If you are a trucker, a Lear Jet pilot or a man of the world (such as me), odds are that you are pretty familiar with Sirius XM's College Sports Nation channel. My favorite program on that channel is Chris Childers's College Sports Coast to Coast. Chris, a former reporter for Rivals, is a well-versed student of the game of college football who is both connected and enthusiastic. His show flexes from conference to conference and is a "can't miss" for fans who simply love the game.
Chris is definitely paying attention to the happenings in Seattle involving the grand opening of Husky Stadium and the expectation of Husky fans for Coach Sark and crew to take "the next step":
Looking forward to UW/Boise State game on Saturday. I think it's one of the bigger games in modern Huskies history. #timetoproveit— Chris Childers (@ChildersRadio) August 28, 2013
Chris was nice enough to give us some time to discuss his show and his thoughts on the prospects for Steve Sarkisian and the Huskies in 2013.
Chris Landon: Chris, congratulations on the continuing success of your Sirius XM radio show. A truly national radio show focused solely on college sports is a rarity and your team has pulled it off marvelously. What is that you guys do on your show - your "magic formula" - that compels your fans to stay so dedicated?
I think it is all about our passion and knowledge for the game. College football has been my obsession for a long as I can remember and its almost unbelievable to think that I get to talk about the game that I love everyday for a living. College football fans are very passionate people and I think that they really enjoy listening to and interacting with people who genuinely share the same passion.
CL: You've done some great interviews over the last few years. I've heard you on the air with Mike Leach a few times and, truthfully, those are some of the most entertaining pieces I've ever heard in any mode of media. What is your take on Mike Leach both as an interview and as a coach?
I love that guy. Mike and I used to work together for Sirius XM. He is a great coach, co-host and interview. You never know what it going to be on that man's mind. Mike is a brilliant football coach but I honestly almost never want to talk football with him. He has so many other interests that are fascinating. For example, yesterday when I had him on my show, he gave a 5 minute breakdown of the movie "the Butler." It was epic.
CL: We have our own coach with a reputation. The punch-line on Steve Sarkisian these days is that he is "Seven Win Sark" implying that he is just an average coach. Fair or unfair...and why?
Unfair. I think Sarkisian has done a heck of a job stabilizing UW football. I think he had a great year in 2012 considering all the injuries on the offensive line. I really believe 2013 is the year the Huskies take the next step. The talent level has been upgraded on both sides of the football and the offensive line is healthy. I also think the new facilities are going to significantly help in recruiting.
CL: I've heard you on the air reference UW as one of your dark horse teams to watch in all of the NCAA this season. What makes you optimistic about UW this season?
I'm a big fan of the talent on this team. Keith Price is a big time quarterback. He struggled last year because of the vast injuries to the o-line but this kid can play at a very high level. There is also a ton to like about the skill guys like Bishop Sankey, Jesse Callier, Kasen Williams and Austin Seferian-Jenkins. I expect a lot more points this year. The biggest reason for my enthusiasm is the defense. Justin Wilcox has done a fabulous job whipping that unit into shape and I expect them to be even better this season.
CL: The Pac 12 race is projected by most pundits to finish pretty much as it did last year (reflecting a lack of study on the changes that every team goes through annually). However, we all know that every season brings risers and fallers in every conference. In the Pac 12, who do you see as the big risers from last year and who do you see as possibly taking steps back?
UCLA will fall. Don't trust the defense. Secondary is so young.USC will rise. Depth is still an issue but there is a bunch of talent. I think the defense will improve under defensive coordinator Clancy Pendergast.I also think Oregon State will continue to get better. They have explosive offensive potential and a strong defense.
6. Do you have a prediction for the UW / Boise State game?
UW wins 27-24.
Thanks to Chris Childers for joining us as we all get ready for the Boise State game. If you don't already tune in to Chris's show, you can listen to Sirius XM College Sports Coast to Coast weekdays from 6-9 pm eastern time. His show features a rotation of analysts that include Tim Brown, Gene Chizik and Houston Nutt. Chris always balances his coverage across the whole country, so Pac 12 fans won't get cheated like they may on some other "national" networks.
If you like what you see here, don't forget to give Chris a follow on Twitter (@childersradio) or on Facebook.