Friday, February 29, 2008
Despite the loss the Huskies are playing their best basketball of the season right now with two regular season games, and the conference tourney left. The loss pretty much sealed UW's post season fate unless they win the Pac Tourney.
Brockman led UW with 20 points and 14 rebounds. Joe Wolfinger had a strong game finishing with 12 points in 18 minutes of acion. The Huskies are now 15-14 overall, 6-10 in Pac-10 play.
Thursday, February 28, 2008
The Huskies return three senior safeties with starting experience. Jason Wells, Mesphin Forrester, and Darin Harris. Wells is the best of the bunch but is returning from a nasty knee injury and will be out this Spring. He should be ready to go this Fall, but reconstructed knee's have a way of being troublesome. Mesphin Forrester had his moments, and has some pretty good hands, but he was burned continuously in 2007. Harris who returned from nasty back injury had a solid season, but isn't exactly the type of guy you win with in the Pac Ten, same can be said for Forrester. Both are good role players, but Washington needs a talent infusion at this position to emerge in 2008.
Nate Williams, Victor Aieywa, and Quentin Richardson is where the future of improvement lies at the Safety position. Williams received the most playing time last year, Aieywa got his feet wet on special teams, and Richardson preserved a year of eligibility by redshirting. UW also brought in three frosh who have a chance to play right away, Johri Fogerson, Vince Taylor, and Greg Walker. Expect at least one of those guys to play right away next year depending on how they move players around.
On one hand you start off with three safeties with starting experience. On the other hand they were part of one of the worst Husky defenses in history.
I have liked Jason ever since he set foot on the field as transfer two years ago. The performance of the defense dropped a couple of notches when he was hurt last year. What Jason brings to the position is toughness, and a great attitude. He is a favorite of the coaches, and will be one of the leaders of the defense in 2008. Wells is a hard hitter, and played his best when teamed up with CJ Wallace in 2006. Wells is a shoe in to start if he is healthy this season. He will miss the Spring, but should be full speed sometime this summer.
Mesphin has played a lot since he has been here, but he is really a cornerback in a safeties body. He isn't fast enough for corner, and he isn't as physical as you like at Safety. He does have good hands, and has been the best Husky defender at garnering interceptions. I like him more as a solid role player than a starter. Wells covered up a lot of his inadequacies, and when he went down, the Husky defense started it's descent.
Harris is a feel good story because he came back from a potential career ending back injury. He had a good year after Wells went down, but he wasn't able to cover for Forrester like Wells had done earlier in the season. Like Forrester I think he is better suited as a reserve role player even though he was solid last season. I would rate him higher than Mesphin based on his play last season.
Physically these guys are a step above the guys that are ahead of them. The question is after a year in the program can they push for starting jobs against three seniors?
If Washington is going to improve at the Safety position in 2008 this guy has to be able to beat out Forrester, and Harris for the starting Safety spot next to Jason Wells. We all know what those two guys can do, and they aren't going to get that much better. The key to improvement is Williams asserting himself and taking over the job. I thought Nate played well in nickel and dime situations last year. He picked up a lot of experience, and that should give him a big boost in 2008. One thing that will help Nate, and the other young challengers is a full year in the program getting stronger, faster, and smarter. When you know what you are doing you can let your instincts, and athletic ability take over. the game should slow down for Nate in 2008, and I look for him to be a starter.
Victor should have redshirted last year, but the lack of depth forced Washington to play him early. He spent most of his time getting used to the speed of the game on special teams. Aieywa is an impressive athlete who doesn't have a lot of HS experience behind him. He does however have the ability to stick people. Vic has been a quick study and the Husky coaches are excited about him. He has really good size/numbers, and we should see a lot of growth this Spring from this kid. He could always grow out of the position and move to LB depending on how the Huskies line up, but I think he sticks at Safety.
The coaching staff was pleased to find out that Richardson was a lot faster than they thought he would be coming in. Most thought he would start off at safety then gravitate to linebacker, but what was even more surprising was how fast he was going backwards. That reverse speed will earn him a shot at both Safety, and Cornerback this Spring. Richardson is a big physical kid that can really lay some lumber. I expect a lot of people to be talking about him this Spring no matter which position he lines up at. This is a kid that is ready to challenge for playing time at either S, CB, or LB.
I really like this part of the recruiting class. You have three really talented kids that can play multiple positions. At least one of the class will play right away, maybe more depending if players above them switch positions.
I like this kid, I really do, and even though Willingham says he is going to start off at Tailback I think he makes the move to Safety as quickly in camp as Nate Williams did last season. I even think he has a chance to play right away. He was the state player of the year for all classifications, and I saw a youtube video which detailed the top hits of washington prep players and he was just a stud. Johri had the hit of the year. He also has a nice presence on the field no matter where he lines up. He also has a little brother at O'Dea who is currently a sophomore who has a standing Husky offer. Johri could push for immediate playing time if needed.
Vince is a good looking athlete with room to grow on either side of the ball. He has great size, speed and intelligence. He was an earlier commit but was covetted by schools up and down the coast. coaches like his potential, and he could play WR, or S if needed. I think Vince is another kid that could play right away if they need him.
Walker is a ferocious hitter from a smaller school down by San Diego. He is a classmate of Husky CB recruit Adam Long. Walker played both middle linebacker and running back for St. Bernard last season totalling 120 tackles, five sacks, two interceptions and four forced fumbles. Was named All-League and all-Area and All-CIF for Playa Del Rey (Calif.) St. Bernard. Walker will play safety at UW. Greg isn't quite as fast as Ferguson, and Taylor, he doesn't have as much size either, but he is a thumper.
Byron Davenport, Jordan Murchison, Matt Mosley, Vonzell McDowell, and Marquis Persley return from last years much maligned Husky defense. Davenport is a lock to start, but wasn't healthy much last season. The other spot is completely wide open with all four players plus Safety Quinton Richardson getting a shot.
The Huskies bring in Justin Glenn, Anthony Gobern, and Adam Long to compliment the existing cast giving the defensive backfield the most depth they have had in a decade.
UW needs some serious improvement at this position if they want to go anywhere next year. As I said they finally have depth, they have a little experience, but the young talent has to rise.
I really think everyone is a challenger for this position, but Davenport has an edge over the other guys going into the Spring. Another interesting factor will be Quinton Richardson who will get a look-see over here too.
I thought Davenport was a good addition when healthy, the trouble was he wasn't healthy very much in 2007. Expect him to reverse the trend in 2008 with a full year in the program to condition. His nagging injuries really hurt the defense last year when the Huskies had to go with younger players to fill in. The UCLA transfer will be a senior in 2008.
Four to five men plus a bevy of freshmen will compete for the spot opposite Davenport.
Like Davenport his presence was missed on the field in 2007. Jordan's problem wasn't health, it was the law. He was suspended from the team for the first half of the year, but he worked his way into the lineup over the last few games. Jordan is a senior with good tools, but little on the field experience. He can be a player, and he will get his chance this Spring
I don't know how comfortable Matt is playing CB. He is a good football player, and he gained some valuable experience under fire at the position last season. I like his aggression, and he played the run better than most of the returning cast. Matt came to UW as RB/WR/DB. He is part of one of the greatest legacies in Husky history being a member of the Carr family from Tacoma.
Vonzell walked in and because of injuries started for the Huskies from day one. That starting job didn't last too long, he lost it after the Ohio State game. Vonzell wasn't ready for the schedule the Huskies played last year. He was picked on all year, but he did have some good moments. I think a year in the weight room is going to make this kid more effective in 2008.
Marquis was one of those guys that tempted the coaches late in the season even though he was redshirting. It was obvious that he was making strides in practice after he got familar witht he defense. The coaches like his size, and they fell he will be a very good, and physical cornerback in the near future. Keep an eye on him this Spring because he has a good chance to move up in the roatation.
Long seems to be the guy with the best chance to play right away according the coaches.
Justin has the potential to be a very good CB. The Huskies were on this kid for awhile, and he ended up being an early commit. according to Scout, Glenn supports the run well. He is aggressive and physical and always seems around the ball. Glenn plays against the pass well too, showing the ability to turn and run with receivers. He is more prepared to play right away than Vonzell McDowell was last season, but I am betting he redshirts.
Anthony rushed for 846 yards and 13 touchdowns. Defensively, he had 36 tackles and 5 interceptions. Goburn is really fast, and he was handpicked by Coach Williams to play in his secondary.
Long finished his senior season with over 900 yards and 17 touchdowns while posting over 50 tackles and one interception on defense. He will play CB at Washington and he was also recruited by Cal, and UCLA. What attracted West coast coaches to Long last year was his great speed. Husky coaches have already said he will play right away in 2008. He has really nice speed and size for corner.
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Below is a link to Nathan's comments.
I'm beginning to wonder how long UW is willing to wait out the legislative process. They aren't getting money this year and I think it's very unlikely that they'll get money next year. There are too many factors working against them, i.e. recession fears, etc.
