WSU, congratulations. This was a lucky win, but it was also an earned win. UW played terrible tonight- it seemed like the only times they scored where drives where WSU gifted them great field position. I don't even care that you turned what should have been a 20 yard sack into a 45 yard gain (while down by 18 with 10 minutes to go). I don't even care that on 3rd and 13 UW had a game winning interception slip through Timu's hands only to be miraculously caught for 30 yards. I don't even care that UW's kicker missed a chip shot game winner. WSU got LUCKY as hell, but they also had to overcome a lot of adversity too, and the statistics say WSU pretty much dominated the game (WSU had 36% more yardage than UW). Really the only positive thing I can say for Washington was that they got the job done in the red zone.
I'm really glad that if UW was going to blow an 18 point 4th quarter lead to lose to WSU, it was this year. It really makes no major difference in their bowl assignment. Even if the Huskies lose their bowl game, 7-6 is not bad given the adversity the team faced this season. A win would have been nice, but it would have been probably the worst 8-4 Huskies team I've ever watched. This team probably deserves to be 6-6, so I'll take 7-5.
Keith Price has really regressed this year. Even his mechanics have regressed. It's funny, I can actually tell how well he's playing based on how fast he gets the ball out. It seems like when he's playing like crap, his release becomes much slower- around the level of Darron Thomas or early-2011 RG3. Price had basically one nice drive today, and on that one drive he was getting the ball out of his hand quickly. It's so weird that he has the capability of a quick release but so often this season hasn't used it. Price's pocket presence has also regressed.
I still feel that the WR corps is a problem though. UW's line is doing a very decent job by recent standards, but Price has mastered the art of the coverage sack this season. I would guess that he's near the top of the Pac-12 in throwaways too, which are about 2/3 of a sack from an ANYA (adjusted net yards per attempt) perspective. A lot of that is on Price, but a lot of that is also on the WRs for not getting open. ASJ is a great player, but he's not fast and doesn't separate- so he doesn't make a great target under duress. Neither does Kasen Williams. Really, UW doesn't have that guy they could count on to consistently get open. Not one guy. Say what you want about Kearse, but he could consistently get open. I knew he was a valuable player on this offense, but I think I underestimated how much the offense would miss him. I really hope Daniels and Stringfellow remain committed to UW, because the huskies badly need help at WR. When your receivers aren't getting open against WSU, you should be alarmed.
I think WSU definitely earned this win, but I also think that WSU wasn't all that great today- it was more a case of UW playing terrible football. Is 17 penalties a UW school record? I was actually more scared of WSU in each of the last two Apple Cups. I think those WSU teams would have blown out UW today.
Hopefully this helps Leach last another season. If it does, then I'm actually glad UW lost today. A win was fairly meaningless from UW's point of view. And Leach doesn't look like he's going to be the kind of savior people hoped he'd be.