Victory the cry of Washington
After a nearly two year trip through the desert of losing the Washington Huskies found an oasis of victory near Tucson at Bear Down Stadium Saturday night, 38-14 over Willie T and the Wildcats.
Tyrone Willingham, Isaiah Stanback, and Craig Chambers are the big three talents that the Huskies have relied on to come back from the depths of hell. They have been maddeningly inconsistent as they have borne the brunt of fan anger as the promised return of the Dawgs slogged through loss after loss this year. After a shaky start that saw Stanback throw a pick and Chambers drop an easy pass, and the team looking like they were still un coached, our Big Three got on the same page and launched the play that may just restore the roar at Montlake for years to come.
The Huskies got the ball at the end of the first half with about a minute left and proceeded to stumble and bumble with clock management and field execution that had our play by play men laughing out loud and fans preparing their message board posts about how clueless our QB and coach are yet again. Then, after taking a sack, Stanback called a time out with 7 seconds left in the half at his own 31 yard line. Why would he take a time out when he should just let the time run out? Doesn't he know anything about football? The Husky coaches told him to take a knee. Washington had out gained Arizona and pushed them all over the field, yet trailed by 7 points. Go into half and re group and try to make it happen in the second half.
But Isaiah would have none of that. With shades of Billy Joe Hobart telling Don James "no shit coach" when DJ told him he had to make that 4th down conversion at Nebraska in 1991, Stanback said he could make the throw.
Many Husky players and certainly the Arizona players and coaches thought the half was over. U of A didn't even bother to play a 4 deep zone at the goal line knowing that there was no way Stanback would throw it 75 yards in the air.
He didn't, as the ball came down into the waiting arms of Craig Chambers at the two yard line and Chambers skipped onto the end zone and pandemonium broke out all over the Husky nation. 73 yards in the air by the would be wide out and nobody will ever question him as a quarterback again.
This grizzled, cynical scribe felt tears listening to the call and knew instinctively that the worm had turned and our Purple clad heroes would once again carve their name in the hall of fame.
It was a night of vindication for the maligned among the team and staff.
James Simms erased the memory of some untimely fumbles and rushed for 200 yards.
Stanback ran hard for 95 yards and two touchdowns.
Kent Baer and his maligned defense shut down the Pac 10's latest star and made him look like the freshman he is.
Coach Willingham got his players to believe and to win it the way he drew it up, by running the ball and stopping the run.
The defensive backs were alert and opportunistic.
The front 7 got pressure all night.
Bow Down To Washington. Mighty are the men who wear the purple and the gold.
A relieved Todd Turner commented that he hoped this would stop a certain columnist from ripping him every week. Let's not go overboard, Todd.
Ducks survive Palouse Duck hunt
Mallard N. Moore
It really is remarkable how well the WSU Wimps can play football at times. Just not at the times when they need to. A Pac 10 win remained an elusive quest for the Crimson clad dirt farmers, as the BCS bound Oregon Ducks kicked a late field goal to escape with their 9th win in 10 tries this year.
Brady Leaf and Dennis Dixon shared time at the helm as the Duck's offense didn't skip a beat in replacing Kelly Clemmons. Look for a national championship run next year.
This year the Ducks will wrap the regular season with the semi annual Civil War win at Autzen. Sweet revenge waits for the 50 point beat down laid on them by OSU last year.
OSU quarterback Matt Moore is unlikely to play as he was hurt in the Beavers home loss to the Stanford Giants. The Beavers were unable to force overtime as field goal kicker Alex Cerna was suffering from exhaustion after his game in Seattle and missed a 50 yarder as time ran out.
The Ducks only need about 8 teams to lose and they can get a rematch against USC in the Rose Bowl.
Prediction: Oregon – 38, OSU – 18
Apple Cup Preview
This was supposed to be a match up of winless conference teams but only WSU was able to keep their perfect league record intact for this epic match up. The last time these teams met in Seattle, Cody Picket closed out his career with a legendary toss to Corey Williams to upset the top 10 ranked Cougars and send Jim Waldon on another extended bender.
Last year the Wimps broke a 7 year losing streak by barely beating the worst Husky team in school history. Isaiah Stanback was put in the game too late, but showed a glimpse of the future as he and Craig Chambers lit up the Wimps.
WSU will be desperate to win and Jerome Harrison will be a severe test to the Husky run defense, while Jason Hill will stress the Husky secondary. The Huskies have to guard against being satisfied with one win in the league this year.
Look for form to hold and for class to tell as the superior Husky forces keep the Wimps alone in the basement for 05. How does a winless league season feel Coug fans?
Wait……………I think I know the answer to that.
UW – 28, WSU – 24
USC beat up Cal 35-10 as Pete Carroll put further distance between the Trojans and the rest of the Pac…Cal and Stanford meet with the Giants needing to win to get bowl eligible…Look for the Giants to shock the Bears…Steve Superior led South Carolina to their first win over Florida since 1939…the Gamecocks could play for the SEC title if Georgia keeps fading…LSU ended Bama's dreams…Auburn shocked the other Dawgs late…Penn State can wrap up the Big 11 title with a win over the collapsing Spartans….How did they beat Notre Dame…Texas hung 66 on Kansas, Dorothy…the Olympia Bears are unbeaten and headed to a state title…thank you Husky players and coaches…in the words of Ronnie Lott – damn it feels good doesn't it?
Thanks for reading and on to many more victories! - Race
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