Nov. 4, 2002
The Game: The Washington football team (4-5 overall and 1-4 in the Pac-10 Conference) closes out the 2002 home slate looking to get back to .500 for the season. Saturday, Oregon State (6-3, 2-3) comes to Husky Stadium for a 12:30 p.m. (PST) game. The Huskies have dropped their last three games while the Beavers, who got off to an 0-3 Pac-10 start, have won two in a row. The game won't be televised live, but will air Saturday evening at 7:00 p.m. on Fox Sports Northwest. The game is the first of three straight against the UW's northwest rivals. After the OSU game, the Huskies close out the season with games at Oregon on Nov. 16 and at Washington State in the Apple Cup on Nov. 23. Saturday's game vs. the Beavers will also mark the final Husky Stadium appearance for 15 seniors.
Huskies vs. Beavers History: Washington holds a commanding 55-27-4 record in the all-time series against Oregon State, having won the 13 of the last 14 meetings and 23 of the last 25, dating back to 1975. The series against the Beavers is the second -longest (to Stanford) active series in Washington football history in terms of years and third-longest in terms of total meetings (to Oregon and Washington State) The teams first met on Dec. 4, 1897, with Oregon State earning a 16-0 home win. That game was Washington's second-ever against a major college. The next OSU-UW game didn't come until 1902, a 16-6 UW win . From 1924 to 1964, the annual UW-OSU game was played either at Husky Stadium or Multnomah (Civic) Stadium in Portland. Since 1966, the OSU home games have been played in Corvallis. The Huskies are 14-4 all-time at Reser (Parker) Stadium and 17-7 all-time in Corvallis. The Huskies are 31-15-2 all-time against OSU in games played in Seattle, including a 24-13-0 mark in Husky Stadium. Washington has won the last six UW-OSU games played in Seattle, dating back to a 21-20 loss in 1985. The Huskies have also won 11 of the last 12 and 17 of the last 21 against the Beavers at Husky Stadium. Last season, the Beavers broke a 13-game losing streak to the Huskies when an unranked OSU trounced No. 8 Washington, 49-24, in Corvallis, the first win (home or away) since that 1985 Husky Stadium game. The last two games at Husky Stadium have gone down to the wire. In 2000, Ryan Cesca missed a game-tying field goal in the closing seconds as the Huskies held on for a 33-30 win. In 1998, the Beavers went for a two-point conversion with no time left. The pass attempt was batted down and the Huskies won, 35-34. Husky head coach Rick Neuheisel is 2-1 against Oregon State and 2-1 in head-to-head meetings with Dennis Erickson. As Beaver head coach, Erickson is 1-2 against UW, and in two seasons as Washington State's head coach, went 1-1 against the UW.
Already No. 1: Junior quarterback Cody Pickett is having an unprecendented season in terms of his passing statistics. Washington, well-known for producing NFL quarterbacks, has never seen the prolific numbers that Pickett is posting this season. Nine games into his junior year, Pickett has already set a new single-season passing yards record with 3,240 this year (surpassing Cary Conklin's 2,569 in 1989). Pickett broke Conklin's mark in the season's seventh game. Now with 5,655 career yards, Pickett is only 88 yards shy of breaking the UW career passing yards record of 5,742 (Brock Huard). Pickett also has a good shot at the Pac-10 single-season passing record, especially with the 12-game schedule this year. Pickett must throw for 398 yards over the final three games to break the conference record of 3,637 yards, set by Washington State's Ryan Leaf in 1997. Pickett's 3,240 passing yards this season already rank No. 7 in Pac-10 history. Two weeks ago vs. ASU, he broke Steve Pelluer's 1983 Husky record of 213 completions. Pickett now has 257, 43 short of Steve Stenstrom's Pac-10 record of 300 (Stanford, 1993).
Television: The OSU-UW game will not be shown on live television. However, the game will air on same-day tape delay Saturday at 7:00 p.m. on Fox Sports in the Northwest with David Locke, former Husky QB Sonny Sixkiller and former Beaver Steve Preece providing the call. The replay will air again Sunday at 3:00 p.m. Also, "The Washington Football Experience" airs each Thursday during the season on Fox Sports. The new program is an up-close look at each Husky game, with one-on-one player interviews and sideline photography.
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 on 21 different radio stations. Longtime broadcast team Bob Rondeau (play-by-play), Chuck Nelson (color) and Bill Swartz (sidelines) provide the call.