However, time might be on the school's side because the liability grows every year and maybe the state will be forced to help out if the stadium gets worse. That's a big "maybe".
Selling the name of Husky Stadium?
You hate to see it, but it might be a key piece of the funding neccesary to get it going. One thing has been missing in all this, and that is a solid plan presented to the public, and any effort to raise funds privately from donors.
The Husky basketball team tries to salvage the basketball season in the Bay area this week playing Stanford, and California. I have no idea if they will show up or not after Saturdays game against ASU. They do seem to respond best with their back against the wall.
Spring Practice will start in April 3rd and wind up with the Spring game on April 26th. Teams only get 15 practices during the Spring with twelve being in pads. the Spring game wil coencide with lots of activities going on around campus.
UW baseball split a 4-game series at UC-Riverside over the weekend.
Ted Miller is leaving the PI to take a position at ESPN. I am going to miss Ted because he was probably the most knowledgable college football guy in the Northwest. Jim Moore will be stepping up to fill his void which is scary.
Terence Thomas's mother's condition has improved, thanks for all the prayers sent in that direction.
Pac Ten Alley
Once again it is time to take a walk down the coast to see what the neighbors are up to.
This week we check in with Addicted to Quack to see what is going on. They have something in common with Michael Wines blog, not much going on as the Oregon basketball team is fighting with Washington for eight place. I will say one nice thing about the Duck basketball team and that they are doing extremely well academically which is very nice to see in college hoops, and a credit to coach Ernie Kent.
Dear God, these jerseys are beyond bad. Lets salvage some pride and get the Bruins.
Seattle native Trent Johnson gets a well deserved extension at Stanford.
Stanford athletic director Bob Bowlsby confirmed via email Monday afternoon that a contract extension is in the works for Trent Johnson, whose five-year deal was set to expire after next season. I wrote a short news story for the Tuesday edition of the Mercury News (will provide the link here when it’s available), but I wanted to add a few thoughts and open the Hotline comment boards to the subject. Casual Stanford fans might not have realized that Johnson was approaching the final year of his deal, or that his future on The Farm was even an issue.
Arizona's basketball team is fading, but the Wildcats are cheering for Antoine Cason's performance at the NFL combine.
University of Arizona Jim Thorpe Award winner Antoine Cason might have added to his list of accomplishments at the NFL combine. Cason went to Indianapolis wanting to prove himself, and show a solid 40-yard dash time. It appears a corner, slated by most prognostications to be a first or second round pick, did just that. “Cason pleasantly surprised scouts, running his 40s in the high 4.4-second range,” The Sporting News wrote on the final day of the Combine when mentioning the “Risers.”
California is making some progress towards their athletic facility renovation plan. They have all the money they need to get it done by the way.
Lawyers challenging UC Berkeley’s plans for a gym next to Memorial Stadium must produce expert evidence to back their claim that the two buildings are really one. That was the ruling Wednesday by Alameda County Superior Court Judge Barbara J. Miller, upholding a directive she issued in December. Attorneys for the City of Berkeley and neighborhood and environmental groups challenging the university’s plans had contested the order, which had been supported by the university’s lawyers.
It's baseball season once again in Corvallis, but the Beavers are off to slow start battling the nations best in the Demarini Invitational. ASU is the team to beat in the Pac Ten this season.
Game 1 vs. No. 3 Vanderbilt Highly ranked Vanderbilt started the game with three runs in the first two innings, and didn't look back from there. Oregon State's bats were asleep for most of the game, as the Beavers only had five hits total, three of them coming in the one-run sixth inning. Mike Stutes started on the mound, and went 4 innings, giving up four runs. Final Score: Vanderbilt 8, Oregon State 1.
The noose is tightening for Reggie Bush and USC. The question of course is whether the NCAA will have the courage to do something about it.
Attorneys for former USC Heisman Trophy-winning running back Reggie Bush have asked that his deposition in a lawsuit brought against him by San Diego businessman and sports marketing agent Lloyd Lake not be shared with the NCAA and the media, according to a papers filed in Superior Court in San Diego Friday. Also in the court papers, Bush's attorneys have asked that their motion for a protective order and motion to quash be heard May 2, or soon thereafter, an attempt to further postpone Bush's deposition. Bush failed to appear Monday for his scheduled deposition.
Things are going well for ASU in just about every sport as we near Spring.
It was a successful weekend for the Sun Devils. Both men's and women's basketball teams beat Washington this weekend and the #1 ranked baseball team opened the season by sweeping the DeMarini Invitational.
At UCLA it is just a matter of time till Rick whips out his guitar.
One thing I noticed during the first two months of UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel's tenure is how different he is, not to mention comfortable, in the public spotlight when compared to former coach Karl Dorrell.When not out recruiting, Neuheisel is at every basketball game, chatting with fans, shaking nearly everyone's hand and holding court with a group of people. During halftime of Saturday's game against Oregon, Neuheisel was along one of the baseline chatting with a close circle of boosters.By contrast, I rarely saw Dorrell at basketball games, could never remember him holding court with people nearby and rarely was approachable for interviews in the offseason.
Tony Bennett seems to be the leading candidate to take over at Indiana if he is willing. Hmmm....WSU or Indiana? It really isn't that simple because it isn't exactly Bobby Knight's Indiana anymore. It is one thing to take over for Johnny Carson, and another thing to take over for Jay Leno. Whoever takes over at Indiana will have probation to deal with. Kelvin Sampson had it made, too bad he couldn't play by the rules.
What I wonder about is what are Tony's ultimate goals? Withers lays out the idea of how father Dick stuck it out for a long time at WISC-Stevens Point and WISC-GB before finally getting to Wisconsin. Maybe there is something to the idea of building and learning something of substance at your current situation, and only move on when you've learned what is to be learned and experienced everything that you can?
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Starbucks is closing the doors at its 7,100 stores across America for a brief barista re-education.
CEO Howard Schultz announced the 3-hour closure starting at 5:30 p.m. local time Tuesday to energize 135,000 employees. He wants baristas to share their passion for making espresso, or as he says, "to pull the perfect shot, steam milk to order and customize their favorite beverage."
At age 49 on the Husky sideline during a California game on the road he suffered a disected a aorta which was similar to the trauma which ended actor John Ritter's life a couple of years ago. Miraculously Myles was able to survive because of the close proximity of some of the best surgeons in the country over at the UC medical center.
Our prayers go out to Myles, and his family.
Molly Yanity is Back
Molly Yanity of the PI has been taking some time off but is now back again writing about Husky football. Today she wrote a very nice article about new Husky DC Ed Donatell.
But Donatell sees a program that has known success and a city and university that should attract talented players. He anticipates a successful Huskies defense, though it allowed a program-worst 446.6 yards per game in 2007.
Like any Willingham assistant Donatell isn't tipping his hand at this point. He is just observing his players in person, in the weight room, and on film. One chord on defense seems to ring through and that is the Huskies need better talent on that side of the ball. Two good back to back recruiting years are helping in that goal, and I expect to see some of the younger players get credible shots this Spring. One player that has caught his eye is Daniel Teo Nesheim who is emerging as one of the team leaders for 2008. Daniel has always caught the eyes of the coaches since the first day he stepped on campus because he has a fine motor that never stops.
The Husky basketball team suffered a crushing loss to ASU on Saturday, but they can still are possible post season participants based on what they do over the next three games.
Unfortunately all three games are on the road against Cal, Stanford, and WSU which all beat Washington earlier this season at home. I am not counting them out though even if it is a hard hill to climb. The Arizona, and UCLA wins show that on any given night this team can steal a win against the better teams in the conference when they are in sync.
Monday, February 25, 2008
What is wrong with this team? First of all they can't shoot very well, and when they do shoot they have terrible shot selection. Second of all they don't move the ball around very well, and can't seem to find the open man.
For example Ryan Appleby would be isolated alone across the court many times and the Huskies simply couldn't whip the ball around to find him on the outside. Ryan is the Huskies one outside threat, but he needs to be set comfortably to be accurate. Washington has done a poor job all season getting him the ball in the right sitation, and setting screens, and picks to get him free.
Defensively the Huskies can be strong inside led by Brockman, but too often opposing guards are able to run free because Appleby is a defensive liability. He simply doesn't have the speed, or agility to keep up with Pac Ten giards who just happen to be among the best in the country this year. As for Brockman I love what this guy brings, but he doesn't shoot very well either.
Finally there is foul shooting. The Huskies are the worst foul shooting team in the conference, a maybe the country. I have never seen a worse foul shooting team. Almost every kid goes to the line with poor form which changes on every attempt, and that for the most part has to do with coaching. Obviously these kids arrived with the problem, but it hasn't been close to being solved since they arrived.
