Sept. 22, 2008
The Game: The Washington football team wraps up its September in Seattle this Saturday night at Husky Stadium when Stanford (2-2 overall, 1-1 in the Pac-10) visits Montlake for a 7:00 p.m. game. The Huskies (0-3 overall, 0-1 in the Pac-10) are coming off of a bye week after a brutal three-game stretch to open the season. The Dawgs opened with a loss at then-No. 21 Oregon before falling at home to No. 15 BYU and No. 3 Oklahoma. After this Saturday's game vs. the Cardinal, the Dawgs finally return to the road for a date at Arizona Oct. 4 in Tucson. Oregon State comes to Husky Stadium the following Saturday before another off week for the Dawgs.
Huskies vs. Cardinal History: Washington holds a relatively close 40-34-4 advantage in the series against Stanford, but has been the dominant team lately. After winning eight straight vs. Stanford from 1959 to 1966, the Huskies lost 10 in a row from 1967 to 1976. Since that 1976 loss, Washington has gone 21-4 against the Cardinal. One of those four losses was a big upset in 1982 when the No. 2 Huskies fell to the Cardinal, 43-31, in Palo Alto. The second UW loss during that stretch came at Stanford in 1994, when the Cardinal upset 12th-ranked Washington, 46-28. More recently, the Cardinal beat the Huskies, 27-13, at Palo Alto in 2004. After no game in 2005, Stanford won its second straight over the UW in a 20-3 victory in 2006 at Husky Stadium. Last season in Palo Alto, however, the Huskies rushed for a total of 388 yards in a 27-9 win over the Cardinal. Louis Rankin led the way with 255 yards on 36 carries. Over the last 10 seasons, the two old league rivals have not played one other four times (1998, 1999, 2002 and 2005). Washington and Stanford first played one another in 1893 in a game that marked the first major college opponent for UW. That game, played in West Seattle, resulted in a 40-0 Stanford victory. There wouldn't be another matchup between the two schools until 1920, when the Cardinal nipped Washington, 3-0, in the last UW home game played somewhere other than Husky Stadium. Three weeks after that game, the UW would open what would eventually come to be known as Husky Stadium. After a 0-0 tie in 1921, the Huskies' first victory in the series came in 1922, 12-8 at Palo Alto. Husky head coach Tyrone Willingham, who spent seven years as the head coach at Stanford, is 4-1 vs. the Cardinal. Three wins came as Notre Dame's head coach while his one loss was in 2007. Willingham and Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh first faced each other as head coaches in last season's game, meaning that Willingham is 1-0 in the head-to-head matchup.
Huskies vs. Bay Area Schools: Washington has a combined, all-time record of 99-72-8 vs. opponents from the San Francisco Bay Area. Washington is 47-37-4 against Cal, 40-34-4 vs. Stanford, 10-0 vs. San Jose State, 1-1 vs. St. Mary's and 1-0 vs. Santa Clara. The Huskies haven't played Santa Clara since 1935 and St. Mary's since 1947. Since 1977, UW is 49-8-0 vs. Bay Area teams: 20-4 vs. Cal, 21-4 vs. Stanford and 8-0 vs. San Jose State.
Television: The Washington-Stanford will air live on to a regional audience on FSN television with Kevin Calabro, former Seahawks fullback Mack Strong and Nicole Zaloumis providing the commentary. Additionally, "Huskies All-Access" airs Thursday evening on FSN. The program is an up-close look at each Husky game, with features, one-on-one interviews and sideline video.
Radio: The Washington ISP Sports Network, with its flagship station KJR 950-AM, will carry the live broadcast of every football game to three different states and British Columbia, Canada, on 21 different radio stations. Longtime play-by-play man Bob Rondeau and color analyst Chuck Nelson are joined by sideline reporter Elise Woodward. Many game broadcasts will also be carried on XM Satellite Radio on channel 194, 195 or 196 and can be heard over the internet via the Dawg Channel at gohuskies.com.
Washington-Stanford Ties: Clearly, the most obvious connection between the UW and Stanford coaching staffs and rosters is the fact that Husky head coach Tyrone Willingham spent seven seasons (1995-2001) as the Cardinal's head coach. He also had previously worked three years (1989-91) on the Stanford staff as running backs coach. Only one remaining Husky assistant coach who worked under Willingham at Stanford remains: offensive line coach Mike Denbrock. Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh hasn't ever spent time on the same team or staff as any Husky coach, but his time as Michigan quarterback did overlap with Willingham and assistant coach Charlie Baggett's tenures as assistant coaches at Michigan State, which is also Willingham and Baggett's alma mater. The only Stanford assistant who has ever worked with a current member of the UW staff is D.J. Durkin (defensive ends/special teams). He was a grad assistant at Notre Dame in 2003 and 2004, working on Willingham's staff. Additionally, two Cardinal assistants - Chris Dalman and David Shaw - played at Stanford during Willingham's tenure as running backs coach under Denny Green. Dalman was also on Jim Mora's coaching staff with the Atlanta Falcons along with Husky defensive coordinator Ed Donatell. Stanford co-defensive coordinator Ron Lynn and Husky offensive coordinator Tim Lappano were both on Dennis Erickson's San Francisco 49ers staff in 2004. There are three Washingtonians on the current Stanford roster: freshman OL David DeCastro (Bellevue), senior QB Tavita Pritchard (Tacoma/Clover Park) and junior WR Marcus Rance (Yakima/Davis). Washington's roster includes numerous Californians, but only nine from Northern California: Donald Butler (Sacramento), Allen Carroll (Oakland), Terrance Dailey (Vacaville), Mason Foster (Seaside), Willie Griffin (Oakland) and De'Shon Matthews (Sacramento). Only a few Huskies attended the same high school as any Cardinal players. DeCastro went to Bellevue High with Husky long snapper Brendan Lopez. UW sophomore DB Matt Mosley and Stanford OT Allen Smith and CB Blaise Johnson all graduated from Tempe's Corona del Sol, while Husky long snapper Danny Morovick and Stanford kicker David Green, tight end Konrad Reuland and wide receiver Warren Reuland all went to Mission Viejo High. Lastly, Stanford receiver Richard Sherman and Husky TB Brandon Johnson both went to L.A.'s Dominguez High while UW linebacker Kurt Mangum and Cardinal safety Harold Bernard and cornerback Quinn Evans were all classmates at Arizona's Chandler HS last year.
