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Huskies in the NBA

Brandon Roy

The NBA tipped off earlier this week, and more than a half a dozen former Huskies are suiting up this season. How are your favorite UW players doing early on?

Quincy Pondexter (’10)

The guard is beginning his third season in the NBA and his second with the Memphis Grizzlies. Pondexter had two steals, three assists and one turnover on Wednesday, but the Grizzlies lost to the L.A. Clippers, 101-92.

Nate Robinson

The energetic point guard, now in his eighth season in the NBA, signed with the Chicago Bulls this off-season. He scored seven points in his Chicago debut, to go along with five rebounds, one assist and three turnovers. The Bulls defeated the Sacramento Kings 93-87 on Wednesday.

Isaiah Thomas (’12)

The 5’9” point guard, drafted in 2011 by the Sacramento Kings, surprised pundits and fans alike when he earned a starting role last season. He had a strong rookie campaign but struggled in his season-opener against Chicago on Wednesday, notching 10 points, one assist and three turnovers in a 93-87 loss.

Spencer Hawes

The sixth-year center, fresh from re-signing with the Philadelphia 76ers this off-season, keyed an opening-night 84-75 victory over the Denver Nuggets on Wednesday. The smooth-shooting Hawes finished with 16 points, 12 rebounds, two assists, three steals, five blocks and three turnovers in the win.

Terrence Ross

The rookie shooting guard, taken eighth overall in the 2012 NBA Draft by the Toronto Raptors, finished with no points and one rebound in his debut on Wednesday. Ross played 6:24 of a 90-88 loss to the Indiana Pacers.

Tony Wroten

Wroten, along with Terrence Ross, led the UW to the best record in the Pac-12 last season. He declared for the NBA draft and was taken 25th overall by the Memphis Grizzlies, who lost to the Clippers, 101-92, on Wednesday. Wroten didn’t play.

Will Conroy (’05) and Brandon Roy

The former UW teammates are reunited this season on the Minnesota Timberwolves. Minnesota has yet to play so far but will kick off its season Friday against the Sacramento Kings.

Roy will return to the NBA after a season away. The former Portland Trail Blazer retired after the 2011 season because of a degenerative condition in his knees, but he signed with Minnesota this off-season. Conroy, meanwhile, played sparingly with the Clippers and Grizzlies in 2006-2007, and the Houston Rockets in 2009-2010.

Which Huskies are you keeping an eye on as the season gets underway? Let us know in the comments!

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Brandon Roy, Nate Robinson meet with Husky fans

Brandon Roy and Nate Robinson - UW HuskiesBrandon Roy and Nate Robinson are Husky basketball legends. Both spoke to UW alumni and fans at an exclusive post-game Q&A following the Portland Trail Blazers-Oklahoma City Thunder game April 1 at the Rose Garden.

It was all part of the UW Alumni Association’s fifth annual Husky Night with the Trail Blazers. Brandon Roy, an All-Star for the Blazers, has been our star here since he was drafted by Portland in 2006. Nate Robinson, the only player in NBA history to win three Slam Dunk contests, just so happened to be in town with the Thunder.

And, yes, since the game was against the Thunder (who used to be the Seattle SuperSonics – grrrr!), many loyal Sonics fans showed up wearing their green and gold.

Two Husky legends in an intimate setting—this is what the UWAA is all about!

More than 100 people came out for the event, which began with a Husky Happy Hour in downtown Portland. We raffled off a few great prizes, including a Brandon Roy autographed jersey and a picture with Brandon after the game. The Blazers rallied for a 98–91 victory after being down 11 points at halftime.

The Q&A following the game was a lot of fun. Everyone was pleasantly surprised when Brandon was joined by Nate Robinson, who was recently traded to the Thunder. Together, they answered questions like:  “What did you think of Isaiah Thomas going to the NBA?” and, “What was your favorite memory as a Husky?”

As always, it was a very exciting and fun-filled evening. Go Huskies!

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One in 3 million: UW alum Diana Inch is the only entrant to correctly pick the Final Four

UW alum Diana Rich correctly picks Final FourBe honest, how many of your teams actually made it to the Final Four this year? Not many, if you’re like most of America. In fact, 80 percent of brackets filled out on the Yahoo! Tourney Pick ‘Em game failed to pick a single Final Four team. Not a single one!

Diana Inch had them all. The UW alum and high school librarian is the only participant out of rougly 3 million in the Yahoo! universe to correctly pick the Final Four: Connecticut, Kentucky, Butler and Virginia Commonwealth. She has UConn vs. Butler in the NCAA title game, and believes the “other” Huskies will win the national championship.

Read a full-length interview with Diana from Yahoo! Sports. She says her favorite numbers are 7 and 11 and picked teams closest to that throughout the tournament. Butler is a No. 8 seed, while VCU was a No. 11 seed. She also picked winners based on mascots that were either dogs, cats or had four legs. UConn Huskies. Kentucky Wildcats. Butler Bulldogs. VCU Rams. “Any mascots we didn’t know, I looked up online,” Diana told Yahoo! Sports. “That’s what librarians do, we look things up!”

A 1996 graduate of the UW iSchool, Diana is a librarian and coaches girls soccer at Jefferson High School near Salem, Ore. Way to go, Diana!

Photo courtesy of AP.

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Isaiah Thomas leaving UW early for the NBA Draft

Isaiah Thomas leaving UW for NBA Draft

I’m sure you’ve heard the news by now, but Washington’s talented point guard Isaiah Thomas is putting his name into the 2011 NBA Draft. The junior from Tacoma is not hiring an agent right away, but he assured reporters at a 1 p.m. press conference that he is, indeed, gone for good.

From all of us at the UW Alumni Association—thank you, Isaiah, and good luck!

