Apple Cup Series: Legendary games and legendary figures

Ryan Tolar, Washington Huskies. Wahsington State. Apple Cup. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Ryan Tolar, Washington Huskies. Wahsington State. Apple Cup. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images) /
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Apple Cup
Paul Wulff, Washington State Cougars football, Apple Cup. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images) /

The 2018 Apple Cup will be played in Pullman, Washington. There have been some memorable games and memorable players. We look back at a few of them.

History shows that the Washington Huskies have won more than twice as many Apple Cup games than the Washington State Cougars in this annual clash. What is becoming legendary, more recently, in this series, is how lopsided the games have been since Chris Petersen became head coach at UW in 2014. This is evident by the Huskies’ average margin of victory of 28 points in the last four Apple Cup contests.

2008 – Paul Wulff

This story may not be “legendary” by some definitions, but it was a memorable moment in Apple Cup history, although not on the field action. At a press conference in December 2007, Paul Wulff was introduced as Washington State’s new head coach.

When he was hired, Wulff became one of four Wazzu head coaches that had also played in the Apple Cup. He was actually part of five Cups as a player, going 3-2 because he was red-shirted for one season. Unfortunately for Wulff and the Cougs, that success was not matched when he was running the program.

Wulff has the lowest winning percentage of any head coach in WSU history at .182. His success in the Apple Cup was not much better with one win in four games (.250). However, that one win was memorable, if not legendary.

Paul Wulff’s lone win in the Apple Cup as Washington State’s head coach occurred in his first season. That win was preceded several months prior by a quote from Wulff. According to the Everett Herald, at the aforementioned ‘presser’ in which he stated, “…Huskies bark and bite. Cougars hunt and kill…”

Eleven months later, the Cougars did ‘hunt and kill’, in a figurative sense, when they won the 2008 Apple Cup in double overtime, 16-13. That year’s game has become known by those familiar with the series as the “Crapple Cup,” because WSU came into the contest at 1-10 and UW was winless in ten games. “Legendary”? Certainly for the lack of competitive success by both teams that season.

We’ll work back to the start of Don James’ tenure at Washington to pick out some highlights from Apple Cup games gone by.