The University of Washington produced a rash of intriguing numbers during its 34-14 victory over the University of Utah in Salt Lake City Saturday.
Washington’s 17-point win (31-14) at Utah represents the Huskies’ largest margin of victory on the road since an 18-point triumph at Stanford on Nov. 3, 2007 (the Huskies have won five of their past eight games away from Seattle, including December’s Holiday Bowl). UW’s all-time largest margin of victory on the road: 54 points in a Warren Moon-led 54-0 romp at Oregon on Oct. 8, 1977 that fueled the Huskies’ Rose Bowl run that year.
Tracking Cody Pickett
Sophomore quarterback Keith Price threw three more touchdown passes Saturday — 8 yards to Kasen Williams, 23 yards to Jermaine Kearse, 17 yards to Devin Aguilar — and now has 17 in his first five games as the UW starter. Price needs 11 more TD passes in UW’s remaining seven games to match Cody Pickett’s school record of 28, set in 2002. After five games that year, Pickett had thrown 10 touchdown passes.
Tracking Brock Huard
Price completed 22 of 30 throws for 226 yards, 3 TDs and one interception against the Utes, and his passing efficiency rating actually dropped a few points (due to the INT). Price entered the game with a 176.7 rating and ended it at 173.7. Price, though, remains comfortably ahead Brock Huard’s school record of 153.8, set in 1997.
Only three quarterbacks in UW football history have averaged more than two touchdown passes per game in a single season. Huard threw 25 in Washington’s 11 games in 1997, 2.77 per. Pickett averaged 2.15 TD passes per in 2002, tossing 28 in 13 contests. Billy Joe Hobert averaged 2.00 TDs per in 1991, throwing 24 in 12 contests. With 17 TDs in Washington’s first five, Price is averaging 3.40 TDs per game. He has already thrown as many TDs this year as Jake Locker threw in all of 2010.
Among UW quarterbacks who never threw 17 TD passes in a season (much less five games): Don Heinrich (career-high 14 in 1950), Sonny Sixkiller (15, 1970), Warren Moon (12, 1977), Tom Flick (15, 1980), Steve Pelluer (11, 1983), Hugh Millen (6, 1984-85), Mark Brunell (16, 1990), Damon Huard (13, 1994-95) and Marques Tuiasosopo (15, 2000).
Polk Surpasses Steele
With 189 rushing yards at Utah (second-highest single-game total of his career), junior Chris Polk became the third Husky to surpass 3,000 for a career. Polk, who now has 3,172, and trails only Napoleon Kaufman (1991-94), who had 4,106, on Washington’s career list. Polk, who surpassed Joe Steele (3,168), is 934 behind and would need to average 133.4 per game over Washington’s next seven contests to catch Kaufman. Polk’s 15th career 100-yard rushing game ties him with Greg Lewis for second on the all-time list (Kaufman had 17).
150-Yard Rushing Games
With 189, Polk rushed for 150 or more yards in a game for the third time in his UW career. He had 284 in last year’s Apple Cup against Washington State and a 177-yard effort against Nebraska in the Holiday Bowl. Kaufman holds the school record for most 150-yard rushing games with eight, topped by a 254-yard performance against San Jose State in 1994. Rashaan Shehee (1994-97) had six 150-yard rushing games, including a 212-yard show against Washington State in the 1995 Apple Cup.Steele (1976-79) and Lewis (1987-90) produced five 150-yard rushing games.
17 Rushing Yards
Washington held Utah to just 17 rushing yards (Utah’s longest run: 6 yards), the first time the Huskies had allowed an opponent to rush for fewer than 20 since Aug. 31, 2007, at Syracuse, when the Huskies alllowed eight to the Orangemen. School record: UW held Pacific to a minus 50 rushing yards on Sept. 12, 1981.
When Jamaal Kearse recovered a Utah fumble (caused by Garret Gilliland) and returned it 18 yards for a touchdown, it marked Washington’s first fumble-return touchdown since Oct. 3, 2009, when then-freshman Desmond Trufant returned a Notre Dame fumble 17 yards for a touchdown at South Bend.
(The last time UW recovered a fumble for a TD: Sept. 20, 2003, by Terry “Tank” Johnson in a 45-14 win over Idaho. Johnson recovered the fumble in the end zone four minutes after the opening kickoff)
The last time the Huskies allowed a fumble to be returned for a touchdown: Nov. 27, 2010, by Cameron Jordan of California.
4-1 After Five Games
Washington has started 4-1 for the first time since 2006. Its five 2011 opponents — Eastern Washington (1-4), Hawaii (3-2), Nebraska (4-1), California (3-1) and Utah (2-2) — have a combined record of 13-10.
The Huskies do not play again until Oct. 15 when they host Colorado. Since 2000, the Huskies are 2-6 following a bye week (in three years since 2000, there were no byes).