Playing The Freshmen: A total of eight true freshman saw action in the Huskies' season opener at Oregon: Devin Aguilar, Jermaine Kearse, Senio Kelemete, Kavario Middleton, Chris Polk, Jordan Polk, Alameda Ta'amu, Everrette Thompson. In the BYU game, freshman tailback David Freeman made his debut, and vs. Oklahoma, Johri Fogerson started at safety, increasing the total to 10 true freshmen who have played for the Dawgs this season. That surpasses the total of seven that saw action in the 2007 season. In 2006, only two true freshmen played. In the Oregon game, two freshman (C. Polk at tailback and Middleton at tight end) started the game. Additionally, Jordan Polk was on the field for the start of the game as a kickoff returner and Kelemete was listed as a starter, but the UW opened in a nickel defense, so he wasn't on the field for the first play and therefore did not officially start the game. Chris Polk, Kelemete and Middleton all started vs. Brigham Young while, vs. Oklahoma, Freeman, Fogerson, Aguilar, Kearse and Kelemete all started.
September In Seattle: With three home games and an off week during the month, the Huskies will spend their entire September at home in Seattle this year. The Dawgs opened Aug. 30 in Eugene, Ore., and won't return to the road until Oct. 4 at Arizona. With the bye week, that's four straight Saturdays at home. Somewhat surprisingly, that's not as unusual as you might think. In 2003, the UW opened on Aug. 30 at Ohio State and, just like this year, had three home games and an off week before playing on Oct. 4 at UCLA. In 2002, the Dawgs played FIVE consecutive home games (with an off week) after opening at Michigan on Aug. 31. That UW team didn't return to the road until Oct. 19. The Huskies also spent four straight Saturdays in October at home (all games; no off weeks) in 1998, just to name one other somewhat recent example.
Captains: Washington does not have season-long captains as Coach Tyrone Willingham will name game captains each week. Each game's set of captains are informed of the honor the Friday night before each game and revealed to the fans, etc., when those four designated players take the field for the coin flip prior to each game. Here are this year's game captains:
Oregon: Donald Butler, Juan Garcia, Jake Locker, Daniel Te'o-Nesheim
BYU: Juan Garcia, Paul Homer, Chris Stevens, Trenton Tuiasosopo
Oklahoma: Luke Kravitz, Jake Locker, Mesphin Forrester, Daniel Te'o-Nesheim
Only the Big Boys: As of last season, Washington is one of just five NCAA Division I-A programs that has never faced a non-Division I-A opponent since the current division setup was established in 1978 (the division's names have undergone a change this year, but the setup is still the same). Both Michigan and Ohio State fell of the club as the Wolverines opened last season with Appalachian State and the Buckeyes vs. Youngstown State, both on the same day. The five schools that have yet to play a non-Division I-A opponent since the advent of the current format are Michigan State, Notre Dame, USC, UCLA and Washington.
Playing at Home: Washington has gone unbeaten at home 13 times in its history, including six times in the last 19 seasons. Washington has won 79 of its last 115 (.691) games at Husky Stadium with one tie (79-35-1). Since 1980, the Huskies stand 127-46-2 (.731) at home. Since 1990, the Huskies are 49-25-1 (.660) at Husky Stadium vs. Pac-10 opponents.
Historic Husky Stadium: The 2008 season marks the 89th season of play in Husky Stadium. Original construction on the facility was completed in 1920 when Washington played one game in the new campus facility. Thanks to several major renovations, Husky Stadium's seating capacity has increased to its current total of 72,500. UW's all-time record in Husky Stadium currently stands at 344-158-21 (.678).
Family Ties: As is the case with most seasons of Husky football, there are a number of players on the Washington football team related to either current or former Huskies. Linebacker Trenton Tuiasosopo is a first cousin of former Huskies Marques and Zach Tuiasosopo as well as older sister, Leslie, a standout Husky volleyball player and now an assistant coach for the UW volleyball team, and younger sister Ashley, a sophomore on the Husky softball team. Fullback Luke Kravitz' father Al, was a defensive end that lettered at the UW in 1970 and 1971. Fullback Paul Homer is a cousin, by marriage, of former Husky offensive lineman Aaron Dalan, who married former Washington women's basketball player Gena Pelz. Cornerback Matt Mosley is a cousin to former Husky Luther Carr. Outside linebacker Fred Wiggs is the younger brother of former Husky defensive lineman Sekou Wiggs and, freshmen Chris Polk and Jordan Polk are cousins. Lastly, freshmen Riley Gervais and Taylor Lappano are the sons of current Husky assistant coaches Steve Gervais and Tim Lapanno.