Archive for Washington State Cougars

Apple Cup 2010!

Well, this video says it all:

Welcome to the Chris Polk show!

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Remember The Apple Cup!

Apple-Cup-logo The tant “oh and twelve” will continue to be uttered by Coug fans for years to come. If you feel the need to respond, don’t be afraid to shout back “oh and thirty”, the score of this year’s Apple Cup. And while you’re doing that, here are some other phrases you can use to puzzle WSU fans:

  • “461 – 163” – The total number of yards the Huskies rolled up vs the Cougs offensive output.
  • “6.6 – 1.7” – Washington’s yards per carry vs. Washington State’s.
  • “1964” – The year of the last Apple Cup shutout.
  • “3” – The number of QBs WSU had to rotate throughout the game due to the relentless attack of Washington’s defense.
  • 0” – The number of times WSU has won three Apple Cups in a row.
  • “65-31” – The current Apple Cup record (UW has 65 wins, WSU 31).
  • “3-22” – The Cougars record the last two years.

And finally:

  • “1916” – The last time WSU won the Rose Bowl.

Can’t wait ‘till next year!

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No Love For Heisman Man?

heisman-trophy I haven’t heard anyone mention this guy outside the game. Near the end of Washington’s Apple Cup rout of WSU, a man dressed as the Heisman trophy ran to the middle of the field and struck the Heisman pose. Turning around, the back of his shirt read “Locker for Heisman”.

Maybe next year?

 

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Locker-Heisman

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What’s The Probability Of A UW Win?

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For WSU fans it’s been called “the only game that matters”. For UW fans it’s been the game where they remind their cross state rivals who their big brother is. We’re talking of course about the Apple Cup. While most of the nation won’t take notice of this northwest rivalry, Pat Forde at ESPN has ranked the annual meeting at number 8 in his listing of rivalries for 2009.

What’s at stake this year? For Washington it’s about respect from their instate rival who has won four of the past five – including an embarrassing loss to the Cougars in Pullman to seal their first 0-12 season. Further, first year coach Steve Sarkisian does not want to be the first Pac-10 team to lose to WSU this year. A win would give Washington their fourth win of the season – a feat that shouldn’t be overlooked for a team unable to muster a win last year.

For Washington State a loss at Husky Stadium will make them winless against NCAA division 1 football teams this year and finish at the bottom of the Pac-10. A win will give them their first 3-game winning streak in history.

So who’s going to win this year?

Historically, Washington has won 2/3 of the meetings, see figure 1. So we could say the huskies have a roughly 67% of winning while the Cougars chances are one in three. But it’s not that simple. Let’s take a closer look:

WSU has won two in a row eight times over the course of the century old rivalry. Two of those streaks have come this decade. So we can probably extrapolate and assume the cougars are unable to win three in a row. On the other hand, Washington has sported two 8-game winning streaks and a recent 6-game winning streak. You can easily identify these in figure 1. Coach Owens provided the first long winning streak to push Washington’s winning percentage over 60%. The combined score of this winning streak was 151-61. Don James was also able to win eight in a row leading to an overall winning percentage of 65%. Don’s Huskies outscored the Cougars 246-139 during these eight years. Rick Neuheisel won all four of his Apple Cups during a UW 6-game winning streak where the combined score was 173-85. Interestingly, all three of these coaches winning streaks team at the beginning of their tenure. Beginning coaches seem to have good luck against WSU – Could this be the start of Sarkisian’s winning streak?

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Figure 1

But we can’t write off the Cougars that easily. In the past two years (since November 10, 2007 to be exact) Washington State has only won two games against Div 1 opponents. Both of those wins have come in the last two Apple Cups! In the past five years WSU has managed to win four apple cups. It appears as though the Cougars have the Huskies number. Perhaps they’ll win after all?

So what’s the probability of the Cougars pulling the upset this Saturday? The all time series stands at 64-31-6 in favor of Washington. Statistically, this gives Washington a 63% of winning and the Cougars a 31% chance (67% – 33% if we ignore the tie games). But we’re not taking into account the home field advantage. If we disregard ties, the home team wins 55% of the time. WSU has only won 14 Apple Cups in Seattle while Washington has won 37. This means Washington has won 73% of the Apple Cups played in Seattle. This statistic combined with WSU playing some of the worst Pac-10 football in decades may make this game a lock for the UW.

So what does all this math mean? Absolutely nothing. In the Apple Cup, anything can happen!

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College Football’s Top Rivalries For 2009

AppleCup The top 10 college rivalries are listed by Pat Forde over at ESPN. Sure Taxes-Oklahoma is first and Tennessee-Florida is second but the Apple Cup comes in at number 8. His ranking is mainly due to the stadium funding hoopla earlier this year. There’s a lot of bad blood between fans and even the athletic departments. This year’s apple cup will be one of the better in recent history. What makes it such a big game?

  • Both teams have been Pac-10 bottom dwellers for some time. They are looking for any win they can get. 
  • Washington has a new head coach, Steve Sarkisian, and he’s looking to be 1-0 against the Cougars.
  • The Cougars have won the past two games. If they win this year in Husky Stadium it will be their first three in a row in the rivalries history.
  • The Cougars have won four out of the past five games.

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Rivals.com has ranked Washington at number 97

174249 Rivals has the Huskies ranked at an unsurprising 97 while Washington State is ranked at a paltry 104. They have some nice 2009 previews about both teams too. Full rankings can be found here.

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Ranking This State’s College Football Programs

SadFace Buster Sports is ranking the sports is ranking division 1-A football. As expected, and both of Washington’s teams are in the lower rungs. The WSU cougars, come in at number 105 while the UW Huskies come in at number 89. No one in Husky Nation has seen rankings so low – pardon us while we shed a collective tear… 

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