Sunday, 18 August 2013

Isn't all of it just purdy?

You may have noticed the blog looks a little different today. That's because I finally put in the time to reorganize the blog and spice it up a little to make it something that you actually want to look at. I'm particularly proud of the main photo collage at the top of the screen. I sincerely hope that if you are reading a Pac-12 blog then you know everyone pictured in the collage but just in case, here's a little handy guide to help you out in case any of those images have you stumped.

Top row, first square (from left) - representing Washington, UW's all-time winningest football coach the Dawgfather Don James.

top row, second square - representing Washington State, the Cougars greatest export to the NFL, former All-American and multi-time Pro Bowler Drew Bledsoe.

Top row, third square - representing Oregon, Phil Knight the founder and CEO of Nike whose millions in donations have helped turn Oregon's athletic department into a national powerhouse across multiple sports.

Top row, fourth square - representing Oregon State, Mike Riley the heart and soul of Beaver football. The one man who left Corvallis and came back and perhaps the only guy on earth who would turn down USC, the best college heading coaching gig in America, twice.

Middle row, first square - representing Cal, Aaron Rodgers who is the best QB working in the NFL today and the face of professional football in the post Brady/Manning era. he is without a doubt the finest player the Bears have ever produced.

Middle row, second square - representing Stanford, John Elway the greatest QB of the mid 80's to early 90's generation and a man whose number will be retired at Stanford this season.

Middle row, third square - representing USC, Reggie Bush who brought shame to the university and forced the vacation of many wins and the stripping of his Heisman trophy (all of it totally unfair and a function of the NCAA ineptitude and dumbfounding rulebook). The NCAA may want you to forget him but you shouldn't because Bush did things on the field in college that were never seen before and haven't been seen since. Bush was the single most defining player of the past decade in college football.

Middle row, fourth square - representing UCLA, John Wooden the greatest coach of all-time in any sport. His principles, the pyramid of success, the care he put into molding and shaping young boys into strong leaders, and his coaching acumen on the court were unmatched. the world was a better place when Wooden was alive and we all could use some of his teaching.

Bottom row, first square - representing Arizona, Lute Olson the Hall of Fame head basketball coach who led Arizona to 589 wins over 25 years and the 1997 National Championship. If there's a more legendary figure in Arizona athletics I would like to see him.

Bottom row, second square - representing Arizona State, Pat Tillman a true American hero who gave up professional football and a $3.6 million contract to enlist in the US Army following the 9/11 terror attacks. Tillman was tragically killed in Afghanistan in a friendly fire incident in 2004 but even nine years later, the Sun Devils still wear memorial patches honoring Tillman on their jerseys.

Bottom row, third square - representing Colorado, Ralphie the Buffalo the greatest mascot there has ever been and will ever be. Few if any college traditions anywhere in America can rival Colorado's tradition of having Ralphie lead the team out of the tunnel at picturesque Folsom field.

Bottom row, fourth square - representing Utah, Brian Johnson the quarterback of the legendary 2008 Utes team that went undefeated and upset powerhouse Alabama in the Sugar Bowl. He joined the Utes as a coach at age 23 and became the offensive coordinator shortly before his 25th birthday, a job title he still holds today. Without a doubt, Johnson is the true face of Utah football.

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