Oct. 16, 2006
The Game: The Washington football team (2-2 Pac-10, 4-3 overall) will have a big challenge ahead if it is to break a brief, two-game losing streak. This Saturday, the Dawgs travel to Berkeley's Memorial Stadium to face No. 11 California (4-0, 6-1) in a 12:30 p.m. (PDT) game. The Bears are ranked No. 11 in both the Associated Press and USA Today coaches' polls. The game will air live nationally on FSN. The Huskies are coming off of consecutive losses at No. 3 USC and at home to Oregon State. The Huskies had won three straight prior to the USC game. For the remainder of the season, the Huskies will alternate home and road games each weekend. After the Cal game, the Dawgs return home to play Arizona State before traveling to face Oregon on Nov. 4. After a home game vs. Stanford, the season wraps up with the Apple Cup at Washington State.
Huskies vs. Golden Bears History: Washington and California are the only two teams that have played in what is now the Pacific-10 Conference in every season since the league was founded in 1916. As that would indicate, they've played one another quite often. The Huskies hold a 46-36-4 record in the all-time series, which began in 1904. Prior to Cal victories in each of the last four meetings, the Huskies had won 19 consecutive games in the series, a streak that began with a 50-31 win in 1977. Before 2002, the last Cal win had come in 1976. Over the 19-game streak, the Huskies were ranked at the time of the Cal game 12 times, including playing as the No. 1 team in the country three times vs. the Golden Bears. The Bears were ranked on only three occasions in the streak, but have been ranked each of the last two seasons (No. 16 in 2004, No. 5 in 2005). Cal and UW first met in 1904, battling to a 6-6 tie in a game played in Seattle. In both 1915 and 1916, they played one another twice each year, with unbeaten Gil Dobie's Washington team sweeping the four games. In 1917, Cal broke the UW's 63-game unbeaten streak (still an NCAA record) with a 27-0 win in Berkeley. Other big games in the series include the 1937 game, when the unranked Huskies held No. 1 Cal to a 0-0 tie in Seattle. In 1991, the Bears probably came as close as anyone to beating Washington that national championship season, as Mike Pawlawski's last-gasp pass into the endzone was batted down in a 24-17 UW win. Washington has also posted four of its nine biggest comebacks in history against California. The biggest ever was in 1988, when the Dawgs trailed 27-3 before rallying to win, 28-27. In 1981, Washington was down 21-0 in the third quarter before coming back for a 27-26 victory. A 20-point comeback in 1993 (24-23) and a 14-point rally in 1999 (31-27) also rank on the list. In 2001, the Huskies trailed 21-7 in the first quarter, but came back to earn a 31-28 victory in Berkeley. The Bears, however, have now won four straight against the Huskies. In 2002, the Bears beat the Huskies, 34-27, at Husky Stadium to break the Dawgs' 19-game streak in the series. The following year in Berkeley, Cal routed Washington, 54-7, in the next-to-last game of the season. In 2004, the Bears visited Husky Stadium and left with a 42-12 win. Last season's game, a 56-17 Bears win in Seattle, marked the first head-to-head matchup of Bears coach Jeff Tedford and Tyrone Willingham.
Huskies vs. Bay Area Schools: Washington has a combined, all-time record of 97-70-8 vs. opponents from the San Francisco Bay Area. Washington is 46-36-4 against Cal, 39-33-4 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 47-7-0 vs. Bay Area teams: 19-4 vs. Cal, 20-3 vs. Stanford and 8-0 vs. San Jose State.
Television: The Washington-California game will air live FSN with Barry Tompkins, Petros Papadakis and Jim Watson calling the action. Fans can watch a delayed internet broadcast of each game this season on the Dawg Channel at gohuskies.com the Tuesday after the game between 5:00 p.m. and midnight Pacific Time. There is no charge for any Dawg Channel programming this year. Additionally, "Huskies All-Access" airs each Thursday at 7:00 p.m. during the season on Fox Sports.
