Husky Stadium timeline
May 7, 1920: The Puget Sound Bridge and Dredging Co. signs a contract with the University of Washington to build a football stadium, to...
Seattle Times deputy sports editor
Old Husky Stadium has seen its final game before a $250 million renovation begins, ending a 91-year era that made the jewel on Lake Washington part of the fabric of Seattle and the Pacific Northwest. See full coverage
Memories: What Husky Stadium means
Timeline: From May 7, 1920 to Nov. 2010
Then & Now
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May 7, 1920: The Puget Sound Bridge and Dredging Co. signs a contract with the University of Washington to build a football stadium, to be finished by Nov. 27 for the game against Dartmouth. A student fund drive, with plaques sold for $50 and $100, raised money to get the project started.
Nov. 5, 1920: The Washington Sun Dodgers play their final game at Denny Field, losing to Stanford, 3-0.
Nov. 27, 1920: UW plays its first football game at the 30,000-seat stadium that was finished 12 hours before kickoff at a cost of about $600,000. The name-the-stadium contest committee had considered Washington Cascadium, Crater, Magnet and Cirque before settling on Washington Field. Bob Abel, the UW quarterback and student-body president (talk about a Big Man on Campus!) scores the first touchdown on a 63-yard return of a blocked field-goal attempt but the Sun Dodgers lose to Dartmouth, 28-7.
December 1921: Nickname is changed from Sun Dodgers to Vikings. Until the students returned from their holiday break and got rid of it, that is. In 1922, Huskies and Malamutes were considered as the replacement, and we all know how that turned out. As a concession to the defeated Malamute backers, an Alaskan Malamute named Frosty I was chosen as the first mascot.
May 13, 1922: The first Washington vs. Washington State dual track meet is held, on the stadium's four-lane cinder track.
July 27, 1923: Warren G. Harding, who had just become the first president to visit Alaska, makes his final speech in front of a crowd of 25,000. He died of a heart attack six days later in San Francisco. The stadium often hosted speeches, Fourth of July concerts, dances and other special events during the early years.
Nov. 7, 1925: Huskies star George Wilson leads UW to a 13-0 victory over Stanford and Hall of Famer Ernie Nevers. In a slightly less competitive game, the Huskies had opened the season at home that year with a 108-0 victory over Willamette. The Huskies were 10-0-1 during the regular season, tying Nebraska, before losing to Alabama, 20-19, in the Rose Bowl. One of the Huskies' stars was Herman Brix, a tackle from Tacoma, who won a silver medal in the shot put at the 1928 Olympics, then appeared as Tarzan in movies.
Sept. 13, 1927: Charles Lindbergh, who had made the first solo, nonstop crossing of the Atlantic four months earlier, buzzes over the stadium in his Spirit of St. Louis, lands at the Sand Point Naval Air Station, then speaks to more than 25,000 at the stadium.
Nov. 26, 1936: Huskies beat Washington State 40-0 in the first meeting between the teams in which a conference title was at stake.
1937: The first stadium expansion increases seating capacity to 40,000.
1938: The playing field, which had been dirt, is sodded with grass.
1950: The south upper deck is added, at a cost of $1.7 million, increasing capacity to 55,000.
Sept. 23, 1950: In the season opener, UW beats Kansas State 33-7 but only 30,245 attend, with some fans saying they are afraid the upper deck will collapse. Hugh McElhenny ran for 177 yards, including a 91-yard TD. It was also the first Band Day, featuring high-school marching bands from around the state.
June 15-16, 1951: USC wins the NCAA track-and-field championships at Husky Stadium. Washington's top finisher is George Widenfeldt, who tied for second in the high jump, clearing 6-6.
Aug. 20, 1955: In an NFL exhibition game, former Huskies quarterback Don Heinrich leads the New York Giants to a 28-17 victory over San Francisco. McElhenny, the former UW star who played for the 49ers, was injured and watched the game in street clothes from the sideline.
Nov. 19, 1955: Washington's Credell Green runs for 258 yards — still a Husky Stadium record — in a 27-7 Apple Cup victory.
Nov. 21, 1959: The Jim Owens-coached Huskies beat the Cougars 20-0 in the Apple Cup, completing a 9-1 regular season. The Huskies then routed Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl.
