Seattle Apple Cup Game Highlights
In the days leading up to the game it was reported that WSC (the school was named Washington State College until 1959) Head Coach William "Lone Star" Dietz wants to win this game as he never wanted to win before.
This from a coach that led WSC to a 14-0 win over Brown in the 1916 Rose Bowl.
WSC were favorites but Washington Coach Claude Hunt said, "We've got a fighting chance. I think the squad has the real spirit to give the visitors all the opposition that they can wish for."
On Thanksgiving Day, it was WSC's defense that crushed Washington's spirit handing the Huskies their first home loss in a decade. The Cougars held the Huskies to no first downs and no passing yards in the game. Meanwhile, the Cougars scored a touchdown in the second and fourth quarters to capture their seventh win of the season against no losses and one tie.
Ticket prices for the 20th meeting between the two schools were two dollars for a reserved seat, a dollar for an unreserved seat, and 25 cents for those in high school.
The Huskies entered the game with a perfect 5-0 mark while WSC was 2-1. Washington had outscored its five opponents by a 130-9 margin and had not scored fewer than 20 points in any of those games.
Despite Washington's impressive credentials WSC coach Babe Hollingbery, who was in his first year as the head of the Cougars, said a day prior to the game, "We'll trot out everything to win, and we plan to win."
In front of an audience of 25,000, WSC shocked UW 9-6, holding to Huskies to two field goals.
WSC was down 6-2 late in the fourth quarter with the ball on its own 38, but drove down to Washington's 10-yard line when quarterback Herbert "Butch" Meeker faked a handoff to two backs that caused the Husky defense to converge at the middle of the line. Still with the ball, Meeker ran untouched into the end zone to put the Cougars ahead with two minutes left.
Washington responded by driving to the Cougars' 17, but WSC ended any chance of a Husky comeback with an interception. While the Huskies held the advantage in total yards entering the fourth quarter, WSC outgained Washington 103-57 in the final period.
The Cougars would go on to a 6-1 record, shutting out each of their final three opponents while Washington ended the season with an 8-2 mark.
The six points by Washington turned out to be a season low for the Huskies.
Washington State College was rolling in 1930. Cougar Head Coach Babe Hollingbery had led the team to a 7-0 record and on the cusp on the school's second Rose Bowl appearance heading into the Washington game.
"We are in the most ticklish spot of the season this week," Hollingbery said days before the game. "A loss to the Huskies would be a terrific blow, and we know we have to win."
WSC was heavily favored to win; some even made the Cougars a two to three touchdown favorite.
The Cougars did win, but most likely, it wasn't in the manner that the majority of the 42,000 in attendance expected. The game's only score was set up when Washington's Merle Hufford fumbled the opening kickoff and Elmer Schwartz recovered for WSC.
WSC took advantage of the turnover as Lyle Maskell's 41-yard field goal gave the Cougars a 3-0 lead 58 seconds in to the game.
The Cougars made that lead stand the rest of the way, winning their eighth straight game. WSC traveled east to defeat Villanova two weeks later to finish the regular season with a perfect 9-0 mark.
WSC did earn a trip to the Rose Bowl, falling to Alabama 24-0.
The motivation for the Cougars entering the 1951 game stemmed from the waning stages of the 1950 game in Spokane. Cruising to what would eventually be a 52-21 win; Washington quarterback Don Heinrich found himself three completions shy of breaking the all-time national season record for completions.
Trouble was, it was the fourth quarter and the Cougars had possession of the ball. In order to give Heinrich a shot at the record, UW needed to gain possession of the ball; therefore, the Huskies let WSC do something that is normally unheard of in a game, and that is score.
Washington gave WSC a touchdown (a 22-yard touchdown pass from Bob Gambold to Ed Barker, for the record) got the ball back, and Heinrich eventually got his record. To add insult to injury, Washington star running back Hugh McElhenny capped the scoring with an 83-yard touchdown jaunt to complete the blowout.
"A lousy trick," WSC Head Coach Forest Evashevski said.
So much did Washington's gift touchdown resonate with Evashevski that he made this preseason statement:
"I don't care if we lose every other game we play, we WILL beat UW."
In addition, Evashevski posted a sign in the locker room that read:
Remember 1950 - UW 52, WSC 21
If the Cougars would give it back to Washington, they would have to do it in Seattle.
Things did not start out well for WSC as the Cougars fell behind 18-6 at the half. However, the Cougars extracted their revenge by storming back with 21 second half points, including two third quarter touchdowns to capture a 27-25 win. WSC outgained UW 383 to 276; had 23 first downs to Washington's 10, and ran 89 total plays to Washington's 54.
It was the most points scored by WSC since the series began in 1900.
The week leading up to the 1957 game, Washington Head Coach Jim Owens made a special emphasis of defending against Washington State's passing attack.
It didn't work.
WSC quarterback Bob Newman completed 14 passes, including eight to Don Ellingsen, for 195 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Cougars to a 27-7 win over UW in Seattle.