Radio: The Husky Sports Network, with its flagship station KJR 950-AM, will carry the live broadcast of every football game to five different states and British Columbia, Canada, on 23 different radio stations. Longtime play-by-play man Bob Rondeau and color analyst Chuck Nelson are joined by sideline reporter Elise Woodward. Many broadcasts will also be carried on XM Satellite Radio on channel 194, 195 or 196, and all can be heard over the internet via the Dawg Channel at gohuskies.com, which is available for no charge this season.
Washington-California Ties: Three members of the Washington coaching staff have spent time as assistant coaches at California. Prior to this season, Husky secondary coach J.D. Williams spent the last four years in the same role at Cal. UW defensive coordinator Kent Baer held that same job in Berkeley from 1987 to 1991 while Husky offensive coordinator Tim Lappano was assistant head coach and running backs coach for the Bears from 1992 to 1995. Cal's new offensive coordinator, Mike Dunbar is a 1972 graduate of the University of Washington. He went to Lakes High in Tacoma, got a master's degree from Pacific Lutheran and was head coach at Central Washington (1987-91). UW running backs coach Trent Miles and Cal head coach Jeff Tedford were on the same staff at Fresno State for one season, 1997. Lappano, Husky receivers coach Eric Yarber and Cal offensive line coach and Seattle native Jim Michalczik were all on Dennis Erickson's Oregon State staff in the late 1990s and early 2000s. New Cal DBs coach R. Todd Littlejohn, who replaced Williams on the Bears' staff, also replaced Williams at San Jose State in 2000 after Williams had left for Fresno State. Finally, as far as the coaches go, Michalczik is married to former Husky volleyball player Jennifer Streatfeild. Cal's preseason roster lists two players from Washington: RS-freshman linebacker Anthony Felder and freshman DB Brandon Jones, who both attended O'Dea High, same as UW receiver Gordie Verhovek. Washington's roster includes numerous Californians, but only seven from Northern California: Donald Butler (Sacramento), Matt Fountaine (Oakland), Greyson Gunheim (Sebastopol), Chad Macklin (Visalia), Jordan Murchison (Oakland), Louis Rankin (Stockton) and C.J. Wallace (Sacramento). Numerous Bears and Huskies attended the same high school: UW's Wilson Afoa and Cal's Tyson Alualu (St. Louis); Fountaine, Murchison and Cal's Drew Glover and Cameron Toler (Bishop O'Dowd), UW's Dashon Goldson and Roy Lewis and Cal's Marcus O'Keith (Narbonne); UW's Brandon Ala and Cal's Mika Kane and Abu Ma'afala (Kamehameha); UW's Stanley Daniels; UW's Danny Morovick and Cal's Kevin Bemoll (Mission Viejo); UW's Eric Berglund and Cal's Kevin Riley (Beaverton) and Cal's Fahim Abd Allah and Mickey Pimentel (Marian Catholic).
Last Year vs. California (Sept. 10, Husky Stadium): Despite hitting paydirt on its first play of the game, Washington was unable to contain a potent Cal offense in a 56-17 loss to the Bears last season at Husky Stadium. Coming off a close and disappointing loss to Air Force in the season opener, the Dawgs' first game under new coach Tyrone Willingham, the Dawgs opened the game in style as Darin Harris picked off Joe Ayoob's first pass. On the first play of the ensuing drive, Isaiah Stanback hit Sonny Shackelford with a 56-yard pass to give the Huskies a 7-0 lead only 20 seconds into the game. Ayoob, however, who had struggled to an 0-for-10 day off the bench the previous week, caught fire, throwing four first-half touchdown passes. The first, with 2:16 left in the first quarter, was a 9-yard toss to Robert Jordan. The same to players hooked up on a 24-yard TD early in the second. After a Husky field goal, Ayoob hit Jordan with a 58-yard scoring pass and then closed out the half with a 14-yard touchdown to David Gray, staking the Bears to a 28-10 halftime lead. In the second half, after Stanback hit Craig Chambers wtih a 39-yard touchdown pass, Cal tailback Marcus O'Keith scored on runs of five and 71 yards. The Bears added to the lead on a 41-yard interception return from Daymeion Hughes and a 35-yard TD run from Justin Forsett on the game's final play. While Stanback had a solid statistical day, going 22-for-39 for 301 yards, one interception and two touchdowns, Ayoob compiled four TDs on 17-for-27 passing, good for 271 yards. Jordan finished with 11 catches for 192 yards and three scores while Shackelford had his then-career best day for the UW, catching six passes for 124 yards and a TD.
