Black Lives Matter: A statement from Sean Kramer

Tubs at the Club is a website created and operated by white men. This isn’t by design, but it is the current makeup of our team. So, we may not always have the right thing to say on issues like these. But, we do have a responsibility to have these conversations. 

The recent unrest in our country has been troubling, eye-opening, and humbling to follow. The tragic killing of George Floyd is just one of the latest examples of the frustrating and unacceptable history of police violence in the United States. Protestors all around the United States are bringing up decades and centuries of frustration to the surface, and it’s our job as a community to listen. 

We want our communities to be safe for everybody, and we do not want violence. This starts with supporting the peaceful protests.

The black community is an invaluable part of the University of Idaho, including the athletics programs we support so fervently on this website. It doesn’t feel right to cheer for them on weekends if we are going to ignore their voices when they leave campus.

It’s not enough anymore to just proclaim to not be racist. We need to be active. We need to support the voices of those standing up to end systemic racism. We need to call out racism when we see it. We need to listen to black voices in our country asking for police accountability. 

Tubs at the Club is a platform for all in the University of Idaho community and this is a conversation we want to have. Please contact us if you would like to tell your story and give your thoughts on this issue.

Black Lives Matter.

– Sean Kramer

The Boise Junior College rivalry is still alive, and so is the hate

Boise Junior College is finally returning to the Kibbie Dome for a football game.

Erhm, fútbol.

You see, Boise Junior College Emperor Bob Kustra and his Galactic Senate members on the state board of education are too stubborn to do the right thing and renew the Governor’s Cup matchup of the gridiron, last played between the two teams in 2010 in Moscow.

But there’s still footie, the only sport in which Boise State will send its athletic programs up to the Nasty, Inebriated great north of Moscow since the two schools ceased being conference mates in 2011.

You see, this game will take place in the Kibbie Dome, and will be the first NCAA women’s soccer game ever played indoors. It marks the start of the Kibbie Dome era for the back-to-back Big Sky regular season champions, ending the Guy Wicks Field era during our 20th season with a – very accomplished – women’s soccer program.

Why should you care? Because Fuck Boise State, that’s why. It doesn’t matter which sport we play them in, it just matters that we win. And if you don’t think our exceptional female athletes hate BJC, think again.

Elexis Schlossarek is a former Vandal who spent five years on the Idaho soccer team.  The Canadian import has some pretty strong opinions of Idaho’s rival to the south.

I don’t really know too much about Boise State, I just knew to hate them.  That’s what was passed down to me.

When I first came to Idaho I had a pair of runners and they were blue and orange.  I wore them out one day and I got ripped on by everyone on campus telling me that I wasn’t allowed to wear them because they were Boise State colors.

I didn’t get that, I didn’t know why that mattered.

But they told me “we hate Boise State,” so I threw them out.

That’s how committed I was to hating Boise State.

Two years ago, when we played them and they beat us 1-0, they called themselves the Kings of Idaho.  That was a slap in the face to us, so we went down there last year with that incentive to basically say “fuck you.”  We went down there and beat them and basically shoved it in their face because they had been in our face about it for two full years.

It was so satisfying.

Watch out, Idaho’s here to kick your ass Boise.

And Boise isn’t a state.

In or around Moscow this weekend?  You won’t want to miss Idaho take on the BJC on Friday night in the Dome

The flagship University of Idaho women’s soccer team is currently 1-1 on the season.

Go Vandals.

University of Idaho alum recalls North Idaho’s ugly past with white supremacy

The events in Virginia this week seems to have shaken us all, spurred debate and for some revealed the ugly truth about the lingering nature of Neo-Nazi and white supremacist sentiment in our country today.

North Idaho has its own history with white supremacy, lasting decades and still having small semblances of an ugly legacy among residents in the area.

The Aryan Nations moved into Coeur d’Alene, Idaho — about 90 minutes north of the University of Idaho —  in the 1970s and remained a presence in the area for the better part of three decades. The Aryan Nations compound was dismantled in 2000.

University of Idaho alumnus and Coeur d’Alene-area native Bernie Wilson was with the Associated Press in the 1980s, and shared his thoughts and memories on white supremacy in the Northwest region.

Bernie has since moved on to being a sports reporter for the AP and was kind enough to allow me to share his story with you on my website.

I wasn’t prepared for any of this, and it was one of the best days of my life

Almost nothing about Thursday, December 22nd was even close to how I envisioned it. This realization came as I sprinted onto the disgusting blue turf, frantically looking for anybody and everybody to hug.

