The Seattle Times is reporting that Jim Sterk said during yesterday's game that next year's Apple Cup -- in Pullman -- is slated to be played Dec. 4, a byproduct of some scheduling quirks and a desire by both sides to have at least one bye week worked into the schedule.
Truly, I don't see a downside to this. I've always felt, like most, that the Apple Cup should be the final game of the year (the occasional 13th game against Hawaii notwithstanding). And since the college football season now extends into December anyway -- I'm old enough to remember when it used to end this past weekend, except for a handful of games such as Nebraska/Oklahoma -- there's really no reason the Cougs shouldn't take advantage of it like everyone else.*
* Well, except for that whole "not wanting to play extra games and extend the season because student athletes need to be in class because academics are most important," right college presidents who won't let us have a playoff?
Additionally, with Washington likely to be better than WSU once again next year (especially if Jake Locker returns for his senior year), anything that makes the Huskies uncomfortable is going to be an advantage for the Cougs. There's a pretty substantial history at this point of the Cougs playing above their heads against the Huskies in cold conditions. Snow, anyone?
Besides, I'm fairly certain there isn't one Coug fan who doesn't relish the idea of making those mamby-pamby Huskies drive over the passes and freeze their you-know-whats off for three and a half hours in temperatures that will likely be in the 20s. I mean, they were whining about how cold it was last year when I believe game time temperatures were in the 40s.
There is collateral damage from this decision, however.
The game was supposed to be on Nov. 20, the weekend before Thanksgiving. To fill that void, the Cougs are going to -- wait for it ... wait for it ... -- move the game against Cal (originally scheduled for Nov. 6) to that Saturday. Yes, there's going to be yet another home game the Saturday before Thanksgiving. But Sterk has a solution: Since everyone associated with the program knows how poorly attended those games, he's going to make that Dad's Weekend. Ugh.
My solution? Why nbt make that Cal game the Qwest Field game? The majority of the students will be home on the west side of the state already ...
Nonetheless, I like the Apple Cup in December. Bring on the snow!