While most of this city may still be focused on one of the crazier football games I’ve ever seen, the Good Guys think it’s time to turn the page and look at the most important game of the season for the Washington Huskies. Tomorrow the Dawgs play Stanford on national television at 6 P.M. For some reason, it is being billed as ‘The Blackout of the Century’. I guess you might as well shoot for the top.
The season for the Huskies has gone as scheduled. They won against a decent team, lost to a great team, and killed a terrible team. They’re 2-1, and the that’s the record that everyone predicted after 2 games. With that being said, there seems to be a great deal of pessimism coming from the fans. I’m guessing that it comes from the blow-out loss to LSU and the injuries. I don’t think there is an excuse for the LSU game and it’s time to put that game to bed but let’s talk about the injuries for a minute.
The Huskies have suffered injuries to 3 starting offensive linemen. Three linebackers have missed games. Two running backs are out for the season. Their second and third wide receivers are either out indefinitely or have been banged up. Their starting safety played with stitches in his eye last game. There have been 9 starters who have already missed a game this season. This program is 3 and a half years removed from going 0-12. That is not enough time to bring in quality depth to fill for all of these injuries. Yes, it’s enough time to bring in good players who will top your depth chart and make you a solid team. But, it’s not enough time for a team to bring in depth to cover all of these injuries.
With that being said, the Huskies are still strong enough to compete. If they don’t, I think we, as fans, should be disappointed. There are enough good to great players on this roster to keep the Huskies in games against top-25 schools. No, I’m not as optimistic about the Huskies after these injuries than I was at the beginning of the year but I think they are still capable of handling this situation. They won’t handle it like a top-10 team, but they’ll handle it like a good team.
I guess my point and question is, should we change our expectations for this Husky season based on the injuries? I think if I had to do my pre-season prediction again I would guess for 7 wins. They already have 2, plus Colorado and WSU are on the schedule. Utah doesn’t seem to be as tough as we thought they’d be. They play Oregon State at home and California is not in a good current state. That’s 7 teams right there. Add in Arizona to that mix and 7 seems like a good expectation to have. Against the good teams I don’t think we should change our expectations. The Huskies need to compete. LSU was a disaster and that shouldn’t happen anymore.
Tomorrow the Huskies play Stanford with an injury-laden team. I don’t expect them to win, in fact I’m leaning towards the thought that they’ll get dominated. I’m sick of thinking that about my team. We have for 10 years and it needs to end, no matter the excuse. Maybe it ends tomorrow against a physical, strong Cardinal team. Probably not, but maybe.
(Some bullet holes after the jump)
Now that you’ve read that disorganized post, here’s just a few things that I think could make tomorrow interesting.
- While the Huskies aren’t getting any offensive linemen back tomorrow, they will be getting back Nate Fellner and Jamaal Kearse. Before the season, these two were going to be starters so this is significant. They both are bigger and more physical players which is what this team needs tomorrow. They might not play the whole game but they will help the team.
- I don’t know what to expect from the offense tomorrow. I think the gameplan will probably include quite a few dink and dunk throws that slowly get the Dawgs down the field. You always hear that you need the run to set-up the pass but tomorrow the Huskies need the opposite. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Huskies hardly ran at all during the first few series but go to it as the game goes on, assuming they are able to keep the game close.
- The defense is the wildcard tomorrow. Stanford doesn’t have an explosive offense but they are still very good. I imagine we’ll see just how much the defense has grown from a year ago, tomorrow. If they get pushed around all night, like we saw against LSU than be disappointed but I think they’ll be okay. For once, they will be the unit that has to keep the Huskies in the game. I’m not sure that they’re up to the task but that has to happen if the Huskies want a victory.
That’s all for now. Real predictions will come soon. Go Dawgs!
Thanks for reading,