I planted my first foot into the turf and expected the tears to flow from the my eyes.

The tears never came.

Prior to the game, as Idaho players ran out onto the field from the tunnel I began reflecting on the fact this was actually happening. Idaho is in a bowl game? I felt the tears start to come then. I fought them back.

I spent four years covering Idaho football as a reporter, but it doesn’t mean the perpetual losing didn’t wear on me as an alumnus of this school. Now, as a full-fledged fan, I’m acutely aware of the recent history and what winning this game would actually mean.

I expected to cry. And when the time came, I couldn’t. I think know why.

Frantically running around the field as Vandal fans poured onto it, I tried finding as many players as I could. I wanted to thank all of them personally. Thank them for committing to this university, and thank them for making me immensely proud to be a part of this Vandal community.

Needless to say, it was freezing. I lined up down in front of the gate to get onto the field with over four minutes remaining in the game. I was standing in a puddle and my feet were wet. It was both uncomfortable and surreal.

The gates opened and we massed at the 50-yard line on top of the gross Bronco and started jumping up and down, hugging, screaming, celebrating. But, as I looked around at the players the vibe was different. Celebratory, yes. Hyped, yes. There were hugs, there was screaming into the 10-degree Boise night. Still, it just felt different.

There is a different feel and a different vibe when you’re in the midst of an upset. In a true upset even the players can’t believe what they just accomplished. The Vandals were different. The Vandals carried themselves like a team that’s been here before.

Clearly, they haven’t. But they expected this. Not only to win, but to completely dominate and beat the crap out of Colorado State. They expect to completely take Colorado State’s will. And when they looked at how we, the fans, mobbed onto the field to celebrate … it was perhaps then that some of the players realized what the perception of the team really was.

Maybe that played a part in our players mostly choosing to calmly meander down toward the trophy presentation. They literally had over half an hour to reflect on the fact they already won well before the clock hit triple zeroes.

We led 61-28 with just over seven minutes remaining. It was over then. Before that, reality started to set in with just over 18 minutes left when we held a 41-7 lead.

Matt Linehan said it himself. “Nobody believed in us,” the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl MVP proclaimed to ESPN upon accepting his award.

He was promptly interrupted when a few dozen of us corrected him. “WE DID!” we shouted.

He smiled. We did believe. We truly believed in this football team and this program. For some of us it has been hard. It’s not easy to support a football team that regularly wins one game in a season and has been a perpetual national embarrassment, especially as your rival is on the national stage.

To them it’s fair to question. How many of the fans there were like me, like Peter Gregg, like Marc Trivelpiece who could list off the names of players who graduated on those one-win teams? Granted, I covered the team and was obligated to come when the team went through 1-11, and 1-11, and then … one win again. But I was here before the season started, telling you this football team was unequivocally a bowl-quality program.

This, though? Nine wins? Completely pummeling Colorado State into the ground? I’ll be honest, I didn’t expect this. I expected to win, but not this.

The guys on the team expected every bit of this. This was the day at the office they’ve been preparing for since December of 2012 when Paul Petrino stood in the Litehouse Center, selling us on his mantra of “feed the studs” and stating he was going to win at Idaho.

Petrino made good on that promise.

The players certainly felt like few outside of the locker room realized how much work was put in during the course of the last four seasons leading up to this moment.

A roster full of players who didn’t have the slightest clue what a bowl week was like still treated it like a business trip. They went through their bowl activities, the bowling, the arcade games, the sledding and enjoyed it. Of course, they deserved it. Then they made one of the least respected programs in FBS into the talk of ESPN in the latter stages of bowl week by overcoming being two-touchdown dogs and lighting up the scoreboard with 61 points in three quarters.

A glance over to the Colorado State sideline and you saw hype. A Rams squad jumping up and down in unison, looking at our guys as if they weren’t shit.

Apparently this happened as well:

At first, this worried me. I looked over at the Idaho sideline and only saw a handful of players jumping up and down. Others remained to themselves. Walking around, or looking blankly onto the field while nestling their hands inside the collars of their shoulder pads.

Did Colorado State want it more? You see this every year in bowl games. Sure, one team could be objectively better and more talented. Objectively speaking, that team is still Colorado State. I was worried, knowing Idaho needed to want it more in order to win.

Again, I should have known better. I should have known this assistant coaching staff, who’ve heard everything Chuck Staben has said about the role football should play at this university, would have given everything in preparation for this game. In hindsight, knowing Idaho’s FBS death warrant had already been signed, of course there is no logical scenario in which these coaches wouldn’t get these players up to play this football game.

