Washington’s 70-21 victory over Oregon last week was the program’s first over their Pacific Northwest rivals in a dozen years.
Naturally that kind of big win set off plenty of celebrations among the Huskies but none seems to have been as costly as the one quarterback Jake Browning suffered the following week in practice. The normally reserved signal-caller was the first Washington player to reach the end zone against the Ducks and broke out of his comfort zone a bit by channeling his inner Dikembe Mutombo and wagging his finger at a nearby linebacker to draw a 15 yard unsportsmanlike conduct foul.
While that was about the only negative for the offense on a day where they did just about everything they wanted to Oregon’s defense, it turns out that was a costly penalty for Browning personally. According to the Seattle Times, the quarterback was hit with a 500 push-up punishment from head coach Chris Petersen as a result of the 15 yard penalty.
While that is standard operating procedure for players who draw the foul under Petersen, it is a rare one for a quarterback to get hit with. Perhaps as a sign of respect for the sophomore who is entering the Heisman Trophy conversation, several of his UW teammates offered to serve some of the punishment in his place.
“Everybody raised their hand and told him we’d do something with him. So that’s how everyone felt about it,” cornerback Kevin King told the Times. “We stand behind Jake. When we have a quarterback like that, he’s just a fighter. Things like that, he’s not a cocky guy — we all know his character. He just got caught up in the moment. For us, that’s exciting to see.”
Probably not quite as exciting to see as the final scoreboard at Autzen Stadium was after a 49 point win but it was certainly a tone-setting type play for the Huskies that was probably still worth it despite all those pushups later on.