Last Year vs. Oregon State: Washington suffered one of its worst Pac-10 losses in years last season in Corvallis, falling 49-24 to the Beavers. The loss marked the Beavers first win over Washington since 1985 and the first in Corvallis since 1974. OSU quarterback Jonathan Smith, who had several of the best games of his career against Washington, had another fine game, throwing for 317 yards and two touchdowns on 18-of-28 passing. Tailback Ken Simonton ran for three touchdowns and 107 yards as OSU scored five TDs on the ground. The Huskies' offense struggled as well, rushing for a total of only 88 yards and passing for 193. The game appeared close in the early-going, but a huge turnover turned the tide. The Huskies were driving, down 21-10, when OSU cornerback Dennis Weathersby picked off a Pickett pass and returned it 73 yards to set up another Beaver touchdown. Pickett finished 13-for-32 for 160 yards and Taylor Barton finished up the game, going 4-for-9 for 33 yards and one touchdown .
NW Rivals: The 2002 Husky schedule includes a quirk that sees the Dawgs close out the regular season against its three Northwest Pac-10 rivals: Oregon State, Oregon and Washington State (in that order). The Huskies haven't played the other three Northwest teams in order (at the end or any other part of the season) since 1914, when Washington's seven-game schedule finished out in the same order as this year's. The UW also played the three rivals in order in the 1908, 1911 and 1912 seasons.
Washington-OSU Ties: As one might imagine with two Northwest schools, there's some crossover between the UW and Oregon State programs, especially within the coaching staffs. In 1982, when OSU head coach Dennis Erickson was head coach at Idaho, Keith Gilbertson was the offensive coordinator. After two years in the USFL, Gilbertson came back to Idaho as Erickson's coordinator in 1985, then took over as the Vandals' head coach in 1986 when Erickson left for Wyoming. Gilbertson also worked on Erickson's Seattle Seahawks staff from 1996 to 1998. Gilbertson, in his three stints working with Erickson, also worked alongside current OSU assistant coaches Gregg Smith, Tim Lappano, Craig Bray and Eric Yarber. Lappano was running backs coach at California when Gilbertson was the Bears' head coach (1992-95). Finally, Husky defensive coordinator Tim Hundley spent eight seasons (1982-89) as a defensive assistant at Oregon State, coaching under Joe Avezzano and Dave Kragthorpe. Washington's roster includes only one Oregonian: backup quarterback Taylor Barton (Beaverton). Barton and OSU linebacker Erik Tuma were classmates at Beaverton High. The OSU roster has nine players on its media-guide roster from the state of Washington: DT Chika Agha (Seattle/Sealth), OT Isaac Aronson (Tacoma/Curtis), LB Trent Bray (Pullman), TB Ryan Cole (Port Orchard/South Kitsap), QB Ryan Kanekeberg (Everett/Kamiak), TE Pat Loney (Mukilteo/Kamiak), OG J.C. Ronnfelt (Federal Way/Decatur), P Carl Tobey (Chehalis/Adna) and TB Floyd Wade (Renton/Kennedy)
Seniors' Last Home Game: Fifteen Washington seniors will be making their final Husky Stadium appearance Saturday vs. OSU: K John Anderson, WR Paul Arnold, QB Taylor Barton, TB Braxton Cleman, WR Matt DeBord, DE Kai Ellis, WR Wilbur Hooks, DE Houdini Jackson, DE Anthony Kelley, OL Jonathan Kovis, ILB Ben Mahdavi, WR Patrick Reddick, TE Kevin Ware, OLB Jafar Williams and OG Elliott Zajac. Those Huskies have seen their share of wins at Husky Stadium during their careers. Over the last six seasons (Reddick is a sixth-year player), the UW has gone 27-9 at home. Over the last five seasons (1998-2002), the Huskies are 24-6 at Husky Stadium and over the last four, they're 20-4.
