BY Steve Rudman 07:51AM 01/03/2011


For Seattle, a remarkable end to an unremarkable year

Jack Locker ended his UW football career by leading the Huskies to a stunning win over Nebraska in the Holiday Bowl / (Drew McKenzie/Sportspress Northwest)

Dec. 27-Jan. 2
In an unprecedented move, TWTWTW (TW3) is not acknowledging that anyone remotely connected with Seattle or Washington state sports endured a bad week. The UW football team won the Holiday Bowl in jaw-to-the-floor fashion, the UW basketball team swept the L.A. schools in L.A., and the Seahawks won the NFC West title, even if they did get into the playoffs via the servants’ entrance. If anything bad happened, we don’t care.

  • Good Week — The only thing the University of Washington didn’t do last week was win the Royal Henley Regatta on the River Thames. The UW football team astoundingly scored its first postseason win since 2001 and the UW basketball team swept USC and UCLA in Los Angeles for the first time since Brandon Roy graced the lineup (2006), and for just the third time ever.
  • Good Week — Charlie Whitehurst had ample opportunity to screw up his second NFL start, but instead played solidly enough — demonstrated a strong arm and enough mobility to run for 28 yards — to get the Seahawks into the playoffs. So who starts next week? In the meantime, while we watched Whitehurst, we kept seeing rookie Bob Wolcott pitch Game 1 of the 1995 ALCS against Cleveland.
  • Sunday, Jan. 2 — The Seahawks suddenly unveil something they haven’t had since Shaun Alexander — a running game — and use it and a heretofore non-existent defense to upend the favored St. Louis Rams 16-6 and earn a spot in the NFL playoffs. It might have been a pillow fight between two teams with losing records, but it was at least our pillow fight.
  • Saturday, Jan. 1 — The first ski resort-type gondola opens at Crystal Mountain. The new gondola allows skiers to ascend 2,456 vertical feet in under 10 minutes, half the time Crystal’s old two-chairlift used to take. Cost to build this joyride: $5.5 million.
  • Friday, Dec. 31 — Behind Matthew Bryan-Amaning, who pulled a Judge Crater during his last visit to Westwood, the UW basketball team races past the UCLA Bruins at Pauley Pavilion, recording just its fourth win all time in that facility. Dating to the 2009-10 season, UW has now won five consecutive Pac-10 road games, a remarkable achievement.
  • Thursday, Dec. 30 — Huskies shock the oddsmakers, to say nothing of Nebraska, by delivering an amazing beat-down on the Cornhuskers in the Holiday Bowl in San Diego. The Jake Locker era couldn’t have ended any better, and the Chris Polk era has suddenly become historically significant.
  • Wednesday, Dec. 29 — UW basketball team guts out a 73-67 overtime win against USC in Los Angeles, in large part due to true freshman Terrence Ross’s career-high 18 points and a matching total from Matthew Bryan-Amaning. When the Huskies played the Trojans in L.A. last year, USC administered an 87-61 whipping against a UW team that featured Quincy Pondexter. Remarkable turnaround.
  • Tuesday, Dec. 28 — Snubbed in Seattle: For the second consecutive year, the Seahawks fail to land a player on the NFC Pro Bowl team, after having at least one selected every year from 20001 through 2008. Safety Earl Thomas could have made it, and almost no one has been a better kickoff return man than Leon Washington.
  • Monday, Dec. 27 — Nebraska wide receiver Niles Paul accuses the Washington Huskies of being world-class trash talkers. “They talked a lot of trash (during a 56-21 loss to Nebraska early in the season), a lot of trash — before game, during the game, after we led, after we were leading. They were non-stop,” says Paul. Paul wouldn’t disclose the nature of UW’s trash talk, but, as with any team, we suspect it ran along the lines of verbalizing cave drawings.

“That Was The Week That Was (TW3)” is published every Monday as part of Sportspress Northwest’s package of home-page features collectively titled, “The Rotation.”

The Rotation’s weekly schedule:

  • Monday: That Was The Week That Was (TW3) — A snarky, day-by-day review of the week just ended.
  • Tuesday: Wayback Machine — Sports historial David Eskenazi’s deep dive into local sports history, replete with photo eye candy.
  • Wednesday: Nobody Asks But Us — We ask, and answer, fun and quirky questions nobody else is asking.
  • Thursday: Water Cooler Cool — Art Thiel takes on the weekend for the benefit of the more casual fan.
  • Friday: Top 5 List — The alpha and omega of Northwest sports, at least as far as we’re concerned.


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