Colorado State didn’t come even a quarter as hard as it needed to in order to fend off Idaho’s upperclassmen playing the best football game of their lives.

How did I not know? I’m the one who kept telling you to defy your own expectations of this football team. I told you this team was different. And I still didn’t see this coming.

Then you could see it when Matt Linehan was animated, livid even, after being sacked and seeing routes not coming together during our first couple of drives in the first quarter.

He wanted it more than anybody in that stadium wearing green.

Personally, I was prepared for the worst when Colorado State hit its first touchdown, covering over half the field on a home run strike. That’s their game. Hit big plays and hit them often. I wasn’t sure if Idaho was going to work its efficient, methodical offense enough to overcome it.

I should know better than to doubt Matt Linehan.

We weren’t just efficient. We did whatever the fuck we wanted on offense.

I didn’t even see Deon Watson’s touchdown which put Idaho up 34-7 in the third quarter. I buried my head as he streaked down the sideline so I could collected myself for a minute and gauge if this was even real life.

Jordan Frysinger’s inhuman one-hand grab over the back of a defender was literally right in front of me. He glided into the end zone, and it was over. That was IT. This was definitely over at 55-28 and barely half a quarter remaining.

The University of Idaho won a bowl game in four hours, although it took four years to build. My lasting memory from that game may be walking up to Dallas Sandberg and Jake Manley, seniors from the 2015 squad, prior to the trophy presentation and profusely thanking them for the way they helped mold the players on this team.

“It’s a program,” Sandberg told me.

Sandberg would wake up the offensive linemen at six in the morning on a military regimen to get them in the weight room. This win was much for guys like him as it was for the 85 on the team right then.

Fans rushing the field that moment deliriously couldn’t believe what had just happened. To us, it was just another miraculous, brilliant Vandal bowl win. It’s just what we do.

To this football team it was the materialization of four years of pain, which for four hours they projected onto their hapless opponents from Fort Collins, Colorado.

It’s pain no longer. It’s one of the most well deserved nights in the history of Vandal football.

– – – – –

Here’s what else I didn’t expect. I didn’t expect it to be THAT cold. I had six layers, including four long-sleeve shirts, over my Nasty, Inebriated t-shirt. I had gloves. I wore three pairs of socks and I wore a Vandals flat-brim fitted hat.

My dumb ass also wore Vans, who soaked through and my feet were wet all game. I shouldn’t had a beanie. I should’ve had a scarf. I should’ve had a Vandal hoodie to go over my six layers. I mean, damn, Idaho, I don’t think I’ve ever been that cold in my life.

I didn’t expect my tailgate situation would be so unorganized. I planned on walking around and seeing a million people. It was cold as fuck. I didn’t want to take my gloves off and use my phone.

I showed up to the Corner Club tailgate with 30 Rainier tall boys from the gas station around the corner. I was looking for zip-ties to tie the Nepal flag I had to the piece of PVC pipe I was using as a flag pole. I used rubber bands instead.

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I expected to walk around and hand out Rainiers. It was too cold to use my phone and everybody was buzzing and busy. Thirty tall boys was more than enough for the Corner Club and Delta Sigma Phi tailgates. D Sig had heaters. I didn’t want to leave.

Did I mention it was cold?

I didn’t expect the number of Idaho fans as there were. I admittedly was not a part of the Vandal family in 2009, and my perception of what I saw on television that year didn’t match up to what I saw on Thursday.

THE ENTIRE SIDE OF THE STADIUM was filled was black, silver and gold and most of the fans on the other side of the stadium were Vandals. We had the entire end zone stand that was open filled with Vandals, mostly students I believe.

15578687_10154693741206181_3992089297410841574_nThe weather was miserable and we still came through.

I didn’t expect to see the number of former classmates that I did. All my friends from the Corner Club, Peter and Lauren on the field, Nick Cain finding me at the 50, Tyler Santi from the B-Dubs crew. Friends from The Argonaut, Stephan and Josh. Friends from Boise, Sean Foster and Robert Pfeifer. Rob Taylor.

That was still about two dozen less people than I was hoping to see.

Most of all, I didn’t expect to meet as many people who recognized me from this website right here and who kept encouraging me to write. People I have never met told me they love the concept of this website, what I do and that I give them another avenue to read about the Vandals.

I hear all of you. Just because the season is over doesn’t mean this blog is over. This is your website as much as it’s mine. I hear you loud and clear. Tubs at the Club will go on.

