Husky Football starts tonight!

1 Sep

The Washington Huskies play San Diego State at CenturyLink Field starting at 7:30 p.m. tonight.

Husky Stadium is being renovated and plans to open in 2013. This is the 25-year anniversary of the “new” Husky Stadium. 1987 was the first year that the new upperdeck on the North side was in use.

Here is a look back at some memorable UW home openers:

Sept. 17, 1983: No. 16 Washington 25, No. 8 Michigan 24.

The fans shouted, “Go for two,” and coach Don James did. Trailing 24-23 with 34 seconds left, Steve Pelluer found Larry Michael in the back of the end zone. Pelluer (27-of-33 passing) had teamed up with Mark Pattison for a touchdown on the previous play.

Sept. 19, 1970: Washington 42, Michigan State 16.

Super soph Sonny Sixkiller led the pass-happy Huskies, who were picked to finish last in the Pac-8, to a thrilling win. Sixkiller set a school record with 313 total yards, and Seattle Prep All-American Mark Wheeler rushed for 145 yards.

Sept. 7, 1985: No. 16 Oklahoma State 31, No. 12 Washington 17.

Cowboys RB Thurman Thomas sliced and diced the UW defense for 237 yards on 40 carries. He also passed for a TD to break a 17-17 tie. Portable lights were trucked in for what is believed to be the first night game played by Washington in Husky Stadium.

Sept. 20, 1975: No. 8 Texas 28, Washington 10.

The Longhorns racked up 440 yards rushing, including 198 by power-running Earl Campbell. It was James’ first home game as UW coach.

Sept. 23, 1950: Washington 33, Kansas State 7.

It was the first game played with the 15,000-seat southside upper deck in use. Hugh McElhenny established two school records by rushing for 177 yards and scoring on a 91-yard run, and Don Heinrich became the first Husky to throw four TDs in a game. The Huskies’ all-time team from the first 50 years was introduced at halftime.

Sept. 13, 1986: No. 17 Washington 40, No. 10 Ohio State 7.

The 33-point margin of defeat was the biggest for Ohio State since the Buckeyes lost to Purdue 41-6 in 1967. “I never dreamed that would ever happen to Ohio State any time,” said James. “If they played the Chicago Bears, you wouldn’t think it would happen.”

Sept. 10, 1994: No. 25 Washington 25, No. 18 Ohio State 16.

Napoleon Kaufman scampered for 211 rushing yards as UW built a 22-0 lead. “Write his name down as a serious challenger for the Heisman Trophy,” said Brent Musburger on ABC.

Sept. 5, 1987: No. 13 Washington 31, Stanford 21.

At the beginning of the game, officials released 72,000 purple and gold balloons to celebrate what police say was the largest group ever to attend a sporting event in the state. It was the first game using the new upper deck on the north side.

Sept. 4, 1993: No. 12 Washington 31, No. 15 Stanford 14.

Cheers erupted from the docks east of the stadium as James and his wife, Carol, arrived by boat. The Hall of Fame coach had retired in August after 18 years coaching in protest of Pac-10 sanctions against UW. Kaufman ran for 196 yards.

Sept. 19, 1964: Air Force 3, No. 7 Washington 2.

Trailing 3-0, Washington couldn’t punch it over the goal line in the final minute with a first down at the Air Force 5-yard line. Junior Coffey was met by a wall inches from the goal line on fourth down.

Oct. 4, 1969: No. 1 Ohio State 41, Washington 14.

The defending national champs ripped through the Huskies on a sun-soaked afternoon. Jim Otis gained 111 yards and scored three touchdowns for Woody Hayes’ team. The Buckeyes had enjoyed $11.75 steak dinners at the Space Needle the night before.

Sept. 6, 2008: No. 15 BYU 28, Washington 27.

Jake Locker scored an apparent game-tying TD with two seconds left but was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct (tossing the ball in the air in celebration) and the point-after try was no good from 35 yards.

Sept. 9, 1978: No. 12 UCLA 10, No. 11 Washington 7.

The 1978 Rose Bowl winners slipped on a wet and rainy day. Kenny Easley’s blocked punt in the second quarter provided the Bruins their only touchdown when a teammate recovered the ball in the end zone. Easley also had a key fourth-quarter interception of a pass by Tom Porras.

Sept. 22, 1962: No. 10 Washington 7, No. 7 Purdue 7.

A record crowd of 55,800 watch UW outgain the favored Boilermakers by a 2-1 margin, but UW missed a field-goal attempt with less than 30 seconds to play. The kick was long enough but wide to the right by a yard.

Sept. 8, 2007: Washington 24, No. 22 Boise State 10.

It was the Huskies’ first win over a ranked team since 2003 and the first 2-0 start since 2001. The win snapped the Broncos’ 14-game winning streak, the longest in the nation.

Sept. 28, 1991: No. 4 Washington 56, Kansas State 3.

The Three B’s — Beno Bryant, Jay Barry and Mario Bailey — scored two touchdowns each, and quarterback Billy Joe Hobert led a balanced attack that produced 478 yards (238 rushing, 240 passing).

This timeline was orginally published online at


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