DUCKFIGHTER ILLUSTRATED

<B>IN THIS ISSUE:</B><ul> <li>High expectations, low yield for Huskies<br> <li>From the penthouse to the outhouse for the Ducks<br> <li>Cougs do the Trifecta, lose coach, Apple Cup, and Rose Bowl<br> <li>Beavers crush Ducks in Civil War</ul>


FINAL NORTHWEST CUP STANDINGS
1 – Washington Huskies
2 – Washington State Cougars
3 – Oregon State Beavers
4 – Boise State Broncos
5 – Oregon Ducks

PRE-PRE-SEASON NW STANDINGS FOR '03
1 – Boise State Broncos – they don't rebuild, they reload
2 – Oregon State Beavers – You expected the Huskies? Humility our watchword
3 – Washington Huskies – not that humble
4 – Alabama Crimson Cougars – Price still can't beat the Huskies
5 – Washington State Tide – Doba era off to rocky start
8 – Oregon Ducks – 8th place. That sounds familiar. Yes, they're back.
12 men, bad calls, shocking losses, and urine filled bottles – the 2002 Washington Huskies
Race Bannon

The Washington Huskies opened the 2002 football season at 9AM Pacific Time on August 31, from the legendary Big House in Ann Arbor Michigan. The Huskies were hindered from the start by the early hour, as Husky fans found it hard to slam alcohol at that hour. Wise fans just kept drinking from the night before.

All of the ills that would plague our heroes throughout the season were present against Michigan. The Huskies fell behind 14-0, fought back in the game to take the lead, and then couldn't get out of their own way to close the deal. It never should have come down to blown calls or blundering coaches, but the lack of a killer instinct did indeed haunt our Huskies.

They returned home to listlessly consume the pastry portion of the schedule that seemed to go on forever and ever. Each win made us feel worse about the chances of our squad, as they had trouble running the ball in eleven on zero pre game drills.

The league season got underway with the most shocking loss in 26 years, and then got worse. The Cal Bears, yes the Cal Bears (!) broke a quarter century losing streak against the Huskies by slapping around the suddenly soft Dawgs at Husky Stadium. Bridge jumper watches went up around the Puget Sound area.

By the time the Huskies kicked away a home game to the UCLA junior varsity, it looked like another quarter century streak was done. The Huskies sat at 4-5, with three games left against the northwest rivals, with the Dawgs a dog in each game, two of which would be on the road. The long streak of winning seasons appeared doomed.

The three game stretched turned into a salvation for Head Coach Rick Neuheisel and a desperately needed ray of sunshine for the grumbling faithful at Montlake, who were making short lists of replacement coaches.

First the Beavers pooped off then got knocked off by a shocking resurgence of the long dormant pass defense. Then came a trip to newly remodeled Autzen Arena and an old-fashioned [expletive deleted] kicking of the Ducks, 42-14. Cody Picket and Reggie Williams destroyed the Duck defense, and the revitalized Husky D, led by freshman sensation Nate Robinson debunked the legend of Jason Fife, who realized he wasn't on the schoolyard anymore.

After a routine Apple Cup win, the fifth in a row, and tenth in thirteen years, the Huskies were pelted by bottles at vandal filled Martin Stadium. The classless Cougs fans should be used to losing to the Huskies by now, and their unseemly display of sod busting bottle throwing will not be soon forgotten.

Just when you thought it was safe to be a Husky fan again, they played Purdue in the Sun Bowl. Yeah, let's just forget 2002, except for the stirring northwest run, and start looking ahead to better days in 03. I'll see you at the Spring Game.
The Oregon Report
Mallard N. Moore

(Mr. Moore refused to turn in a report on the Oregon season. He explained that the Husky fans had laughed enough at Oregon all year, and a review of the humiliating collapse would only serve to entertain Husky fans even more. Instead, Mr. Moore turned in the following rough draft of the novel he is writing. A copy has been sent to the Pulitzer committee.)

