The University of Washington excels in both academics and athletic prowess. Still, in the past decade, fans witnessed the school’s two major sports programs – football and men’s basketball – collapse into irrelevance.
The Huskies were an afterthought in Pac-12 football for nearly 15 years. Despite a handful of warm memories thanks to Jake Locker, Keith Price, and continued Apple Cup dominance, the Washington Football team failed to enter the national conversation. That simply left Washington fans left wanting more. And without Washington pushing to a Pac-12 championship, both USC and Oregon remained atop the conference on the west coast. Washington fans had to watch their foes compete with teams like Texas, Florida State, and Ohio State on national platforms. The Huskies’ nightmare run culminated in an 0-12 2008 season.
Football changed first
The fix for the Washington Football team arrived in the form of former Boise State head coach Chris Petersen. Cohen masterfully plucked Boise State’s beloved long-time coach from his position as the most prominent name outside the Power 5. His outstanding playcalling, recruiting, and preparation methods were noteworthy. But when paired with the resources of a traditional Pac-12 powerhouse seated in a growing west coast metropolis — a very real threat to the dominance of Washington’s southern enemies.
Nearing the end of the fourth year of the Petersen era, Washington faithful and Seattle media are expressing disappointment with a two loss season. Washington demands excellence, and Cohen demonstrated that same expectation for the UW basketball program in March.