Your stories from the 2009 Humanitarian Bowl victory

I know where I was when Robb Akey decided to Go For Two. I know where I was when he told me to watch the second half because I was gonna love it.

I was at my best friend’s house in Kent. At the time it was just a game in the background. I wasn’t invested until late in the fourth quarter when it started to get hella cray.

At the time I knew of Idaho, I’d been talked to about going to Idaho but I didn’t think I would end up at Idaho. I’m a Husky fan, and all I thought was ‘huh, we beat that team. They made a bowl game?’

Shawn O’Neal showed up in my community college newsroom about a year prior to that to pitch The Argonaut and the University of Idaho to me. I was sitting there playing PS2 decked out in UW gear. With my ADHD sometimes I am occupied with something else when I’m having a conversation, but if I’m interested then I’m still listening. He walked out of there thinking he’d never hear from me ever again.

But I was listening. I just had another ambitions at the time. I was going to be a Husky. I was looking at Missouri. Or I was going to go overseas. I didn’t manage my ADHD well enough to get an academic resume for any of those schools.

Then I watched the H Bowl and my interest was piqued again. Over the next few months when schools started to fall off the table for me I started to take a serious look at Idaho again. Eventually I visited Moscow in December of 2010, almost a year after Going For Two. Then it was a done deal. Set. This is exactly where I wanted to be.

This probably would’ve happened without Enderle’s dying-seconds touchdown pass to Max Komar, but it didn’t hurt to put Idaho back in the front of my mind.

Where were you guys at? I asked over a plethora of social media mediums and this is what your response was.

Facebook:

Kelcie Mosley: “I was very cold and wet. And very disappointed until the last ten seconds.”

Sean Michael Foster: “I was in my Grandpa’s converted shed in Las Vegas, wearing shorts.”

Meredith Metsker: “It was SO cold. After freezing our butts off during the UI vs. BSU game in November, the band ordered long black and yellow parkas to wear over our uniforms while we were in the stands. We also got these nerdy looking hoodless sweatshirts that had the band logo on them. Perfect for band kids haha. We even had thicker, white gloves to wear that day. Despite all that preparation, I was still frozen by the end of the game. But I completely forgot about that when we set up for that 2-point conversion. And then, unbelievably, we won!! The band must have played the fight song at least three times. Probably more. And I’ll never forget Coach Akey saying into the microphone, ‘I’ve never seen this blue turf look so good!'”

“I remember our director at the time, Torrey Lawrence, saying that the last time Idaho had gone to a bowl game had been his first year as director. Now he’s the director of the entire School of Music. I also remember that we played our Michael Jackson show for halftime. The day before the game, the band was out practicing on the blue turf in our parkas. There’s a picture somewhere on the interwebs of me walking like a zombie in that stupid parka haha. And this was before I got smart and started using plastic trumpet mouthpieces for marching band, so my lips kept freezing to my metal mouthpiece! And it was hard to keep us all in tune. We kept drifting flat because of the cold. #bandproblems

Spencer Farrin: “I was at the 2009 Humanitarian Bowl. It was the most fun game I’ve ever watched as a Vandal. I didn’t cheer once. Didn’t make a sound all game. When Idaho lined up for the game-winning 2-point conversion, I was standing by Bowling Green’s assistant SID. Preston Davis caught it and I smiled. When the clock hit zero on the kickoff, I turned to the BGSU SID and he said, “Well, congrats man” and I said, “That was a hell of a game. Good luck.” And then we both grabbed our many bags of gear and ran down to the media area. He went straight to the interview room and I dumped my stuff in the doorway and ran onto the field just in time to see Robb Akey raise the trophy. Then I ran back into the interview room to finish my recap, create the photo album, update stats, and prepare for postgame interviews.”

Dallas Charles Hammer: “Easily the best day/night of my life as a Vandal student. My dad got us six tickets, seven rows up on the BGSU side. It was supposed to be my maternal grandparents, my parents, my brother, and myself. A few days before Christmas, both of those grandparents were each diagnosed with a form of cancer. We originally thought we would sell the tickets and not go, but the grandparents refused to let us do that. Obviously, the whole family was in a pretty tough state emotionally over those holidays, making the first Idaho bowl game I could really remember mean a whole lot more to a 17-year-old freshman who had no idea how to cope with that kind of news.

