As Oregon fans we (or at least those of us old enough to remember the Suffering) have lived through our share of bad football; we continue to do so to this day, although the OMG LOL WTF games are, blessedly, played out on gridirons in other locations from Corvallis to Colorado. And it seems every year we have the good misfortune to be exposed to a conference team that prompts the question "Why exactly am I watching this, anyway? Aren't there Breaking Bad reruns on somewhere?"
But did you ever wonder which team was Crappiest of the Crap? I know I did, because I have no life. And, shamelessly stealing the concept from B1G TEN sbnation blog Off Tackle Empire and MNWildcat, I decided to find out.
This wouldn't be possible without the cooperation of WhatIfSports, who generously have a game simulator available. Unfortunately, the sim only goes back to 1996, so we are spared reminders of earlier seasons of futility (like the 1979 bavers, the 1980 bavers, the 1981 bavers...). Hence the asterisk after "Of All Time." However, the fact that the data covers 16 seasons makes it trivial to create and seed a bracket of 16 highly unworthy teams, using a criteria of One Team Per Year, and Worst Conference Record.
- One game each matchup, played at Autzen Stadium in 70 degree sunshine. No best-of, no average-of-100-meetings, just straight up. Mano a mano! Or whatever.
- Winners go home. The *loser* of the matchup advances.
The candidates for the bracket: (excuse the formatting)
1996 OSU 2-9 / 1-7 (Jerry Pettibone)
1997 OSU 0-8 / 3-8 (Mike Riley)
1998 WSU 0-8 / 3-8 (Mike Price)
1999 WSU 1-7 / 3-9 (Mike Price)
2000 Cal 2-6 / 3-9 (Tom Holmoe); WSU 2-6 / 4-7 (Mike Price); USC 2-6 / 5-7 * (Paul Hackett)
2001 Cal 0-8 / 1-10 (Tom Holmoe)
2002 Stan 1-7 / 2-9 (Buddy Teevens); Ariz 1-7 / 4-8 * (John Mackovic)
2003 Ariz 1-7 / 2-10 (Mackovic / Hankwitz)
2004 Wash 0-8 / 1-10 (Keith Gilbertson)
2005 Wash 1-7 / 2-10 * (Tyrone Willingham); WSU 1-7 / 4-7 (Bill Doba)
2006 Stan 1-8 / 1-11 (Walt Harris)
2007 Wash 2-7 / 4-9 (Tyrone Willingham)
2008 Wash 0-9 / 0-12 (Tyrone Willingham)
2009 WSU 0-9 / 1-11 (Paul Wulff)
2010 WSU 1-8 / 2-10 (Paul Wulff)
2011 Colo 2-7 / 3-10 * (Jon Embree); WSU 2-7 / 4-8 (Paul Wulff); Ariz 2-7 / 4-8 (Mike Stoops)
Tiebreakers (conference record, HTH vs others with same record, then OOC):
In 2000, USC lost to both Cal and WSU. In 2002, Mackovic's Marauders lost to Stanford; 2005, Wazzu won one of the greatest Apple Cups in history; and last year Colorado locked down the cellar by virtue of an inferior OOC record.
What a collection of coaching talent. From Jerry Pettibone to John Mackovic to Tyrone Willingham to Paul Wulff, these teams set a high standard of low standards.
The playoffs will commence in a few days and play out as often as I can get around to posting them between now and the opening of football season.
Meanwhile, make your prediction on the Pac's WOAT in the comments, and vote in the poll!