Pac-12: Craig Chambers

2009 adds another chapter of UW-Arizona's history

October, 13, 2009
Posted by's Ted Miller

After the "Immaculate Deflection/Interception/Deception" decided the Arizona-Washington game, my first thought was "Wow."

Then I realized we shouldn't be surprised.

It might be one of the great secrets in college football that the Arizona-Washington series has produced as many wild, weird, meaningful and controversial finishes as any with which I'm familiar.


1992: End of an Era

Top-ranked Washington, riding a 22-game winning streak and seeking its second consecutive national championship, is stunned -- first by quarterback Billy Joe Hobert's suspension after he admitted accepting a $50,000 loan from an Idaho businessman -- and then by Arizona, 16-3.

The extraordinary Don James Era would ingloriously and controversially end three games later -- after the Huskies lost the Rose Bowl to Michigan -- amid NCAA and Pac-10 investigations into the Hobert affair and recruiting violations.

The program went to six Rose Bowls and one Orange Bowl in 18 seasons under James.

It's been to one Rose Bowl since he "retired" 17 years ago.

1998: The Leap by the Lake.

Arizona quarterback Ortege Jenkins, in a desperation scramble with the clock ticking down its final seconds, met three Washington defenders at the 2-yard line.

Jenkins leaped toward them, flipped over them and landed on his feet in the endzone, which gave Arizona a 31-28 victory.

It became one of the great all-time highlight-reel plays.

The Wildcats would lose the next weekend at home against UCLA, 52-28, which would be their only defeat in the greatest season in school history.

Arizona beat Nebraska in the Holiday Bowl and finished 12-1 and ranked No. 4 in the country.

Washington fired Jim Lambright at the end of the season.

1999: The Drive

Washington produced one of the best drives in team history, going 80 yards in 17 plays -- knocking 9:13 off the clock in the process -- on its way to a 33-25 victory over the homestanding Wildcats, who began the season ranked No. 4 but ended up a disappointing 6-6.

A wild, post-game celebration breaks on the field out among Huskies players, coaches and fans. Roses are handed out. A fan produces a sign, "Rose Bowl Bound."

All the Huskies had to do to win their first Pac-10 championship since 1992 was beat a horrible, injury-ravaged UCLA squad and a horrible Washington State team.

Washington lost 23-20 in overtime at UCLA, inspiring more than a few snide comments about the premature post-game celebration.

Stanford went to the Rose Bowl.

2000: 22 points for Curtis Williams

A week after Washington safety Curtis Williams suffered a spinal cord injury at Stanford that would render him a quadriplegic -- and eventually kill him -- the then-seventh-ranked Huskies overcame a 12-point fourth-quarter deficit with a 22-point scoring barrage.

Running back Willie Hurst, a forgotten man much of the season, posted a pair of highlight-reel TD runs, and quarterback Marques Tuiasosopo scored the winning points from two yards out with 1:10 left.

Washington went on to win the Rose Bowl and finished ranked third in the country.

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