On Friday's during the season we usually preview the upcoming game. Since this is a bye week I want to focus on the actual state of our blog and the community we have created.
The blog was created in June of 2006 in response to all the negativity that was going on during that time. I didn't create it with the purpose of supporting Tyrone Willingham. I created it with the sole purpose of being fair and at the same time supporting the kids in the program in a positive way.
I supported Ty for almost two years. He lost serious traction with me during the "Suddenly Senior" escapade when we lost to a terrible Stanford team. By the middle of his third season I had seen enough and my patience was officially exhausted when we blew a big lead to Arizona.
We then all suffered together through that terrible 0-12 season before Sark was hired to save the day. It was tough being a Husky fan but somehow we all pulled together and this little blog that started out with two regular readers has grown exponentially over the years.
The blog started off being published independently on Blogger until it was picked up by SB Nation in August of 2008. Along the way I teamed up with former Husky Blogger Nathan Ware once a week for a Q&A column in the old Seattle PI. Nathan was excellent and we complimented each other pretty well.
Nathan gave up blogging for a couple of reasons. Number one was the desire to simply become a fan again. Blogging during the Willingham years was also more like being on the receiving end of a flogging. He was tired of the negativity and felt the time he was allotting to this was better spent with work and family.
This blog has grown into one of the most actively followed Husky sites on the Internet. We average over 2700 unique visitors per day which is pretty cool. We try to have at least one new article per day and with the addition of volunteers this season we usually have more than that.
We are currently doing a survey for SB Nation and as usual it is always interesting to read the comments, suggestions, and criticisms. (See more after the break)
One of things I always find amusing is that many out there are under the impression that these blogs are money makers. I once felt that way and was just floored when I found out that sites such as USS Mariner and Lookout Landing which have three times the visitors we do make little or no revenue during the year.
We didn't make any money the first year or so with SB Nation. Last year they started sharing some ad revenue which amounted to $150 per quarter. Maybe we should have hired Larry Scott to handle the negotiations for us when we had the chance...just kidding.
So these blogs are basically a labor of love for an older guy like me and for the younger guys a good way to polish their chops on the way to a paying job at some sort of sports news outlet. The only way you can possibly make money is making these blogs subscription sites which cover recruiting.
We are not going there for a number of reasons. Number one would be that the guys at Dawgman are good friends and I wouldn't want to compete with them. Number two is that they are so well established even if they weren't friends they would crush us or anyone else who chooses to compete with them. Number three is they are simply the best in the business...If you want to follow recruiting...do what I do...subscribe to Dawgman.
I try to publish recruiting summaries about once a month this time of year. Keep in mind that is a slow period because the high school kids are concentrating on their seasons and the college coaches of course have their own seasons to take care of.
This week is an exception because it is a bye week. I expect a lot of news to flow from the recruiting sites and ESPN about Washington's activity throughout the West. These guys are tireless recruiters so I expect some news to break on Sunday.
One criticism we did receive from a couple of readers was that we don't publish enough new content every day. In fact one reader said we were a slow site in comparison to Lookout Landing and Sea Gulls. He asked for more articles on position battles, recruiting, game clips...all pretty credible requests.
Personally I think we have done a great job with content this year. In fact we publish a lot more content than most of the subscription sites do. Bugs, Gecko, Todd, Cassino, DenvDawg, and everyone else have contributed some great stuff this year.
What we have built is a virtual living room where our members can come in and discuss college football in an intelligent forum. We strive to be different. Our stories are written with the goal of stimulating discussion. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't.
One thing that has become a huge success that I am proud of is our game threads. We had over a thousand posts on last weeks Washington/Utah thread! Our blog has become the place to hang out on game day...that isn't me...that is all of you who are posting great commentary on the thread during the game.
For the most part everyone gets along here and that includes fans of other schools. We officially welcome interaction with fans of other schools. I think it makes things a lot more interesting. The LSU fans sure were a welcome addition last season.
So what are a couple things we can do in the future that would make this blog better?
Here are a list of my suggestions...and keep in mind these all things which don't fall into the range of either my talent or time limitations.
1. I wish we had somebody who did Farks. Rattlesnake over at Dawgman is hilarious. Who can ever forget hisseries?
2. A cartoonist would be awesome. Who wants to be the next Bob McCausland?
3. It would be nice if we had a guy that could chop up a little film and lead some chalk talk. Just for example "Big Train" just contributed a nice piece just this morning.
So anyway everyone thanks for reading, thanks for the contributions, and understand that this is our community and we can make this virtual living room into whatever we want it to be.