By Derek Johnson
Oddly enough, I felt calm heading into Saturday's UW-Oregon game. The Oregon team that got shellacked last week by Wazzu would be unable to beat the Huskies, even with their A game, I reasoned. Especially since the Ducks would be starting a freshman QB to boot.
I figured a nice 7-10 point win was in the offing. Perhaps a bit more, if things really swung Washington's way.
But I was waylaid by the desecration that occurred. An epic butt kicking. At one point, it even brought a tear to my eye.
Great Husky performances everywhere: JoJo Mcintosh laying people out with thunderous hits. Greg Gaines throwing blockers aside like he was the reincarnation of Steve Emtman. John Ross using his Matrix-like speed and agility to chase down overthrown passes. Dante Pettis making catch after catch. Jake Brownjing throwing a school record six touchdown passes. Myles Gaskin running for tons of yards. Azeem Victor being a beast. On and on it went.
And just like that, twelve years of futility and despair were washed away, like the rainstorm sweeping through the Seattle night as I write this.
Just as wonderful were the things we didn't see. No Husky players doing "The Lawnmower" dance along the sideline, circa the Sark era. No dude brah head coach doing chest bumps with players, or talking afterward about reaching "House Money" status.
No, we saw UW coach Chris Petersen looking - dare I say - perturbed late in the game, when the Huskies were called for a penalty. We saw QB Jake Browning shrug when asked by a gorgeous reporter about his record six TD passes. He didn't do anything special, he said. Just made reads, didn't try to do too much, and did his job.
And that sums up the essence of Husky Football, at least to me. But there were a couple moments that Duck fans will whine about for awhile. There was Jake Browning, crossing the goal line for a touchdown in the first quarter, and pointing his finger in a taunting gesture toward the nearest Duck defender.
And secondly, just when you thought Chris Petersen oozed nothing but Nebraska classiness, he allows a reverse to be called with his team already leading 49-14.
Those were perfect finishing touches and will be good for the rivalry going forward.
When it was all said and done, Duck fans were streaming to the exits, while Husky fans took over Autzen for their own private party. Just like the old days.