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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

July 24, 2009 at 9:27 AM

July answers. volume 11

Another round, though first a reminder that the ESPN College Football Live segment on football in the state of Washington (I emphasize “state” so you don’t think it will be all about the Huskies) is scheduled to air today. The initial airing is today at 12:30 p.m. on ESPN. It will be repeated later in the day on some of the other various ESPN networks. And there’s still time to vote in the polls that are associated with the show, such as best coach, best player and best team.
Best coach should be Don James (Gil Dobie’s record is obviously unbelievable, but was just in such a different era it’s so hard to compare and I think I’d still take James) and best team should be the ’91 Huskies. Best player, if you just consider college accomplishment, should probably be Steve Emtman as the best player on what remains the only team in state history to go undefeated and win a national title.
Now, on to a few questions:
Q: I’ve read in several articles that even if USC is hammered by the NCAA for Reggie Bush’s alleged wrongdoings, the Trojans probably won’t see much of an effect on their recruiting and talent level. If that is the case, then why did it happen to UW? It sounds as though the penalties won’t be as stiff. Don’t you think the NCAA will want to make an example out of USC?
A: My general response on this is to wait until we see what they actually do before making judgments. Anything you’ve read is just conjecture — I don’t think anyone really knows what is going on behind the scenes. But as I’ve also said before, it’s hard to strictly compare the USC and UW cases — the infractions are different, the people doing the investigating are different, and the tenor of the times is different. The NCAA is also moving away as much as it can from just blanket forward-looking penalties on schools and trying to be a bit more inventive in terms of attempting to penalize those who actually did the crimes — such as the way Kelvin Sampson was hammered in the Indiana basketball case. And then there is the issue of attempting to get proof of what USC did. Bush and his people aren’t cooperating — and the NCAA can’t make them — so getting at some of the allegations is difficult. What I think will happen is that USC basketball will get hit a lot harder than the football team, and if there are messages or examples being sent or made out of this case, it will be through the USC basketball program. But until the investigation is finished, none of us really knows anything for certain.
Q: In the spirit of already salivating over the tailgate party for the UW/LSU game, how does UW tailgating compare across the country and in the PAC-10? Unfortunately, I have not had the privelege to visit many away games or make it to the “Taj Mahal” of tailgating: SEC games.
A: Though I’ve gone to every Pac-10 campus for games at least four times, I may not be the best one to answer this question. As a typical media grunt, I usually arrive at the stadium three hours or so beforehand and head to the press box, where I usually just hang out with other writers, school officials, etc., and watch other games on TV and then watch the teams warm up once they hit the field. So I don’t partake in much tailgating. Mostly what I get is just a taste of the atmosphere as I’m walking through the parking lot or whatever to get to the stadium. But in general from the little I see, the Pac-10 southern schools often seem a little more relaxed, people lounging in the sun, guys playing frisbee on the golf course that surrounds the Rose Bowl, things like that, while the atmosphere in the Northwest schools usually seems a little more rowdy. If I had to say a worst in the conference, probably Stanford because usually there’s just nobody around at all. I’d put UW’s near the top, especially on the nice days, as the setting is just so hard to beat.
Q: Never mind the performance of the team on the field, how about a couple of questions regarding the rest of the game-day experience. Is there any prospect of reducing the number of horrible advertising tie-ins? I’m thinking of the absolutely brutal “Confessions of a Husky Football Fan” or whatever it was called. Is there any prospect of playing something other than incessant hip- hop or rap music over the loudspeakers during the hour prior to kickoff?
A: As referenced in one of the earlier Q-and-A’s, UW officials say there are changes being made to the gameday experience, but that not everything has been set yet so there is nothing to announce now. However, I doubt you are going to see any dip in advertising tie-ins. It’s been made pretty obvious how financially strapped every athletic department is these days, and football is where everyone can make money, so every avenue for doing so will be tapped as much as it can. As for the music being played beforehand, that’s a growing trend everywhere, from all the other stadiums I’ve visited, and I don’t see that abating, either. The days of just the band playing beforehand are long gone, I think. Not saying that’s good or bad — that’s mostly a generational thing, I think — just what it is.
More later.

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