Exactly a week ago, I was on here lamenting the loss to Stanford, but there was still an opportunity to achieve everything we wanted from this season: beat Oregon, win the Pac-12 North, play USC for the conference title, and earn a berth in one of the major New Years bowl games (probably the Fiesta).
Then, like, pretty much that same day, everything went to complete and utter shit. The Husky football team – seemingly out of nowhere – suffered a rash of COVID-related diagnoses which – combined with the required contact tracing of people who could be possibly infected by those who were already infected – meant that our game against the Ducks had to be canceled. The downside, obviously, was missing an opportunity to prove we’re better than them.
The upside, it turned out, meant that with our 3-1 record (against Oregon’s 3-2 record), we officially WON the Pac-12 North. There’s obviously a huge asterisk, since we didn’t play the Ducks; but, you know, they had every opportunity to NOT lose two games and failed in that charge, so fuck them.
That briefly set the stage for this Friday, where Washington would travel to USC to play in the Pac-12 Championship Game (with the Oregon vs. Colorado game also scheduled to be played in Southern California – on Saturday – so they could be in the area if a replacement team was needed). Officially, the Huskies had until sometime Thursday to see if we could cobble together a team to take the field. But, an announcement was scheduled for the early afternoon yesterday, which I took to be the terrible sign that it was.
Apparently, the Huskies don’t have the 53 healthy players required by the conference to play. They don’t even have ONE viable offensive lineman! So, that’s that. The Washington Huskies’ regular season ends with a 3-1 record, and the Oregon Ducks take our place. I guess it was nice of us to give them the extra few days to prepare, though I’m sure that came with pressure from the conference to make the call a few days early.
This is just a collosal disappointment. If we can get our shit together over the next few weeks, there’s a chance we can play in a bowl game, but that’s a poor consolation prize. In a way, though, it’s perfectly fitting; nothing about this year turned out the way we expected, so why should this be any different? It kind of feels like a miracle that we got the games we got. But, it’s still frustrating to get so close to playing for a conference title, only to have the opportunity ripped away by forces outside of your control. I know it leaves me with a really empty feeling. Yet another thing I was looking forward to, turned to rubble.
This year’s starting to get to me, you guys.