The 20-point margin of victory was the largest by a WSC team in the history of the series up to that time.
To sum up the day for Owens and his Husky team, Washington was two and a half minutes late getting on the field to start the third quarter and was penalized 15 yards for delay of game.
On the surface, the 1967 Apple Cup looked to have all the makings of a Husky win. The Cougars entered the game with a 1-8 record and had lost to the Huskies eight consecutive times in the series.
However, despite their record, the Cougars had nearly defeated Oregon and beat Idaho 52-14 in their last two games. In addition, the Huskies were 5-4 and had lost their last two games, including a 48-0 blowout at the hands of UCLA two weeks earlier.
The game was to be televised live, which also was a bad omen for Washington as the Huskies had lost four consecutive games in which they appeared on live television.
The Cougars were down 7-3 at the half but rallied to take the lead in the third quarter. A 10-yard touchdown pass from Mike Cadigan to Larry Thatcher capped an 11-play, 77-yard drive.
The issue was in doubt until Washington kicker Don Martin, who kicked four field goals in the Huskies 19-7 win in the 1966 Apple Cup, missed a 31-yard field goal with 30 seconds remaining that would have given UW the win.
"Easiest one I had all year," Martin said of the kick.
"I don't believe it," WSU co-captain Dick Baird said. "We only won two games this year, and this has to be the greatest."
Not since 1958 had Washington had a losing season. That streak was in jeopardy of ending in 1968 as the Huskies entered the Apple Cup with a 3-4-2 mark.
The streak would end as the Cougars, who were 2-6-1 entering the game, pitched their only shutout in the history of the series.
Senior Hank Grenda was the surprise starter at quarterback for the Cougars. Grenda, who started only his second game since early last year, proceeded to score one rushing touchdown, passed for two others, kick three PATs, a field goal, and also did all of the punting.
WSU Head Coach Jim Sweeney had not decided until the morning of game day to start Grenda. Sweeney did not tell Grenda that he was starting until just before leaving the locker room.
"We had been using him a lot in practice," Sweeney said. "He looked good all week."
WSU enjoyed a 10-0 halftime lead, and Washington amassed only four first downs and 71 total yards in the first half. Things did not get much better for the Huskies as they had a touchdown called back due to a penalty at the beginning of the second half.
Sweeney became the first WSU coach to win in his first season against the Huskies since Babe Hollingbery in 1926. As for the Huskies, their troubles may have been best summed up by Seattle P-I writer Phil Taylor as he called the loss, "one of the darkest days in the history of Washington football."
With the departure of renowned quarterback Sonny Sixkiller, Washington had struggled in 1973. The Huskies entered the Apple Cup game with a 2-8 overall mark and a 0-6 record in Pacific-8 Conference play. WSU, on the other hand, was 4-6, but had won its last three games.
The Cougars left little doubt as to the outcome of this one, bolting out to a 28-0 lead en route to a halftime advantage of 42-6.
The Huskies rallied to cut their deficit to 42-26 in the third quarter but the Cougars scored the final 10 points to post the most points ever scored by the team against Washington.
Andrew Jones rushed for 139 yards leading a Cougar rushing attack that ran up 284 yards while UW totaled minus 14 yards rushing. In all, WSU tallied 541 yards in total offense.
Like 1972, the 1981 Apple Cup featured two ranked teams: No. 14 Washington State and No. 17 Washington. But this game featured something much more significant and unique to any game in the series up to this point -- a Rose Bowl berth was at stake.
A WSU win would guarantee the Cougars their first trip to Pasadena since the 1931 Rose Bowl. A Washington win, along with a little help from USC, would earn UW the right to go to the Rose Bowl.
Done in by six turnovers (three fumbles, three interceptions) the Cougars saw their Rose Bowl dreams denied while Washington punched its ticket to Pasadena.
In addition to the turnovers, the Cougars lost a main cog in their offense when quarterback Clete Casper went out in the second quarter with an injured hamstring and did not return.
WSU was up 7-3 but a diving touchdown catch by Paul Skansi with eight seconds left in the first half propelled Washington to a 10-7 halftime advantage.
WSU tied the game at 10 on its first second half possession, but Washington responded by scoring 10 quick points with an 80-yard touchdown drive and a field goal set up by a WSU fumble deep in its own territory. It proved to be a deficit WSU was unable to overcome.
Despite the disappointment of seeing their Rose Bowl dreams dashed, the Cougars did accept a bid to play in the Holiday Bowl. It would be the Cougars first bowl game since the '31 Rose Bowl.
As WSU Head Coach Jim Walden said, "If I said before the season that we were going to a bowl this year, everyone would have laughed and written stories saying I was wacko."
Besides, WSU would have its revenge over the next two years.
It had been a frustrating start to the 1983 season for WSU Head Coach Jim Walden.
