The UW Huskies routed the Idaho Vandals Saturday, displaying both a huge talent gap and a continuing cupcake schedule crafted by Chris Peterson.
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The UW Huskies did what they were expected to do in blowing out the Idaho Vandals Saturday. Quarterback Jake Browning tied Keith Price, Jake Locker, and Chris Rowland in Washington history with five touchdown passes in a game. And he didn’t even play the whole game.
Safety Budda Baker and company didn’t allow a pass completion over 15 yards all game until Baker was taken out and the game was decided.
The Vandals made things somewhat interesting in the first half, containing the UW Huskies and sustaining a drive while coming a half-inch away from a touchdown twice. Then the Huskies out-gained Idaho 233 to 9 in the second quarter and piled on 28 points during the period.
The UW Huskies won’t be playing meaningful games until September 24th, when they meet Arizona in Tucson to open Pac-12 play. They will take on Portland State University next week in yet another easy matchup.
The early-season schedule crafted by Peterson and company can work in two ways. One, as many top teams in the country do, they build confidence by playing FCS teams and/or outside their conference before the season truly heats up a few weeks in. These games are like preseason matchups. The final scores don’t matter that much and coaches can pull their key players–like Browning and Baker for the UW Huskies–after a quarter or two. Key players get in-game experience after endless spring practices and hype, and the coaching staff can see what they have behind their starters.
On the other hand, easy schedules like the UW Huskies’ can de-energize a fanbase that hasn’t had a national contender in Montlake in over a decade. Most of the players in these games don’t earn much valuable experience because the games aren’t ever in doubt, or shouldn’t be. Then, there are the Appalachian State disasters that lurk in the nightmares of contending coaches.
After the UW Huskies’ 59-14 blowout over Idaho, we don’t really know if this team can hold up against a real opponent. We have to wait another two weeks.