When you’re from the state of Washington, I guess you get used to this sort of thing.
Of course I’m talking about defeat – stinging defeats that leave you feeling like your team has just found an entirely new way to lose a football game. I felt that way this last weekend more times than I can remember in a two-day span.
It started with a trip to the University of Washington to take in the Huskies-BYU game. It was shaping up to be a great day: The Huskies were competing, the BYU fans were annoying, and all things considered, it was looking like a great ballgame.
Then Jake Locker scored what all thought to be the game-tying touchdown with only two seconds left in the game.
Then an innocent flick of the wrist set the chain in motion for the rest of the day.
With Locker’s innocent toss of the football, the referee made an equally decisive toss: The toss of a penalty flag. The sin? Excessive celebration. The result? A 35-yard PAT try to knot the game up at 28.
One snap later, heartbreak. BYU blocked the PAT and stormed out of Seattle with a stolen win.
As I trudged down from the second level after the game, my weekend only got worse. I’d been tracking the progress of my alma mater, Eastern Washington University, through my cell phone, as they took on the Colorado Buffaloes. Eastern, a Football Championship Subdivision team, had been winning by two scores entering the final frame against Colorado, a Football Bowl Subdivision team. It would have been the first time Eastern had defeated an FBS team in school history.
But now. The chirp of my cell phone as I shared in the Huskies grim attitudes only made me feel worse. Colorado had tied the game late in the fourth quarter. Then, not a minute later, they had returned an interception and held on to defeat the Eagles 31-24. Things couldn’t get any worse.
That is, until I decided to watch the Cougars; I figured after last week’s defeat, my sibling’s university could use my support. Unfortunately, a 66-3 loss to California wasn’t what I thought might happen.
Oh well, I thought to myself on Saturday night, at least we have the Seahawks.
I’m just glad there weren’t any breakable items near me while viewing that game because the Seahawks turned in a “game” which left me with only questions.
How do you have more punts (11) than points (10)?
How does the “rebuilt” running game rush for only 85 yards?
Why is your backup quarterback fielding punts in the fourth quarter of a blowout game when your starting quarterback has a back injury that may flair up at any moment?
How does an offensive line, touted to be the best since the Seahawks went to Super Bowl XL, suddenly forget how to block?
How does Seattle punter Ryan Plackemeier kick two, yes, two, 22-yard punts?
How do your receivers forget how to catch the football?
And finally, how do you not see a 6-foot-7 defensive end lining up all by himself on a field goal?
I’m not sure the Seahawks know the answer that question today. Their failure to account for Ryan Denney, the Bill in question, led to a fake field goal touchdown pass from the punter – punter!- Brian Moorman, the holder for Buffalo’s field goal unit, to Denney that all but sealed the game.
That touchdown rubbed a bit of salt in the wound and officially gave last weekend the title of Worst Weekend Ever for Washington football.
The only thing a fan can do is hope next weekend is better.
Here in Seattle, it seems we do that a lot.