Another day, another loss, in this apocalyptic season for the ages.
The Washington Huskies are now 0-10 for the year, and losers of 12 straight games dating back to 2007.
In the latest disaster last night, in which the tepid Huskies fell to lowly UCLA 27-7, one quote stood out in the aftermath from a senior who had played his final game at Husky Stadium.
“Coach really didn’t want us to get too emotional,” tight end Michael Gottlieb said. “He wanted us to approach it like it was any other game, so I tried to choke back the emotions a little. I was a little emotional, a little sentimental, but for the most part, I just tried to approach it like it was any other game.”
Football is a tough and violent sport, and requires emotion from the warriors who play it. Perhaps most perplexing about Willingham is why he would try to tap out the fire that his players exhibit.
As Willingham’s era at Washington concludes, he’s got one great opportunity for victory over the equally moribund Washington State Cougars next weekend in Pullman.
What the Huskies would respond to most would be for Willingham to be out of character this week. To overturn some tables, and get emotional. To give his players the sense it’s okay to play with some reckless abandon.
Willingham would be wise to mimic Seinfeld’s George Constanza, from that classic episode called The Opposite. George made a startling revelation that could help Willingham too. Not just for the players’ sake, but for Willingham’s also. I want him to taste victory in the 11th hour and avoid the stigma of an 0-12 season.