I think we can agree that eight months ago, this was a team that would have LOST to Idaho. It was a team with no confidence, no faith in their system, no faith in their coach's plan, and just plain no interest in competing.
It was a team that deserved every bit of 0-12.
After a season like that, a whole new philosophy had to be injected in every phase of the team. From the attitude, to the physicalness, to the mentalnes, to the schemes, to the way they conducted meetings, even the way they brushed their teeth in the morning. Everything.
That's a whole bunch of rebuilding to do.
Now look what's going on. So what if they don't have a pass rush - yet. So what if the DBs are playing softer until they are confident in what they must do in those areas. So what if there are still some "hangovers of losing" like penalties and short kickoffs and a drop or two.
What I see is a transformed team. One that is still learning, still yearning, and hungry to move forward. Yes, they might be 22-point underdogs next week, but I'll bet a dollar to a donut they can't WAIT to kick it off next Saturday.
That's the biggest difference I see in the team right now. Last year's team would have dreaded facing USC. This year's team is licking their chops to get it on, no matter what happens.
Hat's off to you, Sark and staff. And hats off to our Dawgs. The face lift they needed is working. And it isn't being done with mirrors, mantras, or Mephisto's waltz.
It's being done with hard work, faith, and togetherness.
They're still gonna have some growing pains, to be sure. But you can feel it. It's on its way back. Indeed, the Monster on Montlake is on its way back.
The PAC-10 will no longer have a patsy to poop on in Seattle. They can return that little duty where it belongs - in Eugene and on the Palouse.