I don't think heart and effort are the problems at all. This team plays hard, but their record simply reflects the amount of talent presently on the team. Saturdays game was just painful to watch because they simply aren't that good.
What can they solve these problems?
Venoy Overton is going to be a very good player in the future. We saw him take over the game against Arizona, and once he matures he will be one of the better point guards in the conference. Leadership is another problem, and I think once again as Venoy matures he will be able to help out in that respect. We also get another year from Brockman who can just dominate on the inside.
The one thing about college basketball is that with early entry the playing field will change dramatically next year in the conference. This years stars for the most part will be gone and playing in the NBA. UW is bringing in a very strong class led by prep school phenom Isaiah Thomas. Thomas can shoot the ball, he can pass the ball, and he can drive to the hoop in a way we haven't seen since Nate Robinson. In addition to Thomas the Huskies add Suggs, Turner, and Breshers who are all going to be a significant upgrade to the roster in 2008-2009.
All this being said this season is still not over. Even with the loss to ASU the Huskies are still not eliminated from the big dance. All they have to do is beat Stanford, Cal, and WSU over the next two weeks and they have a shot. I forgot to mention that in the first go round we lost to those three teams, in fact we were only competitive against WSU, and all three game are on the road.
There isn't much to comment about this week since there has been absolutely nothing of substance coming out of Montlake which is no surprise. The Huskies still have an open coaching slot, but not a single name has popped up yet. The coaches have been recruiting for 2009, and they have made over twenty offers so far. These are the type of offers that go to the top players in the country every year. Locally Desmond Trufant, and DeAndre Coleman are the first kids with Husky offers.
In a sad note the mother of Husky recruit OT Terence Thomas suffered a very severe stroke and is in very rough shape. This is terrible news for the Thomas family, and she is only 43 years old. Lets all pray for her speedy recovery. I picked this up from the Dawgman recruiting board, and it was posted by Terence's father. He and his wife have been married for 22 years.
Saturday, February 23, 2008
27-19 with 6:00 left in the first. Brockman is not having a good game tonight. He is turning the ball over, traveling, forsing shots, and getting burned on defense. The Huskies are staying close enough to make a run. One more note....I don't think I have ever seen a worse foul shooting team....they just throw it up there with little if any consistent form. Isn't that coaching?
The Huskies ratchet up the defense in the final minutes and get back into the game as the second half closes trailing 32-26.
The second half opens with both teams trading shots as both teams shoot better in the second stanza. 40-34 ASU with 17:23 left in the game. 12:00 left in the game and the Sun Devil lead has been fluctuating between 6-11 points. Washington is still turning the ball over too much and not shooting very well. ASU on top 50-39.
ASU ran the lead up to 17 points, but the Huskies have come back. 7:33 left as Tim Morris fouls out of the game in his final home appearance as a Husky. The Huskies are making a serious run at the Sun Devils trailing 59-51. The key like the end of the first half is UW has stepped up the pressure. UW is still missing to many shots from the field.
Friday, February 22, 2008
Yes 40% (17 votes)
No 60% (26 votes)
The majority of our readers don't think funding will be approved this legislative session for Husky Stadium. Today's report in the PI seems to back up your guesses.
A proposal for $150 million in state funding to help renovate Husky Stadium isn't yet dead in the water in Olympia, but it's not making many waves, according to UW director of state relations Randy Hodgins.
This weeks question :
Will the Husky Basketball Team make the Big Dance?
Despite being two games under .500 in conference play the Huskies still have a good shot if they can finish the season 3-1.
UCLA, Stanford, and WSU are assured of participating in March Madness, but behind them a big scramble has developed for what looks will be the three remaining spots.
Washington finishes with Arizona State at home, Stanford, California, and WSU on the road. The Huskies have a half way decent chance of finishing 3-1 which would allow them to finish with a 9-9 conference record, and 18-13 on the season. They would still need a strong finish in the Pac Ten tournament probably to get in.
UW beat Arizona State on the road so I think they are more than capable of handling them at home. The Dawgs need to gain at least a split in the Bay Area, and then pull the upset in Pullman. The Huskies and the Cougars played close to a draw to open the season in Seattle with the Cougars overcoming the Dawgs in the last couple minutes of the game. Cal and Stanford dominated Washington at home a few weeks ago, and UW needs to come out with the same type of fire they had in their bellies last night to gain at least a split on the road.
UCLA 11-2 / 23-3
Stanford 10-3 / 21-4
Washington State 9-5 / 21-5
USC 7-6 / 16-9
Arizona State 6-7 / 16-9
California 6-7 / 15-9
Arizona 6-7 / 16-10
Oregon 6-8 / 15-11
Washington 6-8 / 15-12
Oregon State 0-14 / 6-20
Thursday, February 21, 2008
Next up is Arizona State which went down in Pullman tonight 59-47.
Heading into Spring the Huskies will be led by Curtis Shaw, D'Andre Goodwin, and Alvin Logan who only have 11 career receptions between them. Anthony Boyles, Devin Aguilar, and Chris Polk joined the squad this Winter and will be playing for the first time this Spring. Talented walkon Charles Hawkins returns for his senior year and will be the old man of the group. In the Fall they will be joined by the highly touted Jermaine Kearse, Cody Bruns, and Jordan Polk, who are all capable of contributing right away. At TE heralded recruits Chris Izbicki, and Kavario Middleton will join the rotation, and give UW a chance to reclaim the title Tight End University.
Why am I so excited about a group with virtually no experience?
Chris Polk, Jordan Polk, D'Andre Goodwin, and Curtis Shaw have something you can't teach, and that is pure breakaway speed. The other new kids are a little slower, but are faster than the kids who graduated. Washington hasn't had this much speed in over a decade at these positions.
Talent and Athleticism
Curtis Shaw started playing receiver mid season, and while he has a lot to learn he was probably our most complete receiver at the end of the season. He was the only on the team that really knew how to instinctively come back for the ball. Have you seen the film on Aguilar, Boyles, J. Polk, Bruns, and Kearse? These kids did some amazing things with the ball in high school. One thing stands out and that is all these kids know how to get to the ball. I believe this is the most talented group of WR's that have been seen in Montlake since the early 1990's. As far as talent and potential goes it is the difference between night in day when you compare it to last years squad.
Attitude and Coachability
The previous group of WR's played under how many head coaches, and position coaches? How many games did they win exactly while they were here? Do you think that might have retarded whatever development they were capable of? Do you think it might have affected their confidence, attitude, and work ethic? Did they ever really get better as a group? The advantage you have with these young guys is that they should be receptive to coaching. These are all Ty's kids, and they were recruited for character first.
Curtis Shaw was a highly recruited running back with track speed. The coaches noticed he had excellent hands and intincts so they moved him over to wide receiver after the bye week. Curtis wasn't perfect but he showed enough talent to make the move permanent. Husky fans saw a different dimension when the ball was thrown to him. He seemed more athletic than the rest of the receivers, and he also made the great adjustments to the ball in the air. Count on Curtis to have a big year in 2008, and if Johnson goes down at TB he couls see some quality time there also.
D'Andre sat out his first year to get bigger and stronger. The man nicknamed the "Flea" became one of UW's end around men last year. The deep passing game didn't materialize much last year as Jake had work to do on his accuracy. D'Andre only caught five passes on the year, but he did get plenty of time running routes in the rotation. Last year he was the low man on the Totem Pole, this year he will get the chance to make an impact as a sophomore. You just might see him returning kicks this Fall in addition to his WR duties.
Alvin redshirted last season, but could have played if needed. Logan has the potential to be the most physical receiver on the squad. If not for a late defection by another player last recruiting season he might have ended up at Safety. Alvin is 6'2 190 and ran 4.5 40 in HS which means he also has pretty good speed. I think the strongest contribution he will make besides passing the ball is blocking down field. Down field blocking is something that they have been trying to improve, but they didn't quite get there with the last group of receivers.
He was the crown jewel of last years recruiting class and he was scheduled to hit the field immediately. He has good size at 6'3 185, but observers feel he lost some weight while sitting out, he will need to build some strenght between now and next Fall. Anthony ran a recorded time of 4.5 when in HS so he is another big fast quick target for Jake to throw at. the thing that stands out from his film is how incredible an athlete he is. The guy makes incredible plays, and he was potentially better than any receiver UW had on the roster last season.
Devin is the other Winter enrollee and he is one of the biggest stars to ever leave the state of Colorado. He was Gatorade player of the year, and he made the list of the top 50 HS players ever from the state of Colorado. Aguilar is 6'1, 185 and runs a 4.45 fourty which is extremely fast. What sets him apart though is he is great player who runs very disciplined routes. Like Boyles he was potentially better than any other receiver on the Washington roster last season.