The Western University Waterfowl football team had a long history that swung between mild success and major failure. Located in a backwater of America, the Fowl had a tough time competing in the no holds barred world of major college football.

What made matters worse for the fans and boosters of the Waterfowl was the long time success of their neighbors, The University of The Northwest Titans. Fans of the Titans had long kicked sand in the face of the Fowl supporters, and held an overwhelming record of superiority on the field and off.

Just when it looked like there might be a light at the end of the tunnel, it turned into an oncoming train. Former coach Dick Rivers led Western U to its one and only Petulia Bowl win, and then headed out of town on the first train, with 5 million dollars of Athletic Department funds.

The Waterfowl quickly hired offensive genius, Jim Blotty to take over the helm of the ship. Blotty vowed to slay the evil empire of the Northwest and set about planning the rise of the Western U program.

Mallard N. Moore leaned against the bar with a girl under each arm and a drink in each hand, with a line of coke for each nostril. Moore is the legendary beat writer for the Waterfowl, and has been there from the tough times to the start of the amazing resurgence of the once downtrodden team. Mallard could look through the smoky haze across the room and see the reason why.

Bill Day liked worldwide monopolies, cheap labor and winning football teams. Day liked to get what he wanted, and was stuck on two out of three until he joined up with Coach Blotty to institute the plan to revitalize the Western U football program. Bill Day was looking across to the other side of the room where his master plan of empire building in college football was at work.

Jamal Rashid Mohammed Jones was a Mormon from Salt Lake City High. Jamal was also 6' 5" and 280 pounds with a time of 4.35 in the 40. Jamal was chatting with Xavier Hollander, the recruiting coordinator for Western University. Also in the group was the coaches wife, who was talking to Jamal about her recent conversion to the Mormon faith, and four or five of Xavier's hostesses, ready to show Jamal what Western U had to offer a young man. The Waterfowl's real estate consultant, who explained the ins and outs of student housing and ticket distribution, joined them.

A total experience is offered to the young men who are considering Western U for the next four years.

Day started working his way over to the group, stopping along the way to pick up current Western U star, Calgary Jones, who was granted a special work release pass just for the occasion. Some fans had grumbled when the Waterfowl started recruiting a different kind of athlete, but the grumbles turned to cheers as the arrogant Titans started going down to defeat against the Waterfowl.

As they approached Jamal, Day started loudly discussing the endorsements opportunities available to college stars like Jones, after his graduation, or his eligibility was gone. Jamal listened briefly until he was distracted by ........[the rest of this story is unfit for a family website]
Doba era begins at Washington State
Firemikeprice.com

The Cougars lost the Apple Cup, got blown out in the Rose Bowl and lost their coach. The only thing unusual about these developments was the Rose Bowl being 62 years early. Other than that, it was pretty much business as usual in the Palouse, where losing is an art form, not just a way of life.
Beavers rebound, crush Ducks in Civil War
Benny B. Eaver

The Beavers talked themselves out of a few wins, but were awesome against the lightweights on their schedule such as Eastern Kentucky, Temple, and Oregon. They had more trouble against the better teams, but did manage to make the Insight Bowl as a post-season reward.

Derek Anderson learned the hard way how tough it is to be a major college quarterback, but the growing pains he took this year are expected to enable him to lead the Beavers to the conference crown in 2003.

OSU crushed the Ducks in the Civil War and has now won two out of three games over the crumbling dynasty in Eugene.
And Lastly….Well, it really wasn't much of a year in the Northwest. Despite experts across this land agreeing that the power of the Pac 10 was in the north, the evidence on the field showed a familiar going south feel. All four squads have plenty to prove, and we'll get our first look at the New Year in our Recruiting Spectacular, where we will catalog all 100 of the Top 100 players that committed to USC. Until then, we thank you for reading – Race
Race Bannon can be reached at duckfighter@dawgman.com, or if you see him still at the bar from the dawgman.com banquet last Friday evening, tell him to come home.

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