After a 27-7 win over Montana State, the Cougars gave No. 6 Michigan all it could handle at Ann Arbor before falling 20-17.
But after taking Michigan to the brink, the Cougars fell off a cliff themselves, following up the Michigan game with a 45-6 blowout loss to No. 7 Arizona.
Through six games, the Cougars were 2-4, with their fourth defeat coming at the hands of UCLA, 24-14, at Pullman. Prior to the UCLA game, Walden said, "We haven't played but one good half in the last three weeks, and that's what is driving me crazy. There is no pattern to it. We can't put one full football game together."
And after UCLA, Walden stated, "This could go down as one of the most talented, bad football teams in Washington State history."
Perhaps taking motivation from their coach, the Cougars rallied to win four straight games heading into the Apple Cup. Washington, meanwhile, was in what seemed to become its customary position of playing for a berth to the Rose Bowl with a win over WSU. The Huskies brought an 8-2 record into the Apple Cup game and only needed a win over the Cougars to go to Pasadena, a trip that was denied the team the year previous by WSU's monumental 24-20 upset in Pullman.
Not surprisingly, the 15th-ranked Huskies were heavily favored in the game. The Husky offense was averaging 413.7 yards per game, 14th best in the nation. Washington needed just 70 yards to break the school offensive mark set in 1980. A dominating performance took place on that soggy day at UW Stadium, just not from the team that most people expected. For the second straight year, WSU denied Washington a trip to the Rose Bowl by holding the vaunted Husky offense to only two field goals in its 17-6 win.
Kerry Porter rushed for 169 yards, ending the season with exactly 1,000 yards and Richard Calvin scored on two short touchdown runs to propel the Cougars to their second straight victory in the series.
In handing Washington its first home loss in 17 games, the Cougars rushed for 224 yards and held the Huskies to 67 yards on the ground.
"It makes it even better that we did it here this year," Porter said. "Whether we go to a bowl game or not, beating the Dogs makes this season worthwhile."
Despite their 7-4 record, the Cougars were denied a bowl bid while Washington settled for a trip to the Aloha Bowl. In spite of not being able to go to a bowl game, there seemed to be little doubt to the Cougars as to who was the best team in the Pac-10.
"I have been here four years and my dream has been to play on the best team in the Pac-10," Dan Lynch said. "I feel like I have done that."
How cold was it during Apple Cup Week 1985?
It was so cold that the Washington maintenance crew spent the entire Wednesday night into Thursday morning at Husky Stadium flushing each toilet every 15 minutes to prevent the pipes from freezing.
It was so cold that the temperature dipped to a record low of 19 degrees at Sea-Tac Airport, Friday. In addition, seven and a half inches of snow had fallen at the airport.
Efforts to keep the Husky Stadium surface playable included two Zamboni machines and over 6,000 pounds of fertilizer. Skies were clear with temperature in the 20s the day of Apple Cup. A crowd of 49,302 (there were 10,895 no shows) witnessed the Cougars take their third Apple Cup in four years.
Tied at 14 at the end of three quarters, Rypien capped a 9-play, 84-yard drive with a 15-yard touchdown pass to Kitrick Taylor that gave WSU a 21-14 lead.
With 2:25 left to play and facing a fourth down, Washington quarterback Chris Chandler connected with Lonzell Hill for a 50-yard touchdown pass to pull the Huskies to within one at 21-20. The two-point try failed, however, and the Cougars escaped Seattle with the win.
Mark Rypien threw three touchdown passes and Rueben Mayes rushed for 167 yards for WSU, who finished the season with a 4-7 record.
The 6-4 Cougars entered the '94 Apple Cup on a two-game losing skid while Washington was 7-3 and ranked 18th in the nation.
The '94 Cougar team was one of extremes. The offense had averaged only 15.9 points and 275 yards a game. On the other hand, the defense, which had garnered the name "The Palouse Posse," was stout, holding opponents to an average of 12.7 points a game.
Two years after the famed "Snow Bowl," it looked to be a repeat setting for the '94 edition, as snow began to fall at Martin Stadium two and a half hours before kickoff. Plows were able to remove the snow from the field prior to the game, and while snow fell intermittingly during the game, it proved to be nothing of a repeat of 1992.
What was a repeat of 1992 was the Cougars' domination over their in-state rivals. WSU scored three first half touchdowns to cruise to the win. The maligned offense produced 327 total yards. Quarterback Chad Davis threw for 193 yards. Kevin Hicks rushed for 85 yards and a touchdown while Derek Sparks ran for 62 yards and two touchdowns.
The "Palouse Posse" kept up their dominance, holding Washington to 197 total yards and one touchdown that was scored on Washington's first possession of the game.
The win gave the Cougars a 7-4 mark and a berth into the Alamo Bowl, where they defeated Baylor 10-3.
Official Website of Washington State University Athletics | Bohler Athletic Complex | PO Box 641602 Pullman, WA 99164-1602 | 1.800.GO.COUGS