"The Assyrian came down like the wolf on the fold, And his cohorts were gleaming in purple and gold" - excerpt from The Destruction of Sennacherib by Lord Byron.
Franchise Infidels, prepare for war. It is time to pick up our arms that we laid aside in 2009. It is time to melt our plowshares and reforge our swords. In the late years of the two thousand aughts a war was fought on the free board of dawgman.com (RIP). The forces of good (dubbed the Negas by the evil Typoligists), lead by the charismatic Race Bannon rallied day after day, posting several tomes worth of facts decrying the tyrannical reign of Tyrone Willingham (aka HWMNBN, Lionel, Try Losingham, etc). Race and his minions organized a rebellion from an internet message board that toppled a regime (which later inspired revolutions in Tunisia, Libya, Yemen, and Egypt). Largely facilitated by the great efforts of General TDNC firetoddturner.com was able to take down the foundations of Willingham Empire, even if Tard Turner was able successfully martyr himself to enable Willingham's magical 0-12 season. Unfortunately the replacement for DH Turner was not up to snuff but we have proven that an AD is held accountable for his front man's actions. Scott Woodward needs to be made aware that there are two choices - he fires Sarkisian or he gets fired so we can get rid of Sarkisian.
As Winston Churchill said, "When the war of the giants is over the wars of the pygmies will begin." Churchill was talking about how once WWII ended that there would be squabbles over the remains and that is a valid metaphor for where we stand today. The giants (Leach, Shaw, Helfrich, Graham) won and now the pygmies (us) fight for the football program. The stage has been set where Sark is vulnerable. No matter how right we have been for however long we've been right, Sark was not going to be fired until now. It has been proven now that he can not show any substantial progress this season. Really he can't show ANY progress but again, that is hard for some people to see. Even doogs are turning on Sark now and when the group think begins to crack over there it is time for us to make sure everything fractures apart. So what can we do? First and foremost is continuing to indoctrinate our confused brethren. While they have remained impervious facts for years, they are beginning to open their eyes. The ASU plungering is much harder for them to justify than the moral victory over the loser of the Utah-Stanford game and the mighty duckade. That has to be a key. Reminding them that we were manhandled by a team with mediocre run defense (68 in the country when you discount our abysmal performance against them that helped pad their stats) so thoroughly that Bishop Sankey was held to 22 yards will help demonstrate that the wheels really are coming off. Even if Sark's excuse about the heat is accurate that is a huge indictment against his program that in year 5 players are so unconditioned they can't compete against their Pac-12 foes. It's not like they didn't know ASU was on the schedule. Of course posting information here is great but ultimately then we only add sheep to our flock if they wander here on their own. Softy's facebook page, going undercover at doogman, the Seattle Times - these are the venues where real outreach can be done. We are probably not at the stage of printing tshirts yet (I literally gave those out as gifts - even sent one to a buddy in Kazakhstan) but mass mailing campaigns are essential. Getting fans to see that Sark is not the guy is fine and dandy but that is a just part of a means to an end - it is not our goal and it is insufficient to achieve our goal. We have to also take our efforts to the AD and president. As noted before it needs to be made clear to Woodward and Young that our current football coach is an embarrassment to the university and is not worthy of support. I doubt many of us here hate money so much that we want to throw it away in support of a product that is the opposite of what we want. Writing letters, sending emails, making phone calls - these are our current steps. More dramatic gestures like returning your tickets are great but I know they are hard to do. I didn't watch ASU and I won't watch Cal, but I'm still showing up for the Apple Cup even if I have to wear a paper bag on my head. That being said I do donate a small amount to the University of Washington and I think I will give the University of Washington's allotment to my other alma mater this year (Wisconsin). In the end money talks and if our threats of abandoning the program are insufficient then we simply must abandon the program. Punishing bad behavior (e.g. not firing Sarkisian) and rewarding good behavior (e.g. hiring Mora) is how we will get the football program we demand. I want an impressive front porch dammit.
That being said there has been a lot of talk about future coaches and Gladstone had a solid post highlighting a lot of the top candidates I am aware of. Since I won't have much to say about the Cal game next week I may focus more on coaches when I ramble next week. I will say though that Tim DeRuyter at Fresno State and Jim Mora at UCLA are my top who choices and it may be in that order, at least from a rational standpoint. I am very interested to see how UCLA finishes the season. That being said I know in my heart that I want Mora at this point - I want to have been right for so long - unlike many alum hires I think he is objectively good - and he likes pie better than cake. As a reminder to everyone pie day is November 19th. I have already started scouting out which places in Westwood serve the best pie so that Coach Mora can get the birthday treat he wants and deserves. This may be verging on a level of creepy that even I am uncomfortable with so I am going to leave this here...
Finally, this would be incomplete without a mention of Coach James. I don't want to go on and make a parody of this like so many other things but I will provide a few quotes from Don James. The first I found in Husky Football in the Don James Era by Derek Johnson from Don James' introduction press conference. "There are eight or ten teams with an opportunity to b a national champion. Obviously, there are eighteen teams with an opportunity to get into the Rose Bowl. In the Big Ten there are probably two or three with a real chance, maybe the same way in the Pac-8. I think we're one of them. I think we have a great university and a great facility and we've been there before. People in my profession think that this is a school where you can accomplish anything you want in coaching, that you can become a national champion." The second set of quotes come from James By Coach Don James as told by Virgil Parker. "I try to prepare our team on a tight, regimented, disciplined schedule and in an organized way - and attempt to kep my emotions under control." "I hope I'm more 'regular' and 'human' than some fans - and even some of my players - imagine me to be." I think these some things up. James knew how good things were here. He did things the right way - with hard work and determination - and he was a human. He was a good human. I hope our next coach can be as devoted to this university, as devoted to all the people associated with this university, and as devoted to excellence as Coach James.
Evens & Ends
There was one poster on dmc who announced Sark was going to be our next HC a few days before it happened. He was on nobody's watch/want list so he was shouted down (by staff and customers alike) but in the end he was right. I wish I could remember who the only insider on that site was. Miami just got a pat on the back from the NCAA. Allioti apologized to Leach. I assume Leach dgaf. Right now it looks like Oregon, Oregon State or Stanford will represent the North while Arizona State or UCLA will represent the South in the Pac-12 title game. Looking forward to the Oregon-UCLA rematch. Oregon should cake walk through that one again en route to demolishing tOSU before squaring off against Alabama. New Mexico State, Western Michigan, and Miami (Ohio) still don't have any wins this year. I expect Woody is scrambling to try and get them on our schedule as soon as possible. There are some nice match ups this coming week but nothing compelling to watch. Might be a good day to go enjoy a crisp fall afternoon with nothing going on.