UW has an elite stadium, must also raise its football team


One question you’re asking yourself this week is, what’s the point of having one of the most revered college football stadiums in the country if your team isn’t playing with the best?

With the Pac-12 conference suddenly watered down by defections from USC and UCLA to the Big Ten, the University of Washington football program also finds itself at a competitive crossroads.

We just checked and Husky Stadium still stands next to Lake Washington, glistening in the sun, begging marquee opponents and national TV coverage to show up on a more regular basis.

Why wouldn’t the Huskies want to compete on a competitive level with a super conference or super conferences?

College football is going through another drastic overhaul, or can’t you remember when Texas A&M and Missouri weren’t in the SEC and Nebraska and Penn State weren’t in the Big Ten?

Through it all, Husky Stadium has maintained a regal presence, even undergoing a $261 million renovation a decade ago on Lake Washington.

Just this week, someone at NFL.com offered their list of the 15 best college football venues in the country, using historical history, loud fans or great views as a barometer.

The Rose Bowl was the first.

No arguments at all.

Husky Stadium finished third.

Again, no pushback whatsoever.

The 101-year-old Montlake facility had a fine regional run for the most part. Now is the time to share it regularly with the rest of the country, with regular primetime TV coverage and all of America learning about this place.

It’s the only way college football can tie and host national champions from places other than Alabama, Georgia, and Clemson.

College basketball went through a competitive malaise when UCLA beat everyone over and over again, and it all got wildly repetitive. A bigger tournament and March Madness livened things up and produced a host of different champions.

The SEC doesn’t need to win everything every year on the football field. It’s time for the January madness to take over. Let a team with a much smaller ZERO budget upset a spend of millions. What an outsider uproar that would cause.

The Husky stadium is top notch. It’s time to bring the rest of the football program to that level. The establishment deserves nothing less.

What follows is NFL.com’s list of the top 15 stadiums, with our personal comments injected. The original story can be viewed here.


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1. Rose Bowl (UCLA) – The greatest executive in college football on New Year’s Day. Goose bumps guaranteed. San Gabriel Mountains. Grandfather of all.

2. Tiger Stadium (LSU) “This place is intimidating, even when it’s completely empty.

3. Husky Stadium (UW) — Personal note: This is where I literally grew up; my grandfather ran the game day operations of the McElhenny during the Sixkiller days. I know every glorious inch of the place.

4. Autzen Stadium (Oregon) — The most beautiful small stadium in the country.

5. Ohio Stadium (Ohio State) – UW’s Donnie Moore snuffed out the dreaded Horseshoe in 1966 with 221 yards and 2 touchdowns in a 38-22 win.

6. Kyle Field (Texas A&M) – Seattle stole the 12th man concept at this crazy stadium north of Houston.

7. Notre Dame Stadium — This is the tradition of college football that you cannot change or destroy. Everything is cool there.

8. Memorial Stadium (Clemson) — They touch the rock before playing here, then crush their opponents with rocks.

9. Sanford Stadium (Georgia) – It’s halfway between Atlanta and Augusta in Athens, so it’s all A’s.

10. Michigan Stadium “You pass by on the way from Detroit to Chicago. Of course you have to stop and take a look. On Saturdays, it turns into a big metropolis.

11. Michie Stadium (Army) – Another untouchable college football venue that cannot be defiled, remembering great teams and several former Heisman winners.

12. Memorial Stadium (Nebraska) – The biggest fans in the world. The 1991 UW-Nebraska game, a 36-21 Husky victory, led to a national championship. Becomes third-largest city in Nebraska on game day.

13. Albertson Stadium (Boise State) “The house Chris Petersen built supporting that stained carpet.

14. Beaver Stadium (Penn State) “People have to drive forever to find this place, but it’s worth it.

15. Camp Randall (Wisconsin) – Harvey Blanks, recently deceased from UW, made his way with kick returns of 83 and 66 yards in this frame near the lake in a 21-17 Husky victory in 1968.

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