As a Dawg who has strayed far from the Dawghouse, I have the unique opportunity to look at any Husky game as a road trip. In fact, I've found that some trips to Husky road games are as enjoyable as trips home to see the Dawgs in Husky Stadium. Of course, following the Huskies on the road can be hazardous to your health and challenging to your mental state. As proof, I give you the Huskies Road Record over the past five years:
Needless to say, if you are going to invest in overpriced airfare, suffer through stale peanuts and flat Diet Coke and then endure the relentless needling of euphoric and inebriated opposing fans, it pays to consider your road tripping options. While you don't necessarily want to go to a dull game, you do want at least a reasonable chance to watch the home crowd exit the stadium in a silent and dejected stupor as you pose for photos in front of the final scoreboard with your dubs thrown up.
For me, I've narrowed my list of possible Husky Road Trips down to three options.
Option #1 - Hawaii
The Huskies are expected to be a heavy favorite in this match-up given the struggles that Hawaii Head Coach Norm Chow has had in rekindling the magic that June Jones had once sprinkled in Honolulu.
Reasons to Go: First game of the Chris Petersen Era; Golfing, surfing and hula'ing with fellow Husky Fans; Chance for a big win; "hey, it's Hawaii" ... enough said
Reasons to Stay Home: $$$ Expensive $$$; Game may be boring; full Petersen playbook likely to not be on display; no Cyler Miles
Option #2 - Oregon
Eugene has been a brutal spot for UW to play for more than a decade. The Huskies haven't won in Eugene since they blew out the Ducks 42-14 in 2002. In fact, the Huskies haven't even been within less than 20 points over that time period. Incidentally, did you know that we played in Eugene for three straight years between 2004 and 2006 and that counting this year, we've played at Oregon three more times than they've played at UW?
Regardless, a road trip to Oregon is not a decision to take lightly. While most Oregon fans are cool (and they really are) there are some absolute psychos who treat just about any visiting fan pretty bad, much less one clad in Purple and Gold. I know Duck fans say every fan base has these crazies (and, that's true), but Duck crazies are a whole different level of crazy. You have to go down there with a little humility and a thick skin. On the flip side, the Huskies are going to win there again someday and wouldn't it be grand to say that you were there when it goes down?
Reasons to Go: Chris Petersen has never lost in the state of Oregon; A chance to witness the most cathartic game in the recent history of UW is possible; Relatively easy and affordable road trip for locals; Autzen is sweet
Reasons to Stay Home: F*ck Oregon; Avoid helping the Eugene economy; A very real chance of yet another blowout; Dire concern for personal safety
Option #3 - WSU
A UW roadtrip to WSU is always something to consider if you are a Husky fan. For one thing, there is a good chance that a family member or good friend has a WSU connection making the opportunity for bragging rights a very real prospect. Second of all, everybody in Seattle should take time out to see how the destitute and desperate amongst us live. It feeds our brotherly spirits and compels us to consider our charitable givings. #HugACoug. Thirdly, it is a great place to get your hands on free batteries if your home electronics are starting to run out of juice. Fourthly, WSU students have lots of class and know how to party.
Reasons to Go: Sibling / friendly rivalries; Great chance for a big win in a heated game; UW should be in full stride by the end of season; Affordable; Chance to see the next evolution in the long history of famous "Coug'd It" moments
Reasons to Stay Home: Bed bugs; Snowballs containing D cell batteries; Lack of appreciation for both Coors Light and cow-tipping; Pullman in general
As much as I would love another trip to Hawaii, the decision came down to a trip to Eugene or to Pullman. While I'm as optimistic as I've been in a while about the Huskies having a chance to shock the Ducks (Chris Petersen has never lost to a team from the state of Oregon... I'll just keep telling myself that), I'm not so sure that I actually want to be in Autzen Stadium in the event that the Huskies, led by a rookie QB, derail both the Heisman campaign of Marcus Mariota and the hopes for an Oregon "Natty".
With that in mind, give me Martin Stadium. The last time I visited Martin, the Huskies lost in the infamous "Snow Bowl". Enough time has passed for me to heal that wound and to allow me to savor the eventual hoisting of the Apple Cup upon the frozen tundra of the Palouse amongst a sea of sad Cougs. It's time for me to let go of the past to face down this demon once and for all. I'm in. Anybody have any body armour that I can borrow?