Maybe 12 hours isn’t enough when it comes to sleeping off a frustrating loss.
Make no mistake, I’m still very displeased with the progress (or lack thereof) of Keith Price. In his Junior season, and second full year as a starter, we had every reason to expect the sky and the moon and the stars with this guy. Coming off of what he was able to do as a first-year starter in 2011, not only should this offense be humming like a Swiss watch, but we were even thinking of maybe throwing around the Heisman word in conversations.
But, let’s take a step back for a minute. Yeah, the offense has been a HUGE disappointment. This was a team that scored over 30 points with ease last year. Now, we’re struggling to average over 20 (and if you take out that Portland State game, we’re only averaging 15.2 points per game).
That having been said, though, look at the strides this defense has made! Granted, in the LSU game they essentially stopped trying on offense after halftime. And the same goes for the USC game. But, when you take into account this defense last year couldn’t even stop opposing offenses when they weren’t trying, at least we’re not overly embarrassing ourselves. In 2012, the defense has far and away outplayed the offense, hands down.
Now, with that out of the way, take a look at our record. We’re 3-3 overall, 1-2 in conference. Not too good, until you take a moment to look back at what we predicted going into the season. I think most of us figured the Huskies would be 2-4 overall and 0-3 in conference after six games. Remember, these are the toughest six games of anyone in the Pac-12 and maybe anyone in the nation. The fact that we’re essentially three more wins away from a bowl game (with Colorado, Utah, Cal, and Wazzu still to go) is a nice little silver lining on a season at its midway point.
We knew LSU and Oregon would be impossible. We figured USC would find a way to win and we figured Stanford would run all over us. The season has gone ALMOST according to plan. But, instead of losing a game we should’ve won, we won a game that we probably should’ve lost. That sets us up splendidly for the second half of the schedule.
Arizona isn’t the world-beater we thought they were after their 3-0 start. That’s a game we can win this weekend. Oregon State looks amazing, but they still have to come up here to play us. I think that’s the game they suffer their first defeat. Cal doesn’t impress me a whole lot, though going down there and stealing one from them will be difficult since they’ll probably be super fired up to kick our asses after taking their coaches and recruits. That just leaves a home game against Utah (easily winnable) and two road games against the two worst teams in the conference (Colorado & WSU).
I’m not saying it’s a lock, but 9-3 is still very much on the table. The hardest part of our schedule is over. As the weather gets worse, the outlook on this season gets a lot sunnier. Losing to USC isn’t the end of the world. It might, in fact, be the beginning of something special.