Monday, November 05, 2007

The Monday Morning Wash

Let's wrap up Saturdays game by saying it is nice to win, and it is even nicer for the players, and staff to be able to practice this week with the confidence a win gives you. The Huskies are still in the thick of things as far as being bowl eligible is concerned. There are very four winnable games left on the schedule.

The next team on the schedule is Oregon State which has been losing players all season. This isn't one of those years where the Beavers have had the chance to jell for a late run. There is a very strong possibility that TB Yvenson Bernard, and QB Sean Canfield may not play next week. That would be a big plus for Washington. Las Vegas thinks so too, and they haven't issued a line for the game yet while they wait for the injury report today. Jake Locker also is hurting a bit after taking a big hit on his right shoulder late in the game, so that will figure in the odds makers decisions too. If Locker is out Washington is still in better shape since Carl Bonnell is more than just an adequate back up.

I feel for the Beavers late this season because the one team you want to avoid when you are banged up is a very physical USC team. The Trojans may be having a sub par season, but they still hit the crap out of you on every single play. OSU is probably a very sore team this Monday morning.

No matter who starts for the Beavers, Washington will have to do two things to beat the Oregon State and their stout defense next Saturday.

1. Stop the run

As we have seen it really doesn't matter who is in the backfield for the opposing team, we still have trouble stopping the run. Even if Bernard is out the Beavers will run all day till they are stopped by the Huskies. Stanford gained nearly 100 yards on Saturday with a fifth string running back. Bad things happen to OSU when they put the ball in the air, so they will attack the Huskies on the ground no matter who starts at TB. UW needs to find a way to stop them.

2. Run the ball

Louis Rankin had the game of his career last week in Palo Alto. He is still dancing way too much for my liking, and I can't believe he ran out of bounds when Locker was blocking a player down the field in front of him. That being said it is tough to knock a kid who is coming off one of the greatest running days in husky history. It really all comes down to the offensive line, they need to open holes in the Beaver defense.

Around the Pac Ten

Oregon won the game of the day against Arizona State. The Sun Devils were really never in this one as Oregon played it's "A" game and exposed the Sun Devils a bit on Saturday. It could have been different if this one was played in Sun Devil Stadium, but it wasn't. Erickson still has a chance to qualify his team for a BCS bowl and it will be interesting to see how they finish.

As for the Ducks I really think they are the best football team in the country right now. They are currently third in the rankings and it would be a shame if they can't move by LSU, or Ohio state by the end of the season to qualify for the BCS championship game. Michigan is rounding into shape and looks like a team that could handle Ohio State in the finale.

WSU gave California everything they could handle but fell short this weekend. The Cougars are a team that is getting better every single week and they will not be tough to beat in the Apple Cup. California on the other hand isn't getting better every week because of the toll injuries have taken. The Bears are very beatable each week.

USC put together a great second quarter against the Beavers than held OSU scoreless in the second half to cruise to the victory. Only three points for the Beavers in this one, and as I mentioned earlier Bernard, and Canfield are very questionable for next week.

Arizona 4-6 put what was probably the last nail in Karl's coffin with a dominating type of victory in the desert. Not sure how this affects the tenure of Mike Stoops at this point as the Wildcats face Oregon, and Arizona State to finish the season....ouch.

Boston College dropped out of the National Championship race by losing to Florida State on Saturday night. This was a tough one for my wife to take. She was however excited that Navy beat Notre Dame, like all BC grads, and most of the free world, she hates Notre Dame. The BC loss saved me a lot of money because if they had been in the national championship game she would have insisted we attend.

Pac Ten Power Ratings

1. Oregon....As I said earlier the Ducks are probably the best team in the country. They finish with Arizona, UCLA, and Oregon St.

2. Arizona State....Tough loss for Sparky. They finish with UCLA, USC, and Arizona. The game with USC will likely be for the Rose Bowl.

3. USC....These guys just aren't playing on all cylinders, but they do have a chance to win out and head to Pasadena. They finish up with Cal, ASU, and UCLA which is hardly a cakewalk.

4. California....The Bears are just holding on at this point. They finish with USC, Washington, and Stanford. Realistically the Bears will have to fight to not finish 1-2. Tough to play UW on the road after playing an emotional game with USC.

5. Arizona....Why is a 4-6 team rated #5 that is likely to finish 4-8? If you look at the teams behind them you can't say any are playing better than Arizona right now. The Wildcats finish with Oregon, and ASU.

6. WSU....They were oh so close last week to beating Cal. The Cougs finish with Stanford, Oregon St, Washington and could sweep all three to finish 6-6. By the way I am not in the fire Doba camp no matter how they finish.

7. Oregon State....These guys are beaten up right now and it could result in them losing the rest of the way. The Beavers finish with Washington, WSU, and the Mighty Ducks.

8. UCLA....The Bruins are just playing terrible right now and there is no excuse because they have too much talent. Bruin fans will get what they want this Christmas, a Neu head coach. the Bruins finish with ASU, Oregon, and USC...Ouch!

9. Washington....Beating Stanford does one thing, and that is you no longer are in the cellar by yourself. The Huskies finish with OSU, CAL, WSU, and Hawaii. Will all four and you could have an upper division finish and a minor bowl game. Lose all four and Jim Mora could be in the wings.

10. Stanford....You have to hand it to Stanford for beating USC earlier this year, but they are way too banged up to win another game this season unless the Leland Stanford Junior Band helps out. That's right, the Irish will win another game against a Pac Ten opponent or Charlie Weis is in big trouble. The Cards finish with WSU, Notre Dame, and California.


t9odawg said...

I'll pick a nit. I hope Canfield and Bernard don't play this week.
I see this game as a big test for the Dawgs as the Beavs have manhandled the Dawgs in the trenches since the game in Corvallis where ET went off.

John Berkowitz said...

I will add I pray that Canfield, and Bernard don't play next weekend.

This is a big game, and one that I have always thought would be a tough one to win on the road.

The offensive line is going to have to play a great game no matter who the Beavers throw at us on offense.

t9odawg said...

Agree and the D front seven will have to show better as well because OSU will want to run the ball. I think Polk ran for 100 yards against SC so he's no slouch

Michael Wines said...

Congrats to all the Huskie fans for the win and good luck against the Beavs. Thanks for all the nice comments about the Ducks John. I am still hoarse. It was too much fun.


John Berkowitz said...

Thanks Michael, and good luck to you guys over the next three games.