Monday, March 10, 2008

The Monday Morning Wash

Whoever ends up with the AD job at Washington is going to have some significant positions to fill since it seems the high level people Todd Turner brought in are actively seeking employment elsewhere. The latest to leave is Scott Barnes who will become the AD at Utah State.

Frank Fidler

Remember the day's when the Pac Ten had competent officiating, well a lot of those competent officials have retired, and one of the great one's passed away this weekend.

Frank Burke Fidler, 86, died peacefully at his home Feb. 27 with his wife and son at his side. His death was caused by difficulties after a fall, subsequent surgeries and several bouts of pneumonia, according to his son, Brett Fidler, of Bellevue. He was well known in Seattle athletic circles. Mr. Fidler officiated football and basketball at both the high-school and collegiate levels. He helped establish the Washington State High School Officiating Association and was selected as an official for the Rose Bowl in 1964 and 1976, among other high-profile venues. He spent several years coaching the Buchan Bakers Amateur Athletic Union basketball team and in 1956 his team won the national championship, and later toured, playing teams in the Philippines and Japan.

Like most officials of that era Frank was an educator who spent many years teaching in the Seattle school district. Officiating was a great way to moonlight and make extra cash in those days.

Frank also was the coach of the famed Buchan Bakers. The Bakers were a big deal in Seattle during the 1950's and very early 1960's. Back in the days when the AAU was big time the team won a national championship in basketball. The teams featured players like Elgin Baylor, Bob Houbregs, and the O'Brien twins during different periods.

Brockman Status

Jon Brockman is going to tough it out and try to play this week at the Pac Ten tournament. diagnostic test reveal that he suffered a sever sprain rather than a broken ankle which is good news for Husky fans. Brockman also points out that the Huskies beat California on the road a week ago when he only played 24 minutes because of foul trouble. The Huskies need to step it up considerably while Brockman is out of the lineup.


A new potential ownership group has emerged for the Sonics led by Microsoft billionaire Steve Balmer. This potential ownership group wants to stay at a remodeled Key Arena, and they only want $75 million form the city, and another $75 million from the state to renovate Key Arena. Even local stadium subsidy opponents are enthusiastic about the potential plan. Legislators on the other hand are saying that there isn't enough time left in the special session to handle it. Slade Gorton who is leading the cities effort from a law perspective to defense the existing lease says they have plenty of time if they want to get it done. how this effects Husky Stadium is simple, and extension of the tax if granted would probably be worked to include renovations at Husky Stadium. Keep an eye on this one, it could turn around quickly because it would be a win/win for all concerned. Of course in Washington State win/win never means a victory because there are always so many special interests involved. the state should jump on this one because this opportunity may never surface again in the immediate future.

If Clay Bennett refuses to sell the Sonics, speculation has centered largely on Seattle pursuing a struggling franchise such as the New Orleans Hornets to fill the void if a prospective new ownership group remodels KeyArena.

Nathan Ware Winding Down

As usual, great job this past year Nathan!

This will be the final Monday Morning Longsnapper until the beginning of the 2008 football season. I will continue the blog - without the MML - through spring football. The Snapper is an "in-season" column for me and - with basketball season ending - my main UW sports season is at a close. All good things have to come to an end - at least for five months. I'll be on "blogging vacation" for May, June, and July.


prrbrr said...

Johnb, thanks for the sad words on Frank Fidler. I remember him well as he was the Vice Principal at Garfield HS when I was there, and also watched him officiate numerous games in the state tourneys and UW back then as well as when the Buchan Bakers played a few games against my older brothers church team. When I was thinking about the lousy officiating recently in the PAC 10, I was wondering whatever happened to good referees like Mr Fidler. Now my ? has been answered, RIP, Mr Fidler, you will always have my respect.

John Berkowitz said...

Frank was a very respected official who was well known at the national level. They don't make too many guys like that anymore.

bigdave967 said...

Always sad to hear when a good man is taken from us.

There is an unfortunate downward spirial in the referee ranks ever since instant replay. It almost makes them lazy knowing that the error can be fixed, no harm no foul.

Kind of a random thought here...Ed Rush, NBA ref for many years was my football coach in college...My head coach and him were buddies for a long time and when he got out of the day to day refereeing he moved to Bloomsburg and started coaching our special teams...Great guy.

Sorry about this but i have another thought I was hoping others would chime in on...What do you think of UW's extermely tough out of conference schedule. Arizona is playing 3 patsies and UW is playing Oklahoma, Notre Dame (never count them out), and BYU. Why is Willingham taking on such a big load in a year he's on the hot seat?? UW is one of 5 teams (?) that has never played a 1-AA team. What about scheduling good mid major teams like Boise State, Fresno State, or middle of the pack major teams like Colorado, Georgia Tech?? They are hurting themselves by playing the big dogs on building years.

t9odawg said...

I think the schedule that bigdave refers to was set up by Babs.
Is it possible Tyrone's ego won't let him ask for changes?
The word around Olyville (publicly anyway) is the Super Sonics are gone

Anonymous said...

I was at Roosevelt when he was Principal. What a great guy. A few times when we were waiting for subs he would come in and just chat with the students and it often ended up being stories about refereeing Pac 8 (Pac 10?) games. Had some great stories about Woody Hayes. Really, what a great guy.

John Berkowitz said...

You can't really do anything about the schedule, but the correct formula has always been one tough national game, one MWC type game, and one WAC or Mid American type game.

Nobody really expected Boise State or Hawaii to be top 25 teams on a yearly basis.