Willingham vs. Cal: In his seven seasons as head coach at Stanford (1995-2001), UW head coach Tyrone Willingham posted a perfect 7-0 record against the Cardinal's biggest rival, California. That stretch of games included four contests played at Stanford Stadium and three at Berkeley's Memorial Stadium. Several of the games were close. In Willingham's first "Big Game" in 1995, Stanford won, 29-24. Two years later, the Cardinal snatched a 21-20 win followed by a 10-3 victory in 1998 in Berkeley. The 2000 game in Berkeley was a 36-30 overtime victory and Willingham's most recent win over the Bears, in 2001, came by a touchdown, 35-28. Willingham has 1-0 head-to-head vs. Keith Gilbertson, 1-0 vs. Steve Mariucci, 5-0 vs. Tom Holmoe and 0-1 vs. Jeff Tedford.
Only the Big Boys: Washington is one of just eight NCAA Division I-A programs that has never faced a non-Division I-A opponent since the current division setup was established in 1978. Coming into this season that club included nine programs, but Colorado dropped out of that group after opening the 2006 season against Montana State. The seven remaining schools that have yet to play a non-Division I-A opponent since the advent of the current format are Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Ohio State, USC, UCLA and Washington.
Oregon State Recap: Washington lost its first home game of the season and Oregon State beat the Dawgs in Husky Stadium for third straight year last Saturday as OSU held off the UW for a 27-17 victory. The Huskies also lost starting quarterback Isaiah Stanback to a fourth-quarter foot injury (the severity of the injury is yet to be determined). The Huskies took the games' first lead on a 45-yard field goal from Michael Braunstein, his career long. However, OSU tailback Yvenson Bernard capped a drive with a two-yard TD run to put the visitors on top. In the second quarter, Beavers kicker Alexis Serna hit a 28-yard field goal to make it a 10-3 Oregon State lead. Later in the second, the Huskies turned a pair of Scott White interceptions into touchdowns as Stanback ran in scores from three and four yards, giving the UW a 17-10 halftime lead. However, after Serna connected on a second field (his 13th in three career games at Husky Stadium), Beavers QB Matt Moore connected with receiver Sammie Stroughter on an 80-yard touchdown pass late in the third. Early in the fourth, OSU stretched the lead to 10 points on a three-yard run from Bernard. On the ensuing drive, Stanback was hurt at the end of a 24-yard run, which still failed to convert a 3rd-and-28 play. Backup Carl Bonnell was unable to get the Huskies on the board and OSU closed out the win. Moore, Bernard and Stroughter all had big games. Moore was 14-for-19 for 308 yards and a TD. Stroughter caught seven passes for 223 yards and Bernard carried the ball 29 times for 144 yards and two touchdowns.
Nearly All Or Nothing For O-Line: UW's five starting offensive linemen (LT Ben Ossai, LG Stanley Daniels, C Juan Garcia, RG Clay Walker, RT Chad Macklin) had played every snap of the first five games this season before Eric Berglund started at LT at USC and played the first quarter. Still, only six Huskies have played on the line this season and four have played every snap (all but Ossai) in all six games. Garcia and Ossai both entered the season never having played in a game. Aside from Berglund, who'd never played before the USC game, the four backup players on the UW's depth chart have yet to play in college.
Decade After Decade: Washington has won a conference title and a trip to the Rose Bowl in each of the last nine decades, dating back to the 1920s when Washington won the berth in 1923 and 1925. In the 1930s, the Dawgs won the `36 title. In the `40s, Washington earned the trip in 1943 and then barely slipped in under the wire in the 1950s, winning the 1959 crown. The Huskies won two Rose Bowl berths in the 1960s -- 1960 and 1963 -- and one in the 1970s (1977). Titles in 1980 and 1982 did it for that decade and three straight trips to Pasadena to begin the 1990s covered that 10-year span. Now in the 2000s, UW was the first team to earn Rose Bowl berths in nine straight decades. USC joined the Dawgs in that distinction in 2004 after their New Year's Day appearance in Pasadena.