A local star from Curtis High School, Thomas stayed close to home and led the Huskies to their first outright Pac-10 title in 56 years as a freshman (pictured above). Last year, he helped Washington reach the Sweet 16, and this season he guided the Dawgs to their second-straight Pac-10 tournament title and a win over Georgia in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

This kid bleeds Washington, and we wish him the very best in the NBA.

For more on Isaiah Thomas:

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VIDEO: Watch Bob Rondeau’s home radio call of Isaiah Thomas’ buzzer-beater

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First things first, how about those Huskies?!

Washington’s dramatic 77-75 win over Arizona in the Pac-10 Tournament title game sent the UW to the Big Dance. Star point guard Isaiah Thomas drained a game-winner at the buzzer that instantly goes down as one of the biggest shots in Husky history. Listen to legendary play-by-play man Bob Rondeau make the call in the video above.

On Friday, March 18, the Huskies will tip off against Georgia in the NCAA Tournament’s East Regional. We’re a No. 7 seed. Georgia’s a No. 10 seed. Both schools go by the nickname “Dawgs” … it’s going to be a, well, you know what kind of fight it will be.

If you’re not in Seattle, visit our viewing party page to see if there’s a gathering in your area. There’s nothing better than watching Husky hoops with friends wearing purple and gold. Go Dawgs!

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A history of UW logos – Which is your favorite?

University of Washington logos

For Huskies, the University of Washington means many things. To the majority of people outside the UW community, the school is an image—a purple block W.  

When people look at the logo, no matter where they are, they don’t just see the logo. They see their personal experiences with the university, and their impressions are based on media and other sources. They see the UW’s reputation.  

With its logo, mascot and color scheme, the UW has always tried to represent the students, the school and the ideals held here. The brand’s evolution has taken some unusual twists and turns but has endlessly inspired students and alumni alike. Let’s open the history books and look back at nearly a century of UW logos.  

First, some interesting notes:  

  • Until 1919, the UW did not have a mascot and used only the block W. But as other schools adopted mascots across the nation, Columns reported, student leaders realized that Washington needed an icon.
  • The nickname “Sun Dodgers” was used until the UW switched to Huskies in 1922. Wanting to move away from Sun Dodgers, university officials decided to go with Vikings but students immediately protested and the school settled on Huskies a few months later.
  • It wasn’t until 1984 that the UW agreed it needed a clear identity and moved to adopt a consistent logo and color scheme. Before that, more than 550 licensees were authorized to use either the block W or Husky logos, and the result was a mishmash of UW imagery.

    University of Washington logo 1919

    Sunny Boy statue at Husky Hall of Fame.

Our story begins with a drawing in the Sept. 1919 issue of the on-campus magazine, Sun Dodger, in which a staff artist depicted a fictional UW student named “Sunny Boy,” a smiling freshman wearing a huge bow tie and carrying an umbrella (right). Despite the initial protests of magazine staff, the name “Sun Dodgers” stuck with the local press and Sunny Boy grew in popularity. Eventually, students commissioned a 3-foot-tall wooden statue in his likeness and carried it to the away football games. See the video from the Husky Hall of Fame.

An article in the Washington Alumnus, which later became Columns magazine, noted the Husky is “a symbol of willingness, courage, endurance, strength and fight.” After settling on the new name, university officials were most excited to use a live dog as an on-the-field mascot, and felt the name Huskies “suggests the idea that Washington is the most northern American university on the Pacific Coast.” A nod to our neighbors to the north, eh?

Read more…

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The Great Rose Bowl Hoax of 1961 – Fifty years later

Cal-Tech's Great Rose Bowl Hoax of 1961Fifty years ago, a group of pesky Cal-Tech students hijacked the University of Washington’s halftime “flip-card” stunt in a Rose Bowl prank for the ages.

The Los Angeles Times tells the story of Lyn Hardy, the ringleader behind one of the greatest college football stunts of all time. UW fans on one side of the stadium were given flip cards that were supposed to spell out “WASHINGTON” but instead read “CALTECH.” It’s a marvelous tale, and you can read the full story here.

Hardy, now 69, says he learned how the stunt worked from UW cheerleaders. Upon learning the Husky Marching Band and Cheer Squad were staying at Long Beach State dormitories, Hardy—a Cal-Tech junior at the time—posed as a reporter for the Dorsey High student newspaper and walked right in. When everyone left for dinner, Hardy and another of Cal-Tech’s legendary “Fiendish 14″ swiped a card-stunt instruction book and headed back to Pasadena, where they made some 2,400 copies.

Jack Briggs
, Washington’s 1961 student body president, said at the time that the prank was “not in the best of taste.” Fifty years later, though, it’s still a classic.

Of course, Washington beat top-ranked Minnesota that day 17-7.

Enjoy this week’s Dawg Treats:

  • UW alum Nick Handy is departing his post as Washington’s state elections director after leading widely praised reform efforts that have boosted voter turnout.
  • A study by UW researcher Daryl Haggard explores the future of the Milky Way’s central black hole.
  • UW students win $40,000 to help make water safe to drink.
  • Former UW President Mark Emmert, now the head of the NCAA, is profiled in this piece by the New York Times. The story focuses on overseeing integrity and the threat of income in college sports.

    Read more…

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Sark, Romar highlight new Husky sports event

For nearly 40 years, Husky coaches traveled across the state to meet with fans of all ages. This, of course, was known as Coaches Tour and it was a staple of the spring sports season. But a new generation of UW coaches has a new vision, and Tuesday, May 11 marked the beginning of an exciting new era.

Check out these great photos from the all-new Huskies Celebrating Huskies event at UW Tacoma, courtesy of our presenting sponsor, Air Van Moving. It was the first of four stops this spring!

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