Chris is a member of the 2008 class who was able to enroll this winter to get a head start. In a start studded class he was arguably the top recruit Washington brought in last season. It isn't every day that you get a kid to decommit from USC to come to Washington. If you watch film on Chris you realize that we haven't had an athlete like this on campus since the early 1990's. He may start off at RB, but like Curtis Shaw he is just too good to keep on the bench behind Brandon Johnson who should own the starting TB job for the next three years. Like Curtis he can play either position, and they will probably give him a shot at both to see what he can do. If Johnson goes down it gives them another option. Personally Chris wants to be a WR, he feels that is where his future lies, kids usually play where they want with Willingham. He will be one hombre I will be keeping a serious eye on during the Spring game.
Lakes HS Coach Dave Miller feels that Jermaine may end up being the best receiver that he has ever coached, and that is saying a lot since he also coached Reggie Williams. He isn't nearly as big as Reggie, and he might not be quite as fast, but he may be a lot more coachable and willing to work to get better. What Kearse does is run disciplined routes and catch the ball. QB's are very comfortable throwing to him, and he is a candidate to play right away if needed in 2008. At 6'2 175 he may need to add a little muscle before next Fall to be able to effectively get off the line, and block downfield.
This guy may be the most celebrated pass catcher in quite awhile from the State of Washington. He isn't fast, and he isn't big, but he is a Dave Janoski type of guy who can catch the ball. UW needs those type of guys especially when you remember how many drives were killed last year by dropped balls. Cody is only 5'11, and 170 pounds, with a 4.65 fourty. He could probably use a year judging by those numbers to build some muscle, but this kid isn't about the numbers. This kid is all about catching the ball and he may surprise you by playing a lot next year because of the quality routes he runs. His level of production is unprecedented in high school football as he set a national record for receptions with 304 catches for 5,080 yards and 72 touchdowns.
I saw a lot of film this Winter and Jordan's highlight tape might have been my favorite. This kid is fast, lightning fast, plus he has the ability to make acrobatic catches. He is only 5'10, 170 so like Bruns he is a possible candidate for a year of seasoning. That being said the race for WR slots is wide open next season, the best will play period, and if he is among the best they are going to use him. He reminds me a lot of Mario Bailey.
Chris was the big local catch in the 2007 at 6'4, 240 with a 4.70 he was among the highest rated HS TE's in the country that year. Suprisingly enough despite the fact that UW has the most mediocre TE corps in memorable history he redshirted his first season. There was a reason for that, it was blocking, and blocking takes muscle. Chris needed a year to get stronger and learn technique. Keep an eye on Chris this Spring, they are going to give him every chance to win the starting job. Willingham says he is the complete package. They don't currently have a player on the Spring roster who can do all the things he can do.
Kavario is the highest rated player in the 2008 class. At 6'6 240, and running 4.75 fourty he represent the future big mobile target that Jake will start relying on in 2008. What makes him special is his ability to get up in the air and play much bigger than his 6'6 height. He is an excellent basketball player, and most great tight ends are really very good power forwards in disguise. This kid has NFL written all over him, and the only question going into 2008 will be his initial blocking ability. Unlike Izbicki I think they will play him early because he is too good of a receiving threat to keep on the bench for a year. Kavario just may be the best TE prospect to step on campus since Mark Breunner. Imagine a 6'6 guy who can hurdle defenders, and isn't afraid to go over the middle. That is what Kavario brings to the offense.
Analyzing The Departed
Take a quick look at the players who graduated this past season, Anthony Russo, Corey Williams, Marcel Reese, Quinton Daniels, Cody Ellis, and TE Rob Lewis. Which one of these guys are you going to miss in 2008? I mean no offense, but is there a single guy there whose performance in 2007 excited you?
Anthony Russo was a kid that got better every single season, was never a problem, and made some big plays here and there. He was also a guy that wasn't going to break many plays, or get many yards after the catch. Reese had great size, and good speed to match, but he was never all that polished. Daniels was injured most of his career. Ellis played sparingly even though I thought he had good hands. Lewis who was one of Neu's athletes never really found a position to excel in even though he got some quality time as a junior at TE. Frankly, and once again no offense, but I don't think we are going to miss these guys at all despite the loss of experience.
I think from the get go this new group will come on like gangbusters. This class makes me think of the Mario Bailey's, Orlando McKay's. It makes me think of the days when we started lining up NFL TE's 4-5 deep. I really think these kids can be the foundation of something great starting in 2008.
While I was at O'Dea one of my schoolmates was Clint Richardson who was one of the most amazing athletes I ever had the privledge of watching close up. Over at neighboring Garfield and then at Seattle University I was aquainted with a guy named Keith Harrell who was also one of the all time great players in Washington history.
The most amazing athlete though that I ever watched at that time was a young woman by the name of Joyce Walker. Joyce was the greatest woman's basketball player to ever come out of this state, in fact she was good enough to have starred on any HS boys basketball team of that era if the rules would have allowed her to play. I remember watching her scrimmaging over at the old Green Lake gym and she was just marvelous, and more than held her own with the best men's basketball players of her day. If Joyce was just coming out today she would be on the cover of every sports magazine in the country, and an all star fixture in the WNBA, she was that good.
Fast forwarding to the future Joyce went to LSU, and then went on to be one of the first women to ever play for the Harlem Globe Trotters. Joyce eventually returned home, got into coaching and reached the pinacle in 2005 when her Garfield Bulldogs won the state championship.
She had a chance to move on to the next level which would have been as an assistant coach in division one basketball. The University of Washington wanted to give her that shot as late as last year, but undislosed personal problems, and illness prevented that from becoming a reality.
Today the Seattle Times ran an article today on her recent struggles that make you want to cringe. The Seattle Times has been very good at making people cringe lately. Joyce who once had substance abuse problems before cleaning up in 1990 has suffered a relapse and recently went back to rehab to take care of the problem. I don't know what to think of this article, once again it seems the Seattle Times is selling papers by pointing out the misery and mistakes of others. Once again they are focusing on a black athlete who is a local legend.
It is a very sad story with a potential happy ending because Joyce is seeking the care that she needs. Addiction is a terrible thing, and once your an addict, you are always an addict even if you stop being a user. Recovery and maintenance is a life long path that never truly ends for a person with substance abuse. Things may never be the same after she is finished getting healthy, she may never be allowed to coach the game she loves again at the HS level.
"I love purple and white," Walker says, scanning the championship pictures on the window of an office that used to be hers. "I don't know anything else."
Joyce is as much a part of the social fabric of the school, city, and neighborhood as anyone whoever attended school at that campus. She shares a legacy with other Garfield greats are such as musician and composer Quincy Jones. Joyce is part of the culture, and right or wrong in her past, she deserves a second chance to get it right. Joyce is the epitamy of what the struggle is like growing up in the inner city. She has risen to the greatest heights only to be pulled down by her inner demons. Joyce has a lot of teaching left in her about life, personal demons, and basketball.
Addiction is an illness. It should be treated as any illness, and it shouldn't have the stigma of tje Scarlet Letter that ends your professional life once you have had the courage to recover. People in general should also realize that the recovery is a life long process.
Let's all hope and pray that Joyce stays healthy and gets her second chance in the future, because of all the former students who have walked through the doors of Garfield HS she is among the most special, and gifted.
The Seattle Times
Sure there is a story here, Joyce is a local celebrity, and legend who had the great responsibility of being a high school coach. The article allows her to face her demons publically which is part of her 12 step recovery process. On the flip side the Times takes advantage of this tragic story by using it as another controversial vehicle to sell newspapers. Once again the target is an African American just as it was in the 2000 Rose Bowl series. You can't make excuses for the members of the 2000 team that screwed up, and you certainly can't make excuses for what has happened with Joyce. You can however wonder why the subjects of these recent stories are all black, and why local white athletes who have screwed up just as bad, or worse are simply deemed not as interesting a subject.
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
One thing that is going on is Randy Hart is leading the Mat Drills twice a week. Mat Drills are pure torture, and garbage cans are kept in the general proximity of the players so they have a place to barf.
The players are also working independently on their 7 on 7 drills. This is pretty important this year since it gives Jake Locker the opportunity to get used to his new, and talented receiving corps before the start of spring practice.
Jake also has reportedly been working out privately with Greg Barton in one of his QB clinics. Hopefully Jake picks up enough to improve his accuracy. The clinics are open to both HS, and college players. The Barton's hold them throughout the Northwest at various times through most of the year. Luther Leonard who will attend UW this Fall has also been a participant.
Oregon State interim coach Kevin Mouton said on the Pac-10 conference call today that he may take some disciplinary action against the players who were involved in some of the pre-game incidents last week before the Huskies beat the Beavers in Corvallis.
Finally a little buzz
Not exactly the buzz you want to hear because this girl has the chance to be very good. It isn't exactly surprising since she didn't want to come here after Daugherty was fired.
Jess McCormack, a promising 6-foot-5 freshman forward-center for the Washington women's basketball team, has decided to quit the Huskies to pursue playing opportunities elsewhere, coach Tia Jackson said Tuesday.