Oct. 29, 1960: The Huskies beat Oregon, 7-6, when Bob Hivner connects with Don McKeta on a short pass on a fourth-and-six play from midfield that went for a touchdown. Hivner's third interception sealed the victory. The Huskies were on their way to a 9-1 regular season followed by another Rose Bowl victory, this one over top-ranked Minnesota.
Oct. 27, 1962: The Huskies were tied with Oregon at 21 when Ducks quarterback Bob Berry lofts a Hail Mary into the end zone. Dozens of kids leave their bleacher seats and run onto the field, disrupting the play. Officials ruled the play would stand and the game ended in a tie.
Aug. 17, 1963: The Kansas City Chiefs beat the Oakland Raiders, 35-21 in an AFL exhibition game.
1965: Plans to add 20,000 seats are scrapped when the lowest construction bid comes in nearly $2 million more than the estimated cost of $3.6 million.
Oct. 21, 1967: USC, the first No. 1-ranked team to play at the stadium since the AP poll began in 1936, beats the Huskies 23-6.
1968: The stadium is expanded from 55,000 to more than 59,000 when 3,000 seats are added to the north rim and portable bleachers are placed behind the east end zone. The Huskies also install AstroTurf and an all-weather track. At the time, only the Astrodome and the stadiums at Indiana State and Tennessee had artificial turf. The Huskies stocked more than 200 pairs of shoes for opponents to use. The surface was replaced in 1972, 1977, 1987, 1995, 2000 (FieldTurf, paid for by Seahawks) and in 2009.
Oct. 26, 1968: Al Worley intercepts four passes in a 37-7 win over Idaho. Worley intercepted 14 during the season.
June 17-19, 1971: Washington junior Cary Feldmann wins the javelin at the NCAA track-and-field championships. Oregon superstar Steve Prefontaine wins the three-mile easily, then criticizes the condition of the track, adding, "I got out of this nothing more than just a good, hard workout. The victory rates way down on the list in my book."
Sept. 18, 1971: Sonny Sixkiller leads the Huskies to a 38-35 victory over Purdue and its stars Gary Danielson and Darryl Stingley. The winning score was a late TD pass from Sixkiller to Tom Scott. Sixkiller led the Huskies to a 22-10 record from 1970-72, after a 1-9 mark in 1969.
1972: America's best track-and-field athletes warmed up for the Olympics at the AAU track-and-field championships.
Aug. 12, 1972: A group (including Hugh McElhenny) trying to bring pro football to Seattle promotes an NFL exhibition game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and New York Jets, matching future Hall-of-Fame quarterbacks Terry Bradshaw and Joe Namath. McElhenny's group, which would have called the team the Kings, was later aced out by the Nordstrom-backed contingent that eventually landed the Seahawks.
Nov. 4, 1972: Washington State plays top-ranked USC at Husky Stadium, losing 44-3. The Cougars tried again a couple years later, losing to No. 1 Ohio State and Archie Griffin, 42-7.
Oct. 26, 1974: The Huskies were 5-6 in Jim Owens' final season but their 66-0 victory over Oregon must have felt good. A year earlier, almost to the day, the Ducks beat up the Huskies, 58-0, in Eugene.
1975: UW media guide refers to the stadium as "Husky Stadium" for the first time. Until then, it had been called University of Washington Stadium.
Nov. 22, 1975: Washington State led the Huskies 27-14 with 3:01 to play when the Cougars pass up a field-goal try on fourth and one. Al Burleson intercepts a pass and returns it 93 yards for a touchdown, then Warren Moon hits Spider Gaines on a 78-yard TD pass for a wild 28-27 win.
Nov. 12, 1977: The Huskies score a 28-10 win over USC on the way to their first Rose Bowl under coach Don James.
May 13, 1978: Washington State's Henry Rono sets the world record in the 3,000-meter steeplechase.
Oct. 31, 1981: The Wave wasn't invented at Husky Stadium but might have been popularized there during the Huskies' 42-31 victory over Stanford.
Nov. 21, 1981: No. 17 Huskies beat No. 14 Cougars, 23-10, to earn a trip to the Rose Bowl.
Nov. 13, 1982: Delirious UW fans tear down the goal posts after a 17-13 victory over Arizona State — in a game played in Tempe. Fans watched the victory on closed-circuit TV at Husky Stadium and celebrated a win they thought wrapped up a second straight spot in the Rose Bowl. A week later, Washington State ruined those plans with an upset of the Huskies in Pullman.
