As a long-suffering Seattle sports fan, I can say without hesitation or debate that 2008 was the worst year in history for Seattle sports.
Let’s look at the performance of the professional and collegiate teams that get the most interest in Seattle:
Seattle SuperSonics (NBA – basketball)
With a record of 20-62, the 2007-08 season was the worst in the franchise’s 41 year history. The Sonics hadn’t played well lately, only make the playoffs once in six years, but this drop-off in performance (11 games from the previous year) was staggering even by those lowered standards. Bad trades and a squabble about the owner moving the team probably contributed. They did have the rookie of the year, in Kevin Durant, foretelling hope in building the team back up, but this season was a complete failure.
Failure Indicator: 10 out of 10
Seattle Mariners (MLB – baseball)
With a record of 61-101, the 2008 season was the 4th worst in the team’s history. It marked the 4th time that they had lost 100 games in a season (a very dubious distinction), the last time being 1983 when the team was still young and terrible. In 2007 the Mariners were close to making the playoffs, but in 2008 they won 27 fewer games – an epic drop-off in baseball terms. There was high expectation to make the playoffs in 2008; in the other three 100 loss seasons, there were no expectations. That the manager quit in the middle of the season and that there was a glut of injuries did not help the situation.
Failure Indicator: 10/10
Seattle Seahawks (NFL – football)
Currently at 2-10, the Seahawks are in danger of one of their worst seasons ever. Even if they were to magically win the rest of their games (they play three playoff contending teams), 6-10 would still rank as a complete bust of a season. After five consecutive years of making the playoffs (no other NFC team has done that, not even the Giants) and a Super Bowl appearance, the Seahawks have fallen into the ranks of the worst teams this season. Naming a coach-in-waiting during Mike Holmgren’s last season is a complete crock and very likely contributed to the terrible season. Injuries to almost all wide receivers and losing Matt Hasselbeck for 5 games only added fuel to the fire of their craptasticness.
Failure Indicator: 10/10
University of Washington Huskies (College Football)
At 0-11, with one game left to play (and not winnable), the Huskies are in the nightmare state of complete and utter failure. No Huskies team in its 100 + year history has ever been this bad. Losing in double overtime to the supposedly worse Washington State Cougars only drives this point home. None of the other 119 BCS eligible schools are winless. No Pac-10 team has ever gone 0-12. Outscored 152-415, they didn’t just lose, they got destroyed by an average of 38-14. Tyrone Willingham, you’ve been served. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.
Failure Indicator: 12/10
University of Washington Huskies (College Basketball – Men’s and Women’s)
The men’s team went 16-17 (7-11 Pac-10) and missed the NCAA Tournament for the second straight year.
The women’s team went 13-18 (8-10 Pac-10), missed the NCAA Tournament and did nothing worth noting.
Failure Indicator: 7/10
As performance is not the only indicator, let’s look at some intangibles:
The Seattle SuperSonics are stolen from Seattle by greed and a declining and increasingly irrelevant league and re-located to Oklahoma City. The NBA is dead to me.
Worst. Year. Ever.