Most interesting to me is the common notion that six Pac-10 teams will get bids to the NCAA tournament. After breaking down the numbers, I think it's very possible that only 5 teams get bids. The impetus behind this statement is that precedent tells us that Pac-10 teams need a .500 or better record to get a bid. Additionally, it's difficult to get into the NCAA tournament if you have less than 20 wins. USC, Cal, ASU, and Oregon will have to win some big games down the stretch to achieve a .500 conference record and/or 20 wins.
The latest from Malamute
Malamute takes a look at past recruiting mistakes.
Pac Ten Alley
It is that time once again when we take a walk down the coast to see what the neighbors are up to.
We start with the Ducks who split with the Washington schools last week.
Oregon, which made 32 3-pointers and averaged 81.5 points in its two previous games, was held to four 3-pointers on 17 attempts and 25.9 points below its season scoring average despite shooting 49 percent from the field.
The Lopez twins have put Stanford in a position to possibly win the Pac Ten title.
So Stanford and Arizona break from a timeout with 29 seconds left and Brent starts talking about which Lopez is going to get the ball. I’m thinking, Which Lopez? Every human on the planet (and many non-humans) knew which Lopez is going to get the ball — the Lopez that always gets the ball. I’m also thinking, how bad can Musburger be? And then he gets worse. Next comes the biggest play of the game, and he blew it royally.
An Arizona freshman wins player of the week honors.
Arizona freshman guard Jerryd Bayless was selected the Pac-10 men's basketball player of the week after averaging 32.0 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 5.0 assists in games against Cal and Stanford. Bayless made 16 of 36 shots, including 5 of 13 3-point attempts. He made 26 of 28 free throws.
Jeff Tedford is all choked up about his recruiting class.
Jeff Tedford begins to speak, and you immediately can tell Cal's football coach is congested. He coughs every so often, confirming he's contracted a bad case of the flu. "I'm much better today," Tedford says. "You should have heard me yesterday."
Jake does an excellent job with the Oregon state blog, too bad he doesn't have much to work with this Winter.
After a strong performance against the LA schools three weeks ago and then a slump last week, Lathen Wallace returns to the top of the shooting chart again. He led the Beavers in shooting percentage when the Beavs played UCLA and USC in late January. It's good to see the former Jefferson High School star fight for his minutes and find a chance to score, especially because of Oregon State' shooting woes this season.
USC's Hazleton undergoes a very nasty surgery.
USC wide receiver Vidal Hazelton underwent surgery for two muscle tears in his stomach that bothered him most of last season. Hazelton played last season with what was thought to be a groin injury, but turned out to be multiple stomach tears. He is expected to be fully recovered for spring practice, which begins next month. The surgery was performed in Philadelphia by Dr. William Meyers of Drexel University. USC rarely sends an athlete to the Northeast for an operation, but Hazelton's family insisted the surgery be performed by an expert in abdominal surgery.
The fued continues to build in Arizona.
This Sun Devil dominance has left many cat fans clueless and unprepared (just like their degrees do- Zing!) for encounters with Sun Devil fans who have been basking in the glory of their recent success. Apparently Arizona Athletic Director Jim Livengood felt they should all be on the same page.
UCLA is trying to plug some holes in the defensive line this Spring.
Senior Nate Skaggs, who spent the last two seasons on the offensive line, is moving back to the defensive line during spring practice. He will be at defensive tackle. Skaggs began his career as a defensive tackle, but was moved to center for the 2005 Sun Bowl because of injuries and started the game. He was a reserve in 2006 and 2007, but is being shifted back to defense in an effort to bolster UCLA's defensive tackle depth. In 2005, Skaggs made two starts at defensive tackle, including the season opener at San Diego State. He appeared in seven games.
WSU is licking it's chops over the prospect of having another Trufant attend school in Pullman. The money though is on Desmond to attend UW.
As we bask in the glow of the Oregon win (more on that in a moment), some actual football recruiting buzz is starting to percolate. What do you know? Desmond Trufant has been making a name for himself down in Tacoma, and is drawing raves from all over. And I guess Wulff meant it when he said that right after signing day they are already working on next year's class. Wulff has already stepped up and offered Trufant a full ride (what a difference with this coaching staff?).
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Washington's planned $350 million dollar renovation will have the highest price tag to date of any new stadium, or renovation of an existing stadium.
These current schools are in either the planning or construction stages.
In 2009 Minnesota football will move into a new facility called TCF Bank Stadium. The 50,000 seat on-campus "horseshoe" style stadium is under construction and planned to be finished in time for the 2009 football season. The stadium will be designed to support future expansion to seat up to 80,000 people. The $288 million dollar project is being financed by corporate, alumni, boosters, and the state of Minnesota which ponied up about half of the cost.
Bright House Networks Stadium is a 45,301-seat stadium in Orlando, Florida which is the new on campus home of the Central Florida football team. Initially projected to have a cost of $40 to $45 million, the most recent cost estimations run as high as $55 million. It has been designed for a planned expansion to 65,000 seats.
Home to the University of Michigan football team, Michigan Stadium with its 100,000-plus capacity will forever be known to college football fans as The Big House. It's about to get even bigger. Adding to a storied history that began in the 1920s as a vision in the mind of program founder Fielding Yost, the current expansion of Michigan Stadium is only the most recent. The project, scheduled for an August 2010 completion, calls for a number of improvements and amenities. Some will actually steal from the stadium's capacity; others will add to it. In all, the Big House will hold more than 108,000 people, up from its current capacity of 107,501. cost of the project is supposed to run around $288 million.
Rutgers University officials have approved a controversial plan to start a $102-million football stadium expansion before securing all the money needed to complete it. The school is counting on Gov. Jon Corzine's pledge to raise $30 million from private sources for the plan, which calls for adding 14,000 seats, a dining club for high-end ticket-holders and new locker rooms. Starting the plan now requires the university to borrow $72 million to begin construction next month and complete the first phase of the expansion before the upcoming season. Supporters say the university needs to pursue the aggressive schedule to expand the 43,000-seat stadium to take advantage of the heightened interest in Rutgers football. After years of mediocrity, the Scarlet Knights have made three consecutive bowl appearances.
A new era is dawning for The University of Akron and its football program. At its regular meeting today, the University’s Board of Trustees approved the financing and construction plans for a $55 million, on-campus football stadium as part of the second phase of the New Landscape for Learning campus enhancement initiative. Construction of the stadium and field — named InfoCision Stadium and Summa Field, respectively — is scheduled to be complete for the Zips’ 2009 home opener against the University of Kentucky Wildcats on Sept. 12. As in other buildings constructed in UA’s ongoing campus enhancement, the stadium features a bold design of brick and glass. The stadium will be financed by a $30 million fund-raising campaign (of which $21 million already has been pledged) and bonds financed via stadium revenues.
The University of Maryland Athletics Department unveiled plans yesterday for a $50.8 million expansion to Byrd Stadium, a project that will increase overall capacity, add skyboxes complete with catered food and flat panel televisions and lower the field to give spectators a better view. The past decade has seen the evolution of Byrd with the construction of Tyser Towers in 1990, Gossett Football Team House in 1991 and the addition of the upper deck on the north side in 1994. Most recently, there was the remodeling of the team house in 2003. Athletics Department officials have been looking for ways to increase capacity for years, but money for the major expansion came only after Chevy Chase Bank agreed to pay $20 million in August for naming rights to the stadium, which has been dubbed Chevy Chase Bank Field at Byrd Stadium until 2032 when the deal expires.
For those Illinois faithful waiting for that one special opportunity to forever alter the course of the University of Illinois through their generous donations, the Illinois Renaissance presents many tremendous options. Perhaps none, however, is quite as powerful as naming the entire media/hospitality facility that will adorn the renovated stadium’s west balcony. As discussed in more depth throughout this brochure, the Memorial Stadium Pavilion’s three levels will house the 77 Club, the Memorial Stadium Suites, the press area, and University administration. The advantages it will afford the University of Illinois will be boundless. To the University in general, it will provide event space usable throughout the year; it will serve as a hospitality venue for visiting officials and University benefactors on Illini football Saturdays; and it will set the national standard for combining historic architecture and modern science. For the Illini football program, the new facility will serve as a boon to recruiting by demonstrating the University’s commitment to the future of Illinois football; it will provide a media outlet allowing comprehensive nationwide coverage of the Illini; and it will serve as an imposing feature of Memorial Stadium’s home-field advantage. The family or business naming the entire three-story facility will drastically change the landscape of the University of Illinois and Illini football for the better.
