. A great case in point would be the 1995 October day, when Washington coughed up a heartbreaker to Notre Dame 29-20. As everyone else was inside Hec Ed Pavilion licking their wounds during the Fifth Quarter party, I sat alone out by the tennis courts. I had a Walkman on and was listening to the Mariners, and despaired as Paul O'Neil homered and the New York Yankees led 5-0 in the fifth inning. If the Mariners had lost that game, their season would been finished.

However, by the time we had gotten home, we saw Edgar hit the grand slam off of John Wetteland, and the Mariners lived to play another day. The sporting anguish wreaked by the Notre Dame loss had been counterbalanced by the historic and dramatic win over the Yankees. The two Seattle teams had worked in tandem.

We Seattleites weren't so fortunate yesterday. Perhaps next Saturday, with any luck at all, both of them can try it again.

Now for some random thoughts regarding the loss to UCLA:

I was very proud of the tough efforts demonstrated by Willie Hurst, Taylor Barton, Paul Arnold, Larry Triplett, Todd Elstrom and Omare Lowe. Speaking of Lowe, his never-say-die effort to make that tackle on the one-foot line, almost became the stuff of legend. Lowe is doing all of this with an incredibly painful shoulder injury, mind you. On the very next play, UCLA incredibly coughed up the ball and Washington recovered.

The problem with that play was that the Dawgs were flagged for having too many men on the field. It was the equivalent of walking through the front yard and stepping on a rake. UCLA took their second chance and scored easily to kill any Husky momentum that was building.

UCLA is the best team I have seen in awhile. This is in light of all their fumbles and bobbles, and yet they still dominated us. I had predicted that UCLA would win 34-24, but I never really thought that we would be completely dominated. I saw how we struggled to run against California, as the Bears utilized all kinds of blitzes and stunts. The following week against USC, the Trojans defense played us very much straight up, and we went right at them and had success on the ground. It stood to reason that UCLA would see that on film, and really emphasize it, and they did.

Who would think it possible that Rich Alexis would rush for MINUS 14 yards? This was not his fault either - it just wasn't there. He was completely engulfed as he took each handoff. Anyway, from this, now we know how everyone felt against Steve Emtman and co. back in ‘91.

And empathy is a good thing, right?

Switching gears, if Bob Toledo wants to set a good example to his players and fans, he should suspend young Mr. Bell for the most disturbing cheap-shot that I have seen in many, many years (on Barton). What the hell was that? Barton was already knocked cleanly to the ground, sitting on his backside for a moment and watching the results of his errant throw into the endzone, before starting to get up when BAM!! The Bruin defender runs up from behind and with both fists blasts them into Barton's helmet. He promptly crumpled to the ground in a heap.

Was Bell trying to kill him? What was that? Even the NHL suspends players for match penalties such as vicious crosschecks. Why not the NCAA? He should be suspended for 1-2 games. Furthermore it should be explained to the team as well the public why it is being done.

Football is of course a game of violence, but there exist written rules of sportsmanship, as well unwritten rules of honor. This is not the WWF. This is college football. It was very disturbing and disheartening to witness.

We all love John Anderson, and that will never stop, but one of these days one of those missed extra points are going to cost us dearly. It is amazing that he can thunder-kick 56-yard field goals with great accuracy, yet on extra points the ball seems to be moving around on him. Hopefully it's just a case of a golfer with the "yips" that will go away shortly.

OK. Black Saturday is behind us. Washington will look to rebound against a very beat up Arizona squad. It will be "Bear Down" (Arizona's battle cry) vs. "Bow Down", and it will be fun to see Washington rebound like we all know they can.

And hopefully our beloved Mariners will be battling in the ALCS, making for a much better weekend.
Derek Johnson can be reached at djohnson@dawgman.com.

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