Seattle has gotten a pretty dubious rap over the last few years in the world of collegiate football, what with a 0-12 season back in 2008, constant cloud cover and rain and a stadium that is almost 100 years old. Yet Seattle still manages to make the University of Washington the best sporting experience in college football.
Here are the top eight reasons why the University of Washington is the place to be on game day.
A typical game in Florida could be roughly 75 degrees and a balmy breeze. A game in Cincinnati might be snow with a wicked crosswind. The beauty of Seattle is you get the best of both worlds. You can get rain, sun, wind, hail…oh, and did I mention this is all in one game?
College football games are supposed to be loud, raucous affairs, but UW has a special addition to the average noise level.
After every score for the Huskies, a siren is blared for a jarring 15 seconds. By the time your ears have stopped ringing, you are accosted by another 10 seconds of siren after UW has made the extra point. Make sure to pre-order your earplugs.
Harry the Husky is easily one of the most respected mascots in the Pac-10 and probably the least intoxicated (have you seen the Stanford tree?).
For years Harry has been at every game, but not alone. Ever since 1922 there has been a real husky mascot alongside the costume, starting with Frosty and now with the current mascot, Dubs. I mean, come on…how can you say no to that face?
Did you get your earplugs yet? As if the siren was not enough to convince you, Husky Stadium has set the record for the loudest college football stadium ever. For fans watching the game from home, the cameras have a tendency to shake. That’s because fans are screaming, stomping their feet and generally causing a ruckus.
1992 capped this fact when during a night game against Nebraska, ESPN recorded 135 decibels of sound...FYI, that is well above the threshold of pain.
Fans are always looking for ways to connect with their teams. Some get tattoos of their favorite player, while others try to shove their way to the front of the crowd just to touch a player's hand. Sad but true.
However, for UW there is a special connection between the players and the hundreds of fans that pack the stadium. When star quarterback Jake Locker said he would be coming back, you would've thought the prodigal son had returned. When running back Chris Polk stood in front of the band conducting "Bow Down to Washington," the stadium erupted into a thundering chorus.
What do Mt. Everest and Husky Stadium have in common? They both are nearly vertical. Husky Stadium houses some of the steepest stands in any college stadium, not to mention the height—you could literally look a seagull in the eye mid-flight.
But the best part about it all is the views. With the Cascade Mountains to the east and Mt. Rainier to the south, it has annually been voted the most scenic stadium for college campuses.
Band geeks get suddenly cool at UW. One of the last high-stepping bands out there, the Husky Marching Band keeps fans entertained with shows for all ages. And yes, they did a Monty Python show.
Did I mention they play requests at tailgates? After the game, a number of band members go to the parking lot, where dozens of RVs and tailgaters are waiting with food and booze. Want to hear them play "Tequila?" Better have some burgers for them. How about the classic "Louie Louie?" Start handing out the beer. Did I mention they dance?
Of course, the core of any college football game is the fans. At UW the fans are some of the most dedicated and spirited in the nation. Students camp out the night before a game just to try to get a ticket. Fans stand through all manner of weather—rain, sleet and hail—to cheer their Dawgs on.
The student section, also known as the Dawg Pack, is full of spirited students wearing as little as purple booty shorts or as much as a full-on dog costume. The fanatic following is the reason going to the game is so fun, aside from the game itself.
All in all, Seattle is a good place for coffee, rain and football. UW clearly has a unique stadium and a one of a kind experience for fans and visitors alike.
Sadly, Husky Stadium will be undergoing renovations starting this year until 2013. Until the face-lift is done, the Huskies will be playing at Qwest Field in downtown Seattle.
Stay tuned, folks. The truly special stadium can only get better from here.