Pickett's Exploits: While junior quarterback Cody Pickett has already broken the Husky single-season passing record, he's also only 87 yards away from breaking the UW career passing record with three games left to plays in his junior season. He also ranks on nearly ever other Washington career top-10 list, including No. 1 on several. In the loss at USC, Pickett threw for 350 yards to extend his school record of seven consecutive 300-yard games, a streak that was broken at ASU. He had his third 400-yard game of the year last week vs. UCLA. Pickett, who has raised his career passing total to 5,655 yards, passed Sonny Sixkiller and Marques Tuiasosopo to the No. 3 spot last week. Pickett, who is averaging 360.0 passing yards per game in 2002, needs 38 yards to pass Damon Huard (5,692) for second, and, again, is now just 87 yards shy of beating Brock Huard's school record of 5,742 passing yards. Pickett, who set a UW single-game record with 34 completions vs. Wyoming then broke it with 35 vs. Cal, now has 427 career completions, putting him third on that list. His career mark of 13.24 yards per completion ranks No. 7 and his 257.0 yards per game are currently a school record. His 19.4 completions per game are No. 1 and his career completion percentage of .585 is No. 3. Pickett boasts a slew of firsts: he is the first UW QB to post more than one career 400-yard game (he has four); the first to post 10 300-yard games; and the first to throw for 300 yards in more than two consecutive games (he had seven straight to start this current season). In just 22 career games Pickett already boasts six of the top eight and nine of Washington's top-16 single-game totals in passing yards. His 15 career 200-yard passing days are second-most in UW history and his 10 50-plus-yard passes are also a school record. Finally, his 30 career TDs are tied for eighth while his 20 touchdowns this season are tied for third-most in UW history, three short of Brock Huard's 1997 record of 23.
Pickett In the Pac-10: With 3,240 yards already this season, junior QB Cody Pickett already ranks No. 7 in Pac-10 history in single-season passing yards. Pickett, with 257 career completions, is 43 short of Steve Stenstrom's record of 300, set in 1993 at Stanford. With 5,655 career passing yards, Pickett ranks No. 40 all-time in Pac-10 history, with more than one full season to play.
Ware Moving Up: Despite entering the year with only eight career receptions, senior tight end Kevin Ware has put his name on the list of the top tight ends ever at the UW, a school that has earned the reputation as "Tight End U". Ware's 34 receptions this season are tied for fourth-most in Husky history by a tight end. His five touchdowns (he had none prior to this year) are tied for fifth in UW career history. His 384 receiving yards this year are fifth in single-season history while his 508 career yards are ninth on the career chart. His 42 career catches rank 12th, five short of the all-time top-10.
Random Notes: After having opened the season on the road at Michigan, the UW stayed at home for five consecutive games, marking the first time since 1931 that a UW team has played five straight at Husky Stadium in a single season ... in the early part of the last century, it was relatively common for the UW to play much more than half of its games at home and five-game homestands were not rare. However, since the '31 season (the Huskies went 4-1-1 in a six-game home stretch that year), the Huskies have never played more than four in a row at home in any one season ... three times, however, the Huskies have stretched lengthy homestands over two seasons: the UW played its last three of 1969 and the first four of the 1970 season on Montlake and in 1973-74 and 1975-76, the Huskies played six straight home games over two seasons ... last season, Washington led the Pac-10 in attendance for the 11th time in the last 12 seasons, averaging 72,469 fans per game ... not bad, considering that Husky Stadium has a smaller capacity than five of 10 conference schools (ASU, Cal, Stanford, UCLA and USC) ... walkon freshman cornerback Simi Reynolds, who's actually at the UW on a baseball scholarship, will receive a community service award from the Athletes for a Better World organization in a luncheon at Seahawks Stadium on Oct. 29 ... Reynolds, whose older brother Tila is the baseball team's starting shortstop, is being honored for his work mentoring young children with disabilities and for his founding role in Athletes for Kids ... prior to the California contest, Washington had intercepted at least one pass in seven consecutive games, dating back to last season (and counting the Holiday Bowl) ... the last time that the Huskies intercepted a pass in seven straight games was in 1995, when they also went seven straight with at least one pick ... sixth-year senior Patrick Reddick had a career day vs. Cal, setting new personal highs for both receptions (10) and receiving yards (105) ... his 10 catches were the sixth-most ever (tied) in UW single-game history ... last week vs. UCLA, the Husky secondary played most of the game with one true freshman (CB Nate Robinson), two redshirt fresehmen (safeties James Sims and Evan Benjamin) and a sophomore (CB Derrick Johnson) on the field ... Benjamin had a career-high 11 tackles to lead the team ... Washington has four players with 30 or more catches for the first time since 1989 (Orlando McKay, Bill Ames, Greg Lewis & Andre Riley) ... this year, Reggie Williams (54), Patrick Reddick (37), Kevin Ware (34) and Charles Frederick (30) all have 30 or more receptions ... Paul Arnold needs only one more catch to join the club and Braxton Cleman needs five more.