Today is UW’s graduation, and among those getting their degrees is former UW defensive back Al Burleson, whose playing days ended in 1975.
I detailed Burleson’s journey in a front-page story in the Times today.
Obviously, a neat story to be able to write as Burleson is not only a fondly-remembered former Husky but also the father of one of the leading families of Seattle sports.
As a player, Burleson helped bridge the gap from the Jim Owens to the Don James eras. He was a high school friend of Calvin Jones and followed Jones to UW in 1972.
He was then one of four team captains of James’ first team in 1975, winning honors as the national defensive player of the week by Sports Illustrated when UW beat USC that season 8-7. It’s sometimes forgotten that that team went 5-2 in conference play, losing by three points each to Stanford and Cal and beating both USC and eventual conference and Rose Bowl winner UCLA. Burleson was named the team’s MVP following that season and was also all-conference, and as noted in the story, remains the No. 5 tackler in UW history.
As Burleson said in the story, he’s always been proud to say he went to Washington. Now he can just as proudly say he’s an alum, as well.
IN OTHER NEWS. …
— Lots of good stuff from CBSSports.com on Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott, whom the web site named as the No. 1 power broker in college sports. Included in the package is this look at possible future expansion in college sports and this on the potential for the Pac-12 Network.
— More on the impression Jake Locker made on his Tennessee teammates this week.
— An offshoot of Utah’s move to the Pac-12 is higher ticket prices and student fees.
All for now.