Royal-Memorial Stadium's north entrance will be expanded with a new multi-level complex that includes additional seats, club space, suites, athletic offices, academic-advising areas and a basement with gym space. Expansion plans are already in place for the north end zone, which will feature and upper deck, club seating, an academic center and a war memorial plaza for the 2008 season. The expansion is expected to increase the stadium’s capacity to over 90,000, and add approximately 2,000 club seats and 44 suites. More immediately, two major upgrades have been made for the 2006 season, including a new video board and temporary bleacher seating in the south end zone, which has expanded the stadium's capacity by over 4,000 seats to a total of 85,123
Prior to the 2006 season, Maryland Athletics entered into a partnership with Chevy Chase Bank for naming rights for the field. The ongoing commitment with Chevy Chase Bank will allow the university to add suites to its seating opportunities on the south side of the stadium. The current expansion project is scheduled to begin in November 2007. Phase One includes the expansion of Tyser Tower along the South concourse, allowing for the addition of 64 suites. Additionally, mezzanine seating for approximately 500 will be added, as well as a University suite for 200 guests. There will also be new work areas for the television, radio and print media, new work area for coaches and gameday staff, a new gameday merchandise outlet, improved seating for disabled customers and a new state-of-the-art scoreboard on the west concourse. The refurbishing of Byrd includes new restrooms, bleachers and the stadium’s first formal entranceway off of Field House Drive. The Gossett Football Team House, Tyser Tower, concession stands, restrooms and stadium portals, designed by H.O.K. Architects of Kansas City, are enclosed in sand-molded brick that matches the Williamsburgstyle brick used on most of Maryland’s 335 buildings. The brick gives the contemporary architecture a timeless veneer and unity with the university’s traditional Georgian look.
The Deacon Tower phase at Wake Forest will dramatically change the look, feel, and comfort of its on campus football stadium.
In what is certainly an ambitious undertaking, athletics officials at Texas A&M are working with architects to devise a master facilities plan that includes an expansion of Kyle Field to a capacity of 115,000 seats. According to an article in the San Antonio Business Journal, architectural firm O'Connell Robertson & Associates Inc. presented to the university's Board of Regents a plan that included six decks of new seating, new fan concourses, and a major cosmetic facelift.
Texas Tech's football stadium will grow by 10,000 seats -- including those in 19 new luxury suites -- in construction approved Friday by the school's board of regents for a $45 million expansion. The project is contingent on the athletic department securing the money, of which as much as $20 million would be in gifts, Athletic Director Gerald Myers said. The east side expansion would include a 1,080-car parking garage, 300 club seats, a 5,500-seat upper deck and 4,500 seats in each of the stadium's four corners, bringing its capacity to just more than 63,000. The parking garage could be done by 2007 and the upper deck by the 2009 season.
Plans are continuing for an expansion of Bryant-Denny Stadium's South end zone, which would increase capacity in the University of Alabama's football stadium to approximately 101,000.
University officials began looking into the project as ticket sales exceeded capacity this season. The university, under president Robert Witt, is rapidly growing and the hiring of new coach Nick Saban also boosted interest in the football program. Crimson Tide athletic director Mal Moore, in town on Monday evening to speak to the Montgomery Quarterback Club, outlined a planned expansion of the South end zone in his comments about recent facility upgrades made by the university.
Construction on a $35.9 million project to replace the cramped press box and add luxury suites at stadium could be the first piece of a major expansion to the 30,000-seat stadium, where Boise State has lost just twice since 2001. The addition of suites, club sections and loge boxes will add about 2,000 seats, increasing the stadium's capacity to 32,000. The athletic department presented its plans Monday to the board at its monthly meeting in Boise -- the same day the Broncos achieved their highest ranking ever in The Associated Press Top 25 poll, finishing the season at No. 5 and as the only undefeated Division I-A team in the country. The school expects to complete the renovations before the start of the 2008 football season. The press box and luxury seat renovations should be the first phase of a larger stadium expansion that increases the stadium's capacity to more than 40,000 seats, head coach Chris Peterson told a booster's meeting Monday. "That press box is awesome, but I've got to tell you, I've already moved past that," The Idaho Statesman quoted Petersen as saying. "I'm on to how we're going to expand the stadium." A continued plan to add thousands more seats, perhaps in the north corners of the stadium facing downtown, or the horseshoe opening at the south end zone, could go before the board in the next two years. But Peterson said that depends on selling out every home game next season.
University of Louisville announced a bold vision for expanding Papa John's Cardinal Stadium . The plan calls for expanding the stadium to 63,600 seats with an upper deck and 75 luxury boxes. Under the new plan, the stadium would be expanded another 21,000 seats in an upper deck of seating, 45 new luxury suites and 2,000 more loge seats with a walkway connecting the two sides of the stadium around the closed end zone nicknamed the "Crunch Zone".
The most recent expansion started in 2004 and will continue through at least 2009. The first phase of the "WestZone" project closed in the west endzone of Death Valley, added new luxury box and club seating, and completely renovated the locker rooms. The second phase, which is under construction, will bring all football offices and team meeting rooms to the WestZone from the McFadden Building, among other improvements.
Martin Stadium will begin a major renovation project following completion of the 2006 football season. In the spring of 2006, the Associated Students of Washington State University (ASWSU) approved a measure to finance $10 million of the estimated $70 million cost of the multi-phase renovation. Pending finances, renovation could be completed as early as 2009. Among the plans for renovation are added seating capacity, improved amenities and new press boxes and luxury suites. Following the renovation, a new seating capacity of 43,000 is expected at the end of the first phase.
In February 2005, Chancellor Robert Birgeneau announced plans to renovate Memorial Stadium, improving the existing facilities, adding a sports complex and providing new facilities for various university departments and programs as part of a huge development program for the east campus area. The first phase of the renovations were slated to take place during the spring and summer of 2006 but were stopped by a court injunction due to three lawsuits against the project. A small group of tree-sitters occupied the oak grove on the west side of the stadium beginning on the "Big Game" day in December 2006. construction on the stadium and an adjacent Athletic center have been tied up in the courts ever since.
Depending on what ultimately is recommended, the estimated cost of the Sun Devil Stadium work ranges between $52 million and $150 million. Even the high estimate is considerably less than the value of Sun Devil Stadium ($260 million) and the $288 million cost of the new University of Minnesota stadium. Any work done on Sun Devil Stadium would be performed during the offseason over a period of five years or longer, so the team could continue to play in the stadium during construction. ASU officials said they are exploring a variety of funding possibilities including private contributions and corporate sponsorships, and additional revenue generating events in the stadium. University officials have been speaking with the leadership of Tempe to explore possible partnerships with the city.
The Rose Bowl is an 83 year-old stadium with maintenance requirements that can be expected to increase each year. It operates at an annual net loss and is subsidized by revenue from Brookside Golf Course operations. The Tournament hosts the Rose Bowl game each year, which produces the largest single contribution of revenue to Rose Bowl operations, maintenance, and improvements. At the same time, the long-term relationship with UCLA is critical to the future of the stadium. The Tournament's lease with the City expires in 2019, while UCLA's lease with the RBOC expires in 2023. The replacement of all seating in the Rose Bowl is a project priority. Seating capacity would remain sufficient, however, to accommodate all existing events (temporary seating for the Rose Bowl game and the UCLA versus USC game would still be provided as it is today). Upon completion of the project, seating in the Rose Bowl would include general seating, club seating, and luxury suite seating. Different levels of amenities would be provided for each type of seating.
Future expansion of the stadium includes possibly enclosing the east end zone, the addition of a new press box and suites, the addition of a six story building for office space, player’s lounge, lockerooms, classrooms, and meeting rooms, and the addition of an upper deck on the stadium‘s south side. Upon completion, the stadium’s capacity would increase to over 60,000 under this plan.
Take a drive on Florida's Turnpike, and before approaching the Southwest 8th Street exit, glance toward the east and you will see the beacon for a new era at Florida International University. The east end zone seats and club suites rising above the west side of the university are one part of FIU's ''jewel'' -- a $50 million football stadium and the beginning of a burgeoning sports and entertainment complex. ''This facility will be the crown jewel for the entire FIU community,'' FIU athletic director Pete Garcia said. ``It also will be a centerpiece for all of South Florida to enjoy FIU football games, high school football, pro soccer, concerts and other events at this state-of-the-art venue.'' The stadium -- which will be built in phases and mirrors the wraparound model of Florida State's Doak Campbell Stadium -- opens Sept. 20, with FIU's first home game of the 2008 season against South Florida. It is the only on-campus stadium south of Orlando. In the opening phase, the stadium will seat 20,000, and it eventually will expand to 45,000 with an enclosed upper deck.
The stadium has a seating capacity of 32,000 with the possibility for future expansion to 45,000. The 32,000-seat configuration includes nearly 600 preferred club level seats and 240 seats in 24 spacious luxury suites housed in a custom, three-level press box. In addition to housing preferred club and suite seating, the air-conditioned press box provides excellent sightlines and comfortably accommodates more than 125 working print, radio and television media. The playing surface is 25 feet below ground level, with half of the stadium's seats sunk below grade, ensuring a smooth transition into the surrounding neighborhood and the remainder of the SMU campus.
