Washington Football: ranking the best performances of 2017

  • Ivan Carter
  • Diehards
3:16 p.m Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017 Sports

Washington’s regular season featured a number of spectacular efforts.

Let’s rank the top 5:

5.  Offensive line dominates the Bruins 

The Huskies racked up 333 total rushing yards while utterly dominating the UCLA front seven in a 44-23 win in Seattle. Myles Gaskin (169 yards and a touchdown) and Lavon Coleman (94 yards, three touchdowns) did most of the damage but it was the performance of the big fellas up front that made it possible.

On several plays, Huskie runners weren’t touched until several yards downfield. Quarterback Jake Browning only had to attempt 11 passes all day.

“They ran power. They ran inside zone, outside zone. They just committed to the run,” UCLA Coach Jim Mora said. “We made some really good plays and we missed tackles. That was the problem. Guys were fit up, we missed tackles.”

4. Defense hounds Falk in Apple Cup win

Washington State quarterback Luke Falk has etched his name all over the Pac-12 record books but he will not have fond memories of his final game against his team’s biggest rival. In Washington’s 41-14 win, the Huskie defense intercepted Falk three times, sacked him five times and generally made life miserable for the Cougs’ high-powered offense.

“We wanted to put our foot on their neck from when the game started and keep it rolling through the game,” Washington safety Ezekiel Turner said.

Turner, JoJo McIntosh and Ben Burr Kirven got the interceptions while Washington’s fierce pass rush never allowed Falk to feel comfortable. Most of his 369 passing yards came late in the second half with the game’s outcome long decided.

wasn't this supposed to be the year that the "messiah" won an Apple Cup? pic.twitter.com/SmLKbOVTMV

— DayssinceWSUbeatUW (@dayzsnceWSUbtUW) November 29, 2017

Defensive tackle Vita Vea was particularly dominant up front.

Vita Vea was dominant against Washington State in the #AppleCup on Saturday. pic.twitter.com/g8psegJIBL

— PFF College Football (@PFF_College) November 27, 2017

The performance continued a trend Washington fans are thrilled about when it comes to facing that other school in the state.

A Tuesday reminder: UW has outscored WSU 162-54 since Chris Petersen's arrival at Montlake. That is all. #AppleCup

— Chris Fetters (@Chris_Fetters) November 28, 2017

3. Browning torches Utah

Quarterback Jake Browning had a more impressive statistical line in an early season win over Fresno State but given the level of competition, he’s best all-around performance came in a 33-30 win over Utah.

Browning completed 26 of 35 passes for 354 yards and a two touchdowns while posting a quarterback rating of 178.1.  Browning led the Huskies back from a seven point deficit late in the game.  Washington scored 10 points in the game’s final 58 seconds.

Also worth noting: Browning is getting it done in the classroom as well.

Jake Browning among 9 Huskies named to Pac-12 All-Academic teams https://t.co/Ly5tFRp5rQ #GoHuskies pic.twitter.com/xnE8TCtUcN

— Washington DieHards (@UDubDieHards) November 30, 2017

2. Pettis downs the Ducks

There are few things more enjoyable for a college football player than having a big day against a rival and that’s what senior wide receiver/punt returner Dante Pettis experienced in Washington’s 38-3 win over Oregon in Seattle.

Pettis became the NCAA’s all-time leader in punt return touchdowns with a spectacular 64-yard return for six and scored on a 47-yard reception in a performance that cemented his status as one of the most entertaining players to ever don the purple and gold.

“If he makes the first guy miss, it’s usually a touchdown,” Washington quarterback Jake Browning said.

UW's Dante Pettis named to @SInow All-America first team: https://t.co/Rm4t4Kyche

— Adam Jude (@A_Jude) December 7, 2017

1. Gaskin crushes the Cougars

Running back Myles Gaskin has been special all season and he was at his best in the 41-14 Apple Cup win over Washington State.  Gaskin rushed for 192 yards on 22 carries and scored four touchdowns on the to help squash Washington State’s hopes for a share of the Pac-12 North title.

Gaskin was at his best after initial contact which is a major reason why he’ll down in history as one of the best Huskie running backs ever.

Myles Gaskin was a beast last night in the #AppleCup against Washington State. pic.twitter.com/GHlUK0ZdB7

— PFF College Football (@PFF_College) November 26, 2017

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