Sept. 17, 1983: Steve Pelluer leads Huskies to 25-24 victory over Michigan with a touchdown pass and two-point conversion with 34 seconds to play.
Feb. 25, 1987 (10:09 a.m.): A portion of the new north upper deck was under construction when it collapsed. No one was hurt and workers started over, finishing the job just in time for the 1987 home opener. The expansion added 13,700 seats, bringing the capacity to 72,500 and also featured the glass-enclosed reception area, known now as the Don James Center.
Sept. 5, 1987: A crowd of 73,676 watches the Huskies beat Stanford, 31-21.
1989: West stands are replaced, at a cost of $3.7 million.
1990: Wooden bleachers in the north upper deck are replaced with aluminum seating. The same process was repeated for the south upper deck in 1992.
July 21, 1990: Former President Ronald Reagan opens Ted Turner's Goodwill Games with a short speech to a packed stadium on a sweltering evening. Husky Stadium was the site of the opening and closing ceremonies as well as the track-and-field competition, where 33 stadium records were set.
Sept. 22, 1990: "All I saw was purple," USC quarterback Todd Marinovich says after the Huskies swarm fifth-ranked USC, 31-0, on a day the UW celebrated 100 years of football.
Nov. 23, 1991: Huskies cruise to a 56-21 victory over Washington State, wrapping up an 11-0 regular season. After beating Michigan easily in the Rose Bowl, the Huskies shared the national title with Miami.
Sept. 19, 1992: The Huskies beat Nebraska 29-14 in a rare night game. ESPN sideline crews measure the crowd noise at 130 decibels (pain begins at 125), highest ever for a college-football game.
1994: The Seahawks play two exhibition games and three regular-season games at Husky Stadium because the Kingdome was being repaired after tiles fell from the ceiling.
Sept. 10, 1994: Napoleon Kaufman becomes the Huskies' all-time leading rusher in UW's 25-16 victory over No. 16 Ohio State.
Nov. 16, 1996: Washington star Corey Dillon runs for 222 yards in the first quarter during a rout of San Jose State. Dillon, and many of the other UW starters, watched the last three quarters from the bench.
Oct. 19, 1996: Dillon scores five touchdowns in 41-21 win over UCLA.
Oct. 30, 1999: Marques Tuiasosopo passes for 302 yards and runs for 207 in a 35-30 victory over Stanford.
2000-01: Seahawks play two seasons at Husky Stadium while Seahawks Stadium (later Qwest Field, now CenturyLink Field) is being built.
Sept. 9, 2000: Coach Rick Neuheisel's Huskies beat Miami 34-29, one of seven victories by a touchdown or less in a 10-1 regular season. The Huskies finished No. 3 in the final poll after beating Purdue in the Rose Bowl.
Oct. 7, 2000: Huskies hold off Oregon State, 33-30, in a game that was early in the season, but proved to be for the Pac-10 title.
Nov. 4, 2000: Curtis Williams is honored during the Huskies' victory over Arizona, a week after he suffered a spinal-cord injury at Stanford that left him paralyzed. Williams died 18 months later.
Sept. 8, 2001: Huskies open the season with a gritty 23-18 victory over No. 11 Michigan.
Oct. 20, 2001: Cody Pickett throws for a school-record 455 yards in a 31-28 win over Arizona. Pickett finished his career with seven of the top nine passing yardage games in UW history.
Nov. 22, 2003: Huskies knock off No. 8 Washington State, 27-19, finishing Keith Gilbertson's first season as head coach with a 6-6 record.
Sept. 8, 2007: Jake Locker leads UW to a 24-10 victory over No. 22 Boise State in his first game at Husky Stadium. Locker passes for 193 yards and a touchdown and runs for 84 and another score.
September 2008: "Go Huskies" and the "W" logo are painted on the north and south decks.
Sept. 19, 2009: The Huskies, coming off an 0-12 season, stun No. 3-ranked USC, 16-13, when Erik Folk makes a field goal with three seconds to play. Steve Sarkisian, in his first season with the Huskies, beats his former boss, Pete Carroll, who is in his final year with the Trojans before taking over as head coach of the Seattle Seahawks.
Nov. 18, 2010: Locker, who didn't play in the Huskies' previous game at Oregon because of a broken rib, is back in the lineup for his final game at Husky Stadium. The Huskies beat UCLA 24-7, the first of three straight wins that earn a trip to the Holiday Bowl, where they upset Nebraska.