What caused the mighty Gopher football program to fall into mediocrity? Geography, weather, and racial patterns made significant contributions.
With the advent of air conditioning the Sun Belt became a more hospitable place to live. That led to population growth in the Southern climes.
In the late 60's, and early 70's black players who once had to attend traditional black colleges in the South, head North, or go West were welcomed into the SWC, SEC, and ACC. This all helped contribute to the decline of a program located in the less desireable frozen North.
All programs have their down times, even the Oklahoma's, and USC's, but the the final stake in the heart of Minnesota program was abandoning Memorial Stadium also known as the "Brick House" which was the home of Gophers football from 1924 until 1981. The stadium seated approximately 66,000 people with additional temporary bleachers, but comfortably fit around 56,000.
Pressured by downtown Minneapolis business interests and athletic boosters, the school elected to move out of the stadium to the Metrodome about two miles away during the spring of 1982. Athletic director at the time Paul Giel cited the advantages of recruiting by playing in a new NFL venue. Also, the attendance was expected to go up with protection from harsh late fall weather.
Minnesota leaders felt that the Metrodome would not be succesful unless it attracted every major sports team in the area. That runs contrary to the way things are today where multipurpose facilities have fallen out of favor.
The move to the Metrodome proved to be disappointing in the long run, as the home games lost the charm of being on a college campus. The Gophers had the lowest priority in scheduling behind the Twins and Vikings, and had to move games if the Twins were in baseball playoffs. The University also gave up most concession and parking revenue, although their portion of the rent was the lowest of the three Metrodome tenants. If you have ever been to a game at the Metrodome you realize that it was a poor man's Kingdome. While I have never been a fan of the Kingdome, it was a palace in comparison the the Metrodome.
Around the start of this decade Minnesota boosters started floating the idea of moving the program back on campus. In 2009 the Gophers will move into a new facility called TCF Bank Stadium. The 50,000 seat on-campus "horseshoe" style stadium is under construction and planned to be finished in time for the 2009 football season. The stadium will be designed to support future expansion to seat up to 80,000 people. The $288 million dollar project is being financed by corporate, alumni, boosters, and the state of Minnesota which ponied up about half of the cost.
Conceptional animated video of what TCF Stadium will look like when completed in 2009.
Minnesota is also building a new Stadium for the Twins, and the Vikings. Money will come from owners of the franchises, and the state of Minnesota. I think it is important to point out that the state didn't forget the one program they had a vested interest in, and that was the University of Minnesota. The stadium will lead to an immediate rennaisance in Gopher football, and it will also bring Big Ten titles to Minnesota once again. For Minnesota the lack of an on campus stadium was the missing piece of the puzzle.
Washington has a similar choice to make in the not too distant future. Many will urge that since we have one of the best pro football stadiums in the country downtown that it makes sense to save the money it would take to rebuild Husky Stadium and move the program to Qwest.
One only has to look at what happened in Minnesota, and what is about to happen in Miami to realize the folly in such a move.
College football doesn't work well off campus.
We don't want to learn that lesson the hard way.
Monday, February 18, 2008
I hate to use Spencer Hawes as an example, but why not. Spencer played one uninspired year at UW and ended up being the 10th pick in the NBA draft. Spence has played in 43 games so far and is averaging eight minutes, three points, and two rebounds per game. Doesn't exactly sound like fun does it? Spence of course is a millionaire which is a pretty neat thing when you are 19, but because he left so early I really doubt he has an NBA career that will match Brockman's. I just don't think kids develop well sitting at the end of the bench. Spencer is a kid that really could have used another year or two to develop his game.
To me Brockman is the type of guy that every NBA team needs. He is the type of team player that goes out there and does all the dirty work.
I used to be a huge fan of the Sonics and the NBA, but I really haven't paid much attention since Michael Jordan left, and maybe I lost interest even before that. The problem with the NBA is the lack of development in its player pool because of all the kids jumping early. What it does is create a one on one league which is pretty boring if you ask me. That is one reason why I don't have my panties all up in a bunch about the Sonics leaving town for Oklahoma City.
NBA Commisioner Stern dropped a bomb this weekend that the new ownership group offered the Seattle city council 30 million to pay off the bonds, plus projected rent for the remaining years on the lease to leave early for Oklahoma City. This latest salvo makes me chuckle as the NBA tries in earnest to move a franchise that has been stable for the past 41 years to a city that has a miniscule media market in comparison. If you can't make it in Seattle you are not going to make it long term in Oklahoma City.
The city of Seattle's plan is to punitively drain the Bennett ownership group with enough monetary losses over the next two years to force them to sell to local ownership. There just happens to be local ownership willing to take over the franchise by the way which is puzzling to me. Bennett is correct about one thing, the team can't survive without a new, or drastically refurbished arena. Whoever ends up with the team if they stay in Seattle is still going to need to finance a new arena.
How many of you out there have been paying attention to the UW womens basketball team this year? How many of you can feel the sizzle, and the buzz as Todd Turner put it? Tia Jackson is rebuilding with a very talented freshmen class, but the results haven't been that great as the Huskies are currently 6-8 in conference, and 11-15 overall. As you may remember coach Daugherty was fired last season after taking her team to the NCAA tournament because Turner said the program lacked buzz. This year they lack wins, and buzz.
Not a single UW players was invited to this years combine which ins't surprising when you look at the overall level of the program. Still you would think Rankin would have gotten a sniff. I see Louis making it in the NFL as a return guy. Historically the Huskies used to have 6-10 players each year good enough to get evaluated.
Condotta fires back at Matt Hayes
But Matt Hayes of The Sporting News left me with little choice with this column penned earlier this week in which he tries to make the case that The Seattle Times has a vendetta against Rick Neuheisel.
I respect Condotta, and I think he does an excellent job covering the Huskies. I don't think Bob has anything against Husky football. I do think his employer has a vendetta against Husky football which goes back all the way to the last days of Don James.
As for Neuheisel he made his own bed while he was here by simply not telling the truth very much. Rick was all caught up in the Clintonesque view at the time that it was ok to lie as long as you were able to mix in a shred of truth with it while accomplishing your goal.
Now that Clintonesque is out of vogue you wonder exactly how Neuheisel is going to play it over time at UCLA? So far, so good which is a huge improvement over his first two months at Washington.
Behind the Purple Curtain
There isn't much coming out of Montlake right now. The next major happening will be the hire of a new RB coach. Word on the street was Willingham had made his decision, but no announcement, and not a single candidate has been identified so far which leads me to believe that whoever he originally settled on isn't coming.
No word yet on when Spring practice is going to start since the Athletic Department is trying to coordinate a few events to coincide with the annual Spring game.
As far as the stadium goes lobbying efforts are continuing in Olympia as Washington is taking the one on one approach with each individual legislator. It is a long and tedious process, but it is the only way to get the job done. Our poll this week asks if it will get done this session. the odds aren't good since the session is so short, and Dr Evil (Frank Chopp) doesn't seem to think it is much of a priority.
A new plan surfaced this past week concerning 520 which would put either a tunnel, or a drawbridge and off ramp through the South parking lot. I like the idea of a tunnel, but it is an engineering nightmare because of the tight space it would have to fit in to, not to mention the cost which is probably prohibitive.
I think an article like this underlines the importance of refurbishing Husky Stadium now rather than even a couple of years later. I still think there is a very good possibility that the program moves to Qwest on a permanent basis in the near future if funding is not resolved ASAP.
Sunday Morning Quarterback
Nationally, aside from its obviously dominant teams from 1990-92, Washington probably doesn't get its due as a consistent power over the last quarter century. Under three different head coaches from 1975-2002, in fact, the Huskies were the best program in the Pac Ten by a decent margin, won eight conference championships and had 26 straight winning seasons. The post-Neuheislian malaise, though, has been a cruel, bitter pill:
I have been going off topic today for a reason, and that reason is there simply isn't much Husky football news right now.
So lets talk about the Mariners for a second. They just finished trading a huge part of their future to obtain Eric Bedard, and they have also filled all the holes in their rotation going into the season. Offensively this team is still missing some pieces that will prevent it from going to the playoffs unless the rest of the AL West falls apart.
I am excited about the starting roatation, and I think the bullpen will be able to pick up the slack following the departure of one of my favorites George Sherrill. The question I have is how are they going to score runs?
At first base you have the overpaid Richie Sexson who has been on the decline ever since he arrived in Seattle. The Mariners have no choice but to hope that richie bounces back offensively this season because they can't unload his contract.
At second base you have Lopez who has not lived up to his potential since being called up to the majors. Lopez for some reason can't get in to optimum shpae, and he tends to fade after the weather gets warm
I like Bettancourt at short even though he will never put power numbers.
At third base you have the best defensive player on the team in Adrian Beltre who has put up decent enough numbers on offense even though he never has matched the numbers he put up during his final year in LA.
