The Huskies were 7-5 on the season and played in a bowl game for the 2nd straight year, but can the season be looked at as a success?
That is a tough one.
This season was a tale of 2 seasons when you really look at it, as in the first half UW looked like a legit Pac 12 contender, but in the 2nd half they looked far from.
The Huskies began the season well winning their first 2 games against Eastern Washington and a solid Hawaii team, but then they faced a ranked Nebraska team who the Huskies upset in the Holiday Bowl last season.
The game was at Nebraska and while UW played solid on the offensive side of the ball scoring 38 points their defense was terrible giving up 51 points. ( A sign of things to come)
UW got off to a great start in Pac 12 play winning their first 3 games beating Cal, Utah, and Colorado.
The Huskies were brimming with confidence and QB Keith Price and RB Chris Polk were putting up great numbers, as they headed into the HUGE Stanford game at 5-1. However, in Palo Alto they were humiliated giving up a ton of yards in a 65-21 loss to the Cardinal.
The Huskies went onto win their next game against Arizona, but then they lost their next 3 games getting blown out by Oregon and USC and then lost a shocker falling to an Oregon State squad 38-21 that ended the season at 3-9.
The Huskies were sitting at 6-5 heading into their Apple Cup game facing Washington State and they won that game to end the season on a high note.
The Huskies were invited to the Alamo Bowl, but they had the unenviable task of taking on a ranked Baylor squad and Heisman winning QB Robert Griffin III.
In that game the UW offense was on fire racking up 666 yards, Keith Price passed for 438 yards with 4 TD and 0 INT, and RB Chris Polk rushed for 147 yards.
Those are sick stats, but the Huskies still lost by 11 points.
The 67-56 outcome won by Baylor was the highest scoring bowl game ever that was won in regulation.
The UW defense gave up 777 yards in the game and while Griffin III played decent Baylor’s rushing offense racked up 482 rushing yards.
I mentioned the defense being the Achilles Heel of the Huskies and that was a major understatement.
Overall, Washington had the nation’s 107th ranked defense and they ranked 116th out of 120 FBS team defending the pass and 74th defending the run.
Overall, the Huskies had a winning record and played in a bowl, but they were 0-4 against ranked teams and in those games they gave up an average of 54.25 ppg.
Still, the Huskies had a great year offensively with Chris Polk rushing for 1,488 yards with 12 TD and Keith Price passing for 3,063 yards with 33 TD.
Price will be coming back and the Huskies still have Nick Montana, who really struggled under center in his limited time, and UW will bring in a couple of highly touted freshman QB’s in Jeff Lindquist and Cyler Miles.
Chris Polk is entering the NFL draft. So long to a great Dawg.
I’m sure hoping the Huskies don’t have the same problem as they did this season, which was on defense.
Let’s hope some of the incoming recruits play over and above how we think they’ll play, and that Wilcox and Sirmon work some wonders for Coach Sark on the practice field and in the film room.
If Sark is truly to get this Husky team to 10 wins and be a true ranked team each week and a national contender the Dawgs have to become elite on defense.
Just my .02c.