Notebook: Leafs enjoy family reunion
Big brother liked how little brother played — even if it was for a different team. Sharing quarterback duties with Dennis Dixon, Brady...
Seattle Times staff reporter
PULLMAN — Big brother liked how little brother played — even if it was for a different team.
Sharing quarterback duties with Dennis Dixon, Brady Leaf completed 12 of 17 passes for 99 yards and one touchdown and an interception in Oregon's 34-31 win over Washington State on Saturday night.
The crowd included his big brother, Ryan, who guided the Cougars to the Pac-10 championship in 1997 and a Rose Bowl berth.
"He told me congratulations and that he was proud of me," Brady said after the game. "He said that I played well."
Brady said it was "great" to win in Martin Stadium.
"I've come to a lot of games here and dreamed about playing in this stadium since I was a little kid," he said.
After a flop of an NFL career, Ryan Leaf returned to WSU last spring and completed his degree. He told a friend in the WSU athletic department that his mother has put the framed degree on a wall of the family home in Montana.
Oregon returns to Pullman again in '06
Oregon has played in Pullman five of the six times the teams have met this century, and the Ducks are scheduled to return to the Palouse again next year.
In 1989, the Pac-10 decided to adopt a standardized schedule for conference games — four games at home, four on the road with one league opponent skipped each year but never the school's rivalry game (WSU-Washington). It didn't take long for schools to start complaining when some good and profitable rivalries — such as Oregon versus Washington — weren't on the schedule. The four California schools also always made it clear that they wanted to play each other every year.
So, the schedule was adjusted, but the four-at-home, four-on-the-road mandate for Pac-10 games remained in effect.
The oddities start to diminish next year, because college football is going to a 12-game schedule and every school in the Pac-10 will have nine conference games instead of eight.
• Linebacker Will Derting played 12 plays in the first half and didn't play in the second half. However, all indications are that he will be available for the Apple Cup. Derting started against Oregon and had two tackles, including one on third down that forced the Ducks to punt. It was Derting's first game since he was injured Oct. 1 against Oregon State.
Freshman Greg Trent, who played middle linebacker when Derting wasn't in the game, had a career-high 13 tackles (seven solo).
• Mkristo Bruce had two-first quarter sacks on the same Oregon three-and-out possession in the first quarter. He has 10 sacks for the season and is sixth all time at WSU with 18 ½.
• The game was the last one at home for 21 seniors on the roster: Brandon Asuega-Stark, Kyle Basler, Troy Bienemann, Adam Braidwood, Carlton Coard, Cory Conklin, Omowale Dada, Will Derting, Riley Fitt-Chappell, Jerome Harrison, Trandon Harvey, Norvell Holmes, Marty Martin, Mark Matthey, Nick Mihlhauser, Bryan Olson, Tom Ostrander (injured all season), Greg Prator, Graham Siderius, Alex Teems and Adam West.
• The Space Needle flew the Washington State flag again Saturday. Reason: For the eighth day in 10, Cougars fans raised more money than Huskies fans for hurricane relief.
A total of $9,085 was raised for Habitat for Humanity's program to replace hurricane-damaged homes, raising the total to $106,497. No breakdown of donations by each set of fans will be announced until the contest ends Tuesday morning.
Fans can donate online at www.spaceneedle.com, drop off a donation at the Space Needle's restaurant check-in at the base of the Needle or by calling the toll-free number 1-800-270-1480.
• During a break in the game, the creation of a scholarship was announced in the memory of a former WSU student trainer, Damien Ficek, a former Army Ranger who was killed in Iraq on Dec. 30, 2004, while serving in the Washington National Guard. Damien's widow, Kyla, was at the game. A check for $12,000 was presented to get the scholarship for athletic-training students started.
Donations are sought to reach the goal of $25,000. Further information is available through the WSU Athletic Foundation, 509-335-0338. Ficek was from Beaverton, Ore.
Sam and Sara Lucchese create handmade pasta out of their kitchen-garage adjacent to their Ballard home. Here, they illustrate the final steps in making pappardelle pasta.