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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

February 15, 2009 at 10:08 PM

February answers, volume six

Another round. …
Q: You’ve detailed in the Husky Football blog how the football program is self-supporting/sufficient. Are any of the other sports programs, like the Husky men’s Basketball Team being televised and selling out, self-supporting?
A: Actually, the football program is way more than self-supporting. It basically supports almost every other sport there is. The football program, UW AD Scott Woodward said a few months ago, brings in 85 percent of the revenue for the athletic department. The only other sport that typically brings in more than it spends is men’s basketball (women’s basketball was a money-maker for a while back in its heyday, but isn’t right now). But that’s pretty typical at most places that football and men’s basketball bring in all the money. At some schools, some other sports do bring in a lot of revenue — Tennessee or UConn women’s basketball, for instance. But most places, football is the major bread-winner followed by men’s basketball.
Q: You mentioned that Coach Steve Sarkisian was essentially being creative (within compliance) in his efforts to obtain the players needed. You also mentioned that he’s not afraid to ruffle some feathers. That got me thinking — are females allowed to play for the Husky Football team, and do you think if there were a female that could compete at/above any of the current players that he would pursue that?
A: Was a little unsure if this was a legit question or not, but it’s kind of interesting to ponder, so what the heck. Yes, females are allowed to play for any college football team. However, none has ever tried to play for the Huskies (at least, not since I’ve been covering the team since 1997 and I haven’t heard of it happening prior to that). And very few have ever really tried anywere. Interestingly, though, one of the few who did was essentially recruited by a former UW coach — Rick Neuheisel. When he was at Colorado, Neuheisel encouraged Katie Hnida to walk-on to the team there as a kicker. Neuheisel left Colorado for UW before Hnida joined the team there, and when things went sour for her in Boulder, she thought about transferring to UW (details on that here). But that’s the closest I’ve ever heard of it happening here. I guess I think any coach would pursue a female player if there was one that could play at the Pac-10 level. But you really don’t see any females playing at the high school level, and that’s where it would have to happen first.
Q: Will the Huskies have a winning record next season?
A: Right now I’d say no (and I say “right now” because so much can change between now and the fall and I reserve the right to change my official prediction). But right now, it’s hard to see that big of a leap from 0-12 to 7-5 (you did say winning record, not .500) especially against that schedule, including LSU and Notre Dame in the non-conference and then all nine Pac-10 teams, including a home game with USC and trips to , Oregon State, Stanford and Arizona State. At this moment, UW would be a pretty heavy underdog in all six of those games (maybe not as much against Stanford and ASU, but still an underdog). This is still a young team with unproven players everywhere and obviously a new system and culture that has to be implemented. I know Cal made that kind of leap in 2002, but that was with a more veteran team than this one (the Bears went into that season with 13 senior starters) and an easier schedule that allowed them to gain confidence (Baylor and New Mexico State the first two games, for instance). It’s just hard to rationally see it right now.
All for now.



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