Johjima behind the plate is a guy I really like. He hits well, and his defense, and pitch calling has improved dramatically over the last two years.
Vidro is a one dimensional DH who had a carreer year last year depsite lacking power. You can't win with a singles hitting DH.
The outfield is a defensive liabilty with Ibanez, and Wilkerson in the corners. Ichiro holds down center and tries to make up for the offensive, and defensive liabilites of his cornermen.
The M's aren't going to be able to get the veteran help they need on offense which means the only hope for improvement rides on the rookie shoulders of Clement, and Balantien. Both of those guys are realistically a year away from providing significant help.
For the M's to make the playoffs this year they need more offense, and I just don't think they are going to be able to come up with it in 2008.
Sunday, February 17, 2008
Beaver coach Kevin Mouton had little to say about the off court behavior of his team, but commented that he found it hard to believe that his players called the team hotel to challenge UW to a rumble in the parking lot. Kevin....believe it, Coach Romar saved the phone message.
The Huskies have five games remaining with the Arizona schools popping in this week to wrap up the husky home schedule. The week after the Dawgs (14-12, 5-8 Pac-10) hit the road to the Bay Area then head over to Pullman to wrap up the regular season.
Saturday, February 16, 2008
The 2008 class reminds me of the great classes of the late 80's, and early 90's. I had to vote for them even though they haven't played a down.
2001 ( R.Williams, Frederick, Paus ) 5% (3 votes)
2008 ( Middleton, Ta'amu, C.Polk ) 18% (11 votes)
1997 ( M.Tuiasosopo, Conniff, Triplett ) 37% (22 votes)
1992 ( Milloy, Sapp, Aleaga ) 35% (21 votes)
1995 ( B. Huard, Kruetz, Towns ) 5% (3 votes)
Other: 0% (0 votes)
Excluding 2008 I would go with the 1997 class. As you notice there weren't too many misses. The 1995 class even though it was small didn't have many misses either.
1992 Class (James)
Jason Shelley, WR, 6-2, 170, Vallejo, Calif.;
Theron Hill, WR, 5-9, 170, Carson, Calif.;
Lawyer Milloy, DB, 6-2, 185, Tacoma (Lincoln);
Joe Wells, OL, 6-4, 270, Arroyo Grande, Calif.;
Curtis Bogan, LB, 6-5, 215, Renton;
Toby Brookins, RB, 5-11, 180, Sylmar, Calif.;
Ted Stark, QB, 6-4, 190, Medford, Ore.;
Lynn Johnson, OL, 6-3, 285, Des Moines (Mount Rainier);
Bob Sapp, DL, 6-4, 250, Colorado Springs;
David Richie, DL, 6-5, 220, Kelso;
Hernan Santiago, LB, 6-2, 240, Arvin, Calif.;
Ink Aleaga, LB, 6-2, 215, Honolulu;
Brad Brosaitis, OL, 6-6, 270, Martinez, Calif.;
Dave Janoski, WR/RB, 5-10, 180, Corona, Calif.
1997 Recruiting Class (Lambright)
(Not a lot of misses in this class)
Vince Anderson, LB, 6-2, 210, San Diego;
Kyle Benn, OL, 6-3, 290, O'Dea (Seattle);
Sam Blanche, SS, 6-1, 200, Rialto, Calif.;
Frank Candela, RB, 5-8, 180, Peabody, Mass;
Joe Collier, OT, 6-7, 260, Mead (Spokane);
Pat Conniff, FB, 6-2, 210, Woodinville;
Derrell Daniels, LB, 6-2, 210, Sylmar, Calif;
Wondame Davis, CB, 5-11, 165, Denver;
Nick Feigner, TE, 6-4, 240, Walla Walla;
Art Gipson, TB, 6-0, 215, Fontana, Calif.;
Lenny Haynes, CB, 5-11, 185, San Diego;
Ja'Warren Hooker, WR, 5-10, 165, Ellensburg
Jabari Johnson, TB, 6-2, 200, Mesa, Ariz.;
Ryan Julian, DE, 6-6, 255, Idaho Falls, Idaho;
Omare Lowe, CB, 6-2, 185, Tahoma (Maple Valley);
Toalei Mulitauopele, DT, 6-7, 315, Walla Walla CC;
Rock Nelson, OG, 6-5, 260, Shorecrest (Shoreline);
Sean O'Laughlin, P, 6-0, 190, Federal Way;
Patrick Reddick, WR, 5-9, 185, Newbury Park, Calif.;
J.K. Scott, QB, 6-3, 195, Burbank, Calif.
Adam Tate, TB, 6-2, 215, Los Angeles;
Terry Tharps, WR, 5-10, 175, Curtis (Tacoma);
Larry Triplett, DT, 6-2, 280, Los Angeles;
Marques Tuiasosopo,QB/FS, 6-2, 210, Woodinville;
Anthony Vonture, FS, 6-2, 180, Concord, Calif.;
John Westra, TE, 6-4, 235, Mesa, Ariz.;
Jamaun Willis, LB, 6-2, 230, Carson, Calif.
2001 Recruiting Class (Neuheisel)
Tui Alailefaleula DL 6-4 270 Anchorage, AK (Bartlett)
Evan Benjamin S 6-0 200 Redmond, WA (Redmond)
Will Conwell LB 6-4 220 Kent, WA (Kentwood)
Ty Eriks RB 6-2 220 Seattle, WA (O'Dea)
Charles Frederick WR 6-0 190 Boca Raton, FL (Pope John Paul II)
Andy Heater TE 6-4 245 Snohomish, WA (Snohomish)
Manase Hopoi DE 6-4 240 Sacramento, CA (Valley)
William Kava OL 6-3 275 Kaneohe, HI (Iolani)
Joseph Lobendahn LB 6-0 220 Honolulu, HI (Saint Louis)
Dan McCourtie FB 6-2 230 Othello, WA (Othello)
Derek McLaughlin P 6-2 190 Mesa, AZ (Mountain View)
Robin Meadow OL 6-5 305 Concord, CA (De La Salle)
Casey Paus QB 6-4 210 New Lenox, IL (Lincoln Way)
Tusi Sa'au DL 6-2 300 Seattle, WA (Rainier Beach)
Mike Savicky OL 6-4 270 Corona, CA (Corona)
Eric Shyne CB 5-11 180 Pomona, CA (Pomona)
James Sims, Jr. S 6-1 185 Las Vegas, NV (Valley)
Chris Singleton RB 6-0 190 Etiwanda, CA (Etiwanda)
Kim Taylor CB 6-0 190 Long Beach, CA (Long Beach Poly)
Francisco Tipoti OL 6-5 295 Honolulu, HI (McKinley/CCSF)
Joe Toledo TE 6-5 287 Encinitas, CA (La Costa Canyon)
Brad Vanneman OL 6-3 277 Issaquah, WA (Issaquah)
Reggie Williams WR 6-4 215 Tacoma, WA (Lakes)
This weeks question:
Will the Washington State Legislature Approve Funding for Husky Stadium this Session?
One of the more interesting things I heard this week was that the Oregon State basketball team interrupted UW's practice on Friday at Gill Coliseum with plenty of verbal trash talking, and physical threats. The altercation almost evolved into a brawl.
Ralph Miller must be rolling over in his grave. Given the Beavers performance since his retirement, Ralph passed away in 2001, the poor man has probably been on spin cycle ever since! Miller had only two losing seasons in 19 years at OSU. He retired as the second all-time winningest coach in Oregon State history with 359 victories. When he retired at age 70 in 1989, his record was 657-382. The Beavers have been a doormat ever since Ralph left.
Now back to the present. You have to wonder where there interim coach Kevin Mouton was during all this? We have all seen teams get pretty spirited during games, but invading the visitors practice period, and trying to start a rumble? It is pretty evident that Mouton has lost control of the team and isn't the right fit as a potential head coach anywhere.
Mouton of course was the scumbag who gave CJ Giles his walking papers in an extremely vindictive move following the firing of the head coach Jay John after the last UW game. The performance of the Beavers since John left should be enough to bury Mouton's career.
As far as todays game goes it should be an entertaining slug fest as two teams that don't like each other play to avoid the Pac Ten basement. I should give the edge to UW since they have more talent, and are probably fired up pretty good after the moronic episode. Neither of these teams has anything left to play for, so a grudgematch is as good as any reason for UW to repsond in a positive way.
Advantage Oregon State?
On the other hand the ref's are going to call this one close, and since it is on the road that means Brockman will be lucky to get 25 minutes. The Huskies of course are a different team without Brockman which means they suck even more when he is out of the game. In will come Artem Wallace who will be fouled anytime he gets the ball. Artem just happens to be the worst foul shooter in the league despite possesing an improving game as an inforcer. Since they will call it close it means there will plenty of foul shots, and we all know the Huskies can't shoot foul shots.