Hello Husky fans. Sorry for the lack of coverage this week. Between company, life and Andrew getting a new job and having a birthday, it’s been a busy week. Coming off the Idaho State beatdown, there wasn’t a lot to discuss anyway. The Bengals were easily the worst team I ever remember the Huskies playing. It seems a little pointless to play a game like that, but at least they get an easy win. It was also good to see the Huskies not mess around and just take care of business. They were able to play every eligible player on the roster as well.
The schedule gets much more interesting for everyone this week. This game will tell a lot about both the Huskies and Wildcats. It’s also a bit of a do or die game for Arizona St. and USC, at least if either want to stay in contention in the south. We also might learn whether any of the past cellar-dwellars off to good starts (WSU, Colorado, etc.) are for real. Colorado will have a tough time stopping OSU’s passing attack, but they might be able to put up enough points of their own to squeak to a 3-0 start. WSU takes on Stanford at Century Link in a fascinating game. The Cougar defense has looked greatly improved, but they haven’t faced much of a challenge. I doubt they pull out the upset, but there are still a few doubts about Stanford as well. It should be a fun Saturday.
I didn’t put out my weekly rankings of who had the best week, mostly because most of the games were so pathetic. That will return next week, along with actual power rankings of the whole conference, now that we’re about a third of the way through the season. I’m also planning to write on the Mariners, but every time I start to do that, some new fiasco happens. As good as the football teams in Seattle look, the Mariners are that clueless right now. Anyway, if you want to check back next week, we should have that and more up, and hopefully 4-0 starts to celebrate for both the Huskies and Hawks for the first time in… forever? On to the predictions.
Joe’s out hiking the countryside and didn’t have time to write up anything, but he did send a score. Happy hiking, Joe!
UW 33 – UA 20
If the Huskies hadn’t been demolished in Tucson last year, I would think this would be a reasonably easy win. It helps that the Wildcats lost QB Matt Scott and replaced him with BJ Denker, who has shown no ability to be a dangerous passing threat. If the Dawgs can slow down Denker and All-American Ka’deem Carey, I don’t think Arizona can do enough through the air to win. The Cats defense has been better, but I don’t think they’re good enough to stop Washington consistently. This one might stay close, but I’m betting the Huskies eventually pull away for a double-digit win. It’s hard to know what Arizona can do, and Carey and Rich Rodriguez should not be underestimated. Still, if the Huskies are as good as I think they might be, they should win this one handily.
UW41 – UA 17
The Huskies lost to Arizona by 35 points last year, and yet, I think most Husky fans would be surprised if the Dawgs didn’t knock off the Cats tomorrow. Count me as one of those fans. Arizona has played 3 cupcakes, all at home, so the 3-0 record is deceiving and the jury is still out on them. On the other side, the Huskies have been tested and look like a good, if not great, football team. When these teams clash tomorrow night, 3 things stick out to me as reasons why I do not see a repeat of last year. First, the Huskies are at home, which is the biggest factor of all. Second, the QB matchup is not Matt Scott vs. a struggling Keith Price, but rather “Vanilla Vick” Denker vs. a red hot Keith Price. Finally, the revenge factor is an aspect of this game that I think has weighed on coaches’ and players’ minds all week. Losing 52-17 last year was embarrassing, particularly for the defense. Look for Wilcox to have his D locked in, and in all phases, I just think UW has the edge. Windy weather might be a factor in the pass game but I still predict a lot of points.
UW 38 – UA 20
Husky: “WOOF WOOF WOOF!!! I’M A DAAAWWWWG! BARK!”
Husky: “That’s all you can say? Meow? Roooof! Grooowwwwll.”
Husky: “You’re an idiot.”
Husky: “Oh, that’s right. You’re a Wildcat.”
Husky: “Now, I must kill you.”
I have been a little bit out of the loop as of late but it seems like people are downplaying this game a little bit. I don’t really understand why. Last year, the Wildcats handed the Huskies their worst loss of the season. The defense seemed to never have a chance and the offense never could get rolling. Arizona just seemed to have our number.
This season, the Huskies appear to be much improved but they have yet to face a team with the speed Arizona has. Arizona hasn’t played anyone good in their non-conference portion of the schedule and somehow this has been a bit of an indictment of their talent level, even though they have handled their business with ease. Their defense should be better than last season and they have one of the best players in the nation. Needless to say, I’m a little bit concerned.
The amount of experts picking blowout for this game doesn’t seem quite right to me but I do think the Huskies will pull away. They seem to be on a revenge kick this year and I imagine there is some motivation from last year’s disaster. The Huskies have improved their speed on both sides of the ball and are now used to playing up-tempo. Arizona’s QB may have some trouble in the rain and in his first intimidating road-start. The Huskies should be able to run the ball at will and they need to limit Ka’Deem Carey’s yards.
It should be a fun game and the Huskies hope to get to 4-0. There should be about 200 plays run total and the pace could be frantic. With the rain and wind coming down, it will feel like a true Fall Saturday in Seattle. All in all, I see the Huskies winning a game that is fairly close.
UW 42 – UA 31