Washington Huskies – 2012
4 of the last 5 recruiting classes for the Huskies have been top 25. There are fewer than 20 teams in college football that can make that claim. I know Washington is in the 3rd toughest division in college football, but there are only so many 7-5 seasons that can be tolerated in Seattle. Maybe this is the break out year. The chart clearly shows the talent is there to do so. Recruiting will be improving with the upgraded facilities, but coming off the 2011 season, is it time for a coaching upgrade as well?
2012 Team and Coaching Profile
Why do I question the coaching effect at UDub? I know many Huskie fans give Sark a pass for his first year following the depths that Willingham produced. But the fact is that teams with UWs level of talent follow a sub .500 season with a .500 season or better over 75% of the time. 0-12 to 5-7 seems like a big jump, but there was still a lot left on the table.
2009. 2010. 2011. Every season Sarkisian and his staff have under performed predictions by at least one game. He is ranked 7th out of 8 head coaches in the PAC12 for head coach effect heading into 2012. There is no other active coach in the country on a 3 season negative coaching effect streak. The only coaches to make it to a 5th season in recent years were Neuheisel and Shannon (Miami). It is from this trend that I placed him on the 2012 One Star Hot Seat. Anything under 8-4 is another under perform.
2012 Huskies Schedule
Having shown that the top 25 rankings is entirely a win first system, I wonder what compelled the AD to schedule a game with LSU. If that was Louisiana Tech instead, the Huskies would be a near lock for a top 25 finish. While that really doesn’t matter for bowls or anything else, it gives fans and players encouragement that things are improving (even if they are not).
While the numbers predict a 2-1 start before the bye for Washington, that first game has trap written all over it. The San Diego State game is bigger than LSU and has much more riding on it. SDSU will be fired up to try and win. A loss will be devastating to the season and the hot seat will be on fire. Falling out of his boat into Montlake won’t quench the flames.
The CFBMatrix charts shows that Sarkisian is solid in predictions at home and weak on the road. He has just two upset wins at home in the last 3 years. Between Stanford and USC coming to town, they have the best shot of beating the Cardinal. Oregon on the road is just too tough coming off playing Stanford and looking ahead to USC. 1-2 in that 3 game stretch will be good enough and put them at .500 half way through 2012.
The last 6 conference games are not just winnable but very winnable. It’s somewhat funny in that I see that as winnable, but also must wins. At home against Oregon State and Utah. Must wins in front of the season ticket holders. And on the road getting beat by a very weak Arizona team, a weaker Colorado team and a over-hyped Cougar program would all be bad losses. The only one that is an understandable loss is a tough division road test at Cal. Not only do I think they finish 5-1, they must finish 5-1. That is the story the Matrix is weaving for me. They would be 8-4 and right on talent expectations. However, -1 game per season is the Sarkisian trend, a trend I cannot see extending past this year, with or without him.
- Dave Bartoo, The CFBMatrix & your Anti-Homer Follow @cfbmatrix
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March 2012 Game Predictions
Got a lot of twitter comments and feedback. Fans want to be heard.