The fallout from the Washington football team’s upset loss at California continued into Sunday as the Huskies were dropped from the Associated Press national rankings for the first time since 2015—Chris Petersen’s first season as coach in Montlake.
The Huskies (6-3 overall, 4-2 Pac-12), tumbled from 15th to next-up outside the Top 25 following their numbing 12-10 defeat to the Golden Bears (5-3, 2-3). The UW received 120 votes, 12 behind Texas A&M, the last team to make it in the poll.
Setting off a series of uncomfortable college football dominoes, four-year starting quarterback and senior Jake Browning was yanked from the field in the third quarter after the UW offense bogged down, back-up and redshirt freshman QB Jake Haener threw a pick-six in the third quarter that put Cal ahead for good and the Huskies disappeared from the AP poll after being ranked for 35 consecutive weeks.
It was a harsh reality check for a Petersen program ranked 6th to begin the season and given serious national championship consideration as he welcomed back a veteran team. However, a spate of injuries to starters—seven as of Saturday—and equal number of underperforming veterans have led to this sudden falloff.
With the Huskies’ exit from the poll, the Pac-12 claimed just two ranked teams—Washington State at No. 10 and Utah at No. 16.
The UW still has three games left, against Stanford, Oregon State and WSU, to try and return to the national rankings.