QUEST FOR A CHAMPIONSHIP
Filled with Clichés!
A Top Ten List!
By Race Bannon
As August winds down with nothing other than baseball or exhibition pro football, we turn to the tried and true Top Ten list in order to meet our requirement to provide an issue weekly in order to justify the massive salary I get paid thanks to the donations of suckers like you.
TOP TEN SEASON OPENERS
1. 1970 MICHIGAN STATE
The Huskies were coming off of a 1-9 season and everyone hated Jim Owens which is why there is a statue of him outside Husky Stadium. The team had been wracked by racial unrest and racism. Before the 1-9 season Owens had reeled off a Sark like string of 6-4 records. The natives were restless. Swaye told me this.
A phenom had been discovered in the spring Varsity Alumni game - a diminutive signal caller from Ashland Oregon named Sonny Sixkiller.
The Huskies had opened the 69 season with three losses to Michigan, Michigan State, and Ohio State. They may have sucked but they weren't pussies like we are now. The 1970 opener against Michigan State would be a measuring stick game.
The Spartans were only a couple years removed from the famous 10-10 tie with Notre Dame. The Huskies came out in front of a full house and kicked the shit out of Sparty 42-16. The city was on fire. The Huskies were BACK.
They would go on to lose to Michigan the next week and Cal, Stanford, and USC in conference. They did have a rare win over Navy that year. It would set the tone for the Sixkiller era which was a Sark like beat up on bad teams and lose to the good teams era.
2. 2009 LSU
The Huskies were coming off of a 0-12 season and everyone hated Ty Willingham which is why he will soon have a statue outside Husky Stadium. The team had been wracked by a lack of talent and desire. Before the 0-12 season Ty had reeled off a Ty like string of horseshit seasons. The natives had given up. Swaye told me so in a peyote vision.
Young Steve Sarkisian had been hired from Brazzers University to rebuild the once proud Black, Tan, White, and occasional Gold Huskies. Long time Husky scribe Race Bannon described how a tear ran down his cheek watching the DAWGS roll down the field on their first possession to a touchdown. The crowd rose as one at the end of the game to give the DAWGS a standing ovation for losing the game. The team would go on to upset 3rd ranked USC and finish 6-7. Sark would improve the team to 7-6 for the remainder of his time at Washington.
Fans had no idea of the damage that Rick had done.
8. 1978 UCLA
The DAWGS were coming off the epic Rose Bowl win over Michigan after the 1977 season and there was much anticipation in the air.
What makes this game unique was that it was the ABC national TV game in prime time on the East Coast. Back then, kids, if you weren't on ABC you weren't on TV. To get the prime time opener was a sign of how much ABC values the Los Angeles market.
Washington was horrible on offense and special teams. Great on defense. UCLA needed a blocked punt by Kenny Easley to win the game.
The season would continue to be disappointing as a 7-4 record was not enough to get a bowl game back then. I would have fired Don James. However, the next year the DAWGS would be 10-2 with a win over Texas in the Sun Bowl then go to two straight Rose Bowls.
7. 1986 Ohio State
Washington crushed the Buckeyes in the opener which signaled new hope after a disappointing 1985 campaign. Alas the Huskies remained mired in the mid 80's slump and got boat raced by Bama in the Sun Bowl. But it is always fun to crush the Buckeyes and the fans were on fire.
6. 2010 BYU
The season ended after a stupid loss at BYU and that was made clear in a drunk pod cast following the game. We had said before the game that if Sark was any good this was the kind of game you win and if he didn't the season was over.
The season being over started as a slam on Kim and the Doogs always saying the next season or the season after that would be special even before the season at hand at begun. Calling the season over after this game immortalized the saying and then there was the drunk podcast too. Good times, shitty coach.
Oddly enough the season ended with a legendary Holiday Bowl win over Nebraska after which I famously proclaimed that if Sark was the coach this is what it would look like.
5. 1985 Oklahoma State
The Huskies were coming off of a national championship and were facing Oklahoma State in a rare at that time night game at Husky Stadium. Anticipation was high.
Then Thurman Thomas ran all over the DAWGS and the Cowboys won rather easily setting the tone for a horrible season that included the biggest upset by point spread in history - the legendary Oregon State game. Hugh Millen. Enough said on that.
4. 2008 Oregon
Where do we begin on this one? So much came from this game, most of it horrible but some of it funny that endures to this day.
This was the 5 Reasons game. This was the game that doogs point to as when they stopped believing in Ty. This was a game we were to win rather easily.
We had only lost 4 straight to Oregon at this point and we were going to set the score straight with our wunderkind Jack Lockner. We got crushed 44-10 and used that momentum to go 0-12.
3. 2002 Michigan
This was one of three games coached by Rick Neuheisel that led to the final destruction of the old Husky Football. The other two were losing to Cal at home in 2002 and the 01 trip to Miami. Washington fans still cared back then and those three losses led the idiots in charge to trump up some charges on Rick to fire him in June and kill the program.
The famous 4-4-4 defense gave Michigan a second shot at the game winning field goal and they did not fail again. Despite all the coaching gaffes that would follow by the clown car parade of coaches post Rick, this stands alone as the play that made Husky fans livid.
When Rick was fired in June the first revolution started at Dawgman. Those of us with half a brain headed for the jungle while the Section14A fucking stupid fans dreamed of Gilby asking the right questions and bringing back TUFF Husky football. The second revolution was after 08 Oregon. The third was when Sark was obviously a fraud unless you were KimG fucking stupid.
This list is getting depressing.
2. 1993 Stanford
Don James retired, quit, was fired, resigned a few weeks before this season after the Administration sold out to the Pac 9 and hit our DAWGS with major sanctions. Bill Walsh was coaching Stanford at the time and was caught giving some academis smack to Stanford boosters (both of them) before the game.
Let's just say there has never been a more emotional game at Husky Stadium unless you were a Buff in 1989. Don and Carol waved from the press box. Lambo led the DAWGS out of the tunnel arm in arm. The place exploded. Walsh came out and the place almost fell down on top of him.
The smarmy fuck feared for his life.
People forget that Stanford had tied UW for the Pac 10 in 1992 and were a favorite for 1993. But they had not beat UW since 1982 and that didn't change that day. After the big loss Stanford would not be heard from again until Ty won multiple Rose Bowls there.
1. 1991 Stanford
Everyone knew this was our year. Even though Billy Joe would be our quarterback. Most found that an issue, I found it to be the missing piece. Bob Whitfield, the giant tackle for Stanford said before the game that they would ruin the season for our DAWGS.
I was there at cavernous Stanford Stadium that day with thousands of DAWG fans as we kicked off the National Championship season with yet another beat down of Stanford. One of my favorite road trips. We stayed at a mid century motor lodge with two pools in the courtyard and an open pool party among all the DAWG fans staying there.
Dennis Green was head coach at Stanford and after the game said, "if you want to crown their ass then CROWN THEM!"
Washington 63, Rutgers 12