For the first time in nearly a decade, Washington fans had little tension at all going into the final Sunday of the year as to which bowl game the Huskies would go to. With the UW’s 10-3 win over No. 17 Utah in the Pac-12 championship game this past Friday and no legitimate shot at the College Football Playoff, the Dawgs knew they were going to the Granddaddy of Them All.
It will be Washington’s 15th appearance in the Rose Bowl, tied for third-most by any school and second-most in the Pac-12. It’s the Huskies’ first since the 2000 season, when the Dawgs beat Purdue 34-24. The Huskies are an even 7-7 in Rose Bowls.
So one of the end zones at the Rose Bowl will be painted purple come Jan. 1. That much we knew.
The only undetermined factor after Friday night would be who the Dawgs would play. No. 5 Ohio State took care of business over No. 21 Northwestern in the Big Ten championship game, but there was some discussion that the Buckeyes could have done enough to give themselves a shot at the Playoff, paving the way for No. 7 Michigan to go to Pasadena.
But when the final four was announced Sunday morning as Alabama, Clemson, Notre Dame, and Oklahoma, the stage was cleared and set for a UW/OSU showdown on New Years’ Day. Ohio State will also be making its 15th appearance in the Rose Bowl.
Oddly enough, this will be the first time the Huskies and Buckeyes have ever faced off in a Rose Bowl. Ohio State holds a 3-8 advantage in the all-time series with the last game being played in Seattle in 2007.
Reach Sports Editor Josh Kirshenbaum at email@example.com. Twitter: @J_Kirshenbaum
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