Finishing First or Second: Despite a 10th-place finish in the Pac-10 in 2004 and 2005, Washington has finished either first or second in the conference (including ties) in 18 of the last 29 seasons, dating back to a fourth-place finish in 1976. Over that span, Washington has won the championship (outright or shared) eight times - 1977, 1980, 1981, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1995 and 2000 - while finishing second 10 other times.
The 100-Yard Factor: Since the 1947 season, Washington is 162-41-3 (.794) when a Husky player rushes for 100 yards in a game. The Huskies went 3-1 in such games in 2003, 1-1 in 2004 and 2-3 last season. In the 2006 season opener vs. San Jose State, two Huskies (Louis Rankin, 145 yards; Isaiah Stanback, 102) ran for 100 or more in a UW win. Rankin then went for 112 in the loss at Oklahoma.
History Lesson: Successfully rushing the football and winning go hand-in-hand for the Huskies. Since 1990, Washington has rushed for 200 yards in a game 65 times. The Huskies' record stands at 56-8-1 (.869) in those contests. Since the 1995 season, Washington is 31-5-1 (.851) when rushing for 200 yards. In their season opening win over San Jose State, the Huskies won behind 300 rushing yards in a win, but then ran for 204 in the loss at Oklahoma.
Playing at Home: Washington has gone unbeaten at home 13 times in its history, including six times in the last 16 seasons. Washington has won 77 of its last 104 (.745) games at Husky Stadium with one tie (77-26-1). Since 1980, the Huskies stand 125-37-2 (.768) at home. Since 1990, the Huskies are 48-19-1 (.713) at Husky Stadium vs. Pac-10 opponents.
Historic Husky Stadium: The 2006 season marks the 87th 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 341-148-21 (.689).
Captains: Washington will not have season-long captains again this year. Instead, Coach Tyrone Willingham will name game captains each week. Each game's set of captains will be informed of the honor the Friday night before each game. Here's a list of each game's captains:
San Jose State: Stanley Daniels, Kenny James, Isaiah Stanback, C.J. Wallace
Oklahoma: Stanley Daniels, Kenny James, Isaiah Stanback, C.J. Wallace
Fresno State: Tahj Bomar, Kenny James, Louis Rankin, Scott White
UCLA: Brandon Ala, Sean Douglas, Marc Palaita, C.J. Wallace
Arizona: Michael Braunstein, Roy Lewis, Sonny Shackelford, Clay Walker
USC: Greyson Gunheim, Daniel Howell, Kenny James, Isaiah Stanback
Oregon State: Matt Fountaine, Dashon Goldson, Sonny Shackelford, Clay Walker
Degrees of Success: Last June, a total of 14 current Husky football players participated in graduation ceremonies at the UW. While all remain enrolled and none have technically collected their diplomas, all have completed their coursework. Additionally, two former Husky wide receiver greats earned their undergraduate degrees last June: Mario Bailey and Spider Gaines. Here's a list of the 14 current UW football players who went through graduation ceremonies last June (the list doesn't include Dan Milsten, who is acting as a student coach after his playing career was cut short by injury): DE Brandon Ala, PK Michael Book, OG Stanley Daniels, CB Matt Fountaine, CB Dashon Goldson, TB Kenny James, DT Donny Mateaki, CB Josh Okoebor, FB Mark Palaita, TB Shelton Sampson, QB Isaiah Stanback, QB Felix Sweetman, OG Clay Walker and OLB Scott White.
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. Senior cornerback Matt Fountaine's older brother, Jamal, was a four-year letterman defensive lineman in the early 1990s at the UW. Fullback Luke Kravitz' father Al, was a defensive end that lettered at the UW in 1970 and 1971. Freshman 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. Senior safety C.J. Wallace is a cousin of former UW wide receiver Ken Conley, who lettered in 1973 and 1974. Freshman defensive end Fred Wiggs is the younger brother of former Husky defensive lineman Sekou Wiggs, and finally, safety Chris Hemphill and cornerback Roy Lewis are cousins.