I remember thinking Idaho had it in the bag all game long until Freddie Barnes scored early in the fourth quarter to tie it up. After that, I was terrified they would choke it away; Max Komar had dropped a few balls that night and I thought he would let the game slip through his hands if Idaho needed a score to win it late. Fast forward to :32 seconds left, and I was telling my Dad that even though they had lost, I had a great time. First play after the kickoff, Enderle rolled out and hit Davis with a bomb on the far sideline. Okay, great. They’re gonna get close to the end zone before breaking my heart.

Incomplete pass. There’s 8 seconds left on the clock. Great. One play left, it’s going to go to Komar, He’s going to drop it. Sports suck. Except he did’t drop it. Redemption. I can still picture that weird slide across the goal-line into that atrocious orange end-zone as he caught the ball. I have never screamed so vigorously in my life. Akey sends the offense back out for two points and the win, and Bowling Green takes the longest time-out in the history of sports. I was on the verge of tears standing right in the midst of the entirety of the BGSU coaches’ families.

As much as I remember the Komar touchdown, I don’t really remember Davis catching the 2-pt conversion. I remember Farquhar’s ensuing kickoff to the ONE YARD LINE (greatest kick in Idaho history) more than I remember the conversion. I remember that he was WIDE open in the back of the end-zone, but that’s about it. I was in utter disbelief that they had found a way to win that game. I just watched my school win one of the best bowl games of all time.”

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From Idaho Scout message board:

User alle9219:
“I was working in FL and my now wife was flying out on Christmas break to visit me, arriving late at late after the game. I DVR’ed the game and watched it live, speeding off to the airport to pick her up after I saw the end. She asked if we won and I just said it was an amazing game. We watched it when we got home up until the first play of the final drive when the DVR cut off. She wasn’t too happy about that lol! It took me a while to live that one down.”
User Tay83843:
“I was there with seats on the 50 yd line and behind the Bowling Green bench. I have never seen so many Vandal fans at a game. Unbelievable game that I thought would change the Idaho football program. Little did I know that our Coach had no direction and we would be worse off than when he inherited the program. I think Freddie Barnes caught 3 more TD’s as I wrote this. Our defense was ok, but not great. We won a lot of close games that year. We never blew out anyone and couldn’t beat the top teams in the Conference. Boise State handled us with Reader at QB, and Kaepernick with his pistol posse blew us out in Reno. Reader was also the QB against Fresno State, and Ryan Matthews ran over us. Then Robert Turbin had a big day against us on Senior Day that had both Reader and Enderle playing. Akey’s first loss against the Utah State and the point where the Aggies ascended and we started our descent.”
User DTDvandal4:
“My family had all been Cougs or Vandals. I had just barely started religiously following vandals the 2008 season. However, I was committed to going to WSU. My dad a Vandal Alum got us tickets to the game in sky center from our bronco neighbor. I was excited as it would be my 4th in person vandal game of season. We tailgated with my dad’s old fraternity buddies and had a blast. I remeber knowing they werent going to lose. Even after Freddy Barnes scored, my dad wanted to leave to beat traffic. I made him stay and boy do neither of us regret it. Once Preston Davis caught the 2 point ball I was so excited. I remeber only one thing I could think of at that moment, how I wanted to be a Vandal, so I switched my commitment from WSU to Idaho and have never regretted it. 8 Months Later I was in Gods Country. The 2009 game is why I am a Vandal and a Vandal is who I am!”
User 808vandal:
“I flew in from Hawaii for the game and went with a friend who lives in Nampa. At the time I believe he was a season ticket holder for bjc. I remember two bjc fans who had purchased Bowling Green gear and were cheering like crazy for every thing BG did good. They said they just hated Idaho and it’s fans. They were noticeable quite on idaho’s last drive and score, and quietly (and quickly) left after Idaho’s last TD.”
vandallarry33:
“I was at a resort in Scottsdale setting up for my wedding which was the following day. Myself, brothers, and a couple of my best men (Vandals) were huddled at the tiny resort bar watching it all unfold. We got some funny looks but it was awesome. Being there with my bros and best friends made it all the more epic. The good luck continued with an awesome wedding the following New Year Evening. Epic weekend that will never be forgotten by any who attended.”
Vandal83:
“Great game. Great times! A buddy and I actually had sideline passes for the game! Here we are with Vandal great Joel Thomas who was coaching at Washington and had come for the game. Funny story, after the two point conversion to go ahead I was so delerious that I started to rush the field not realizing we still had to kickoff to Bowling Green. One of our own lineman who was also celebrating knocked me flat to the turf where I saw police taking down another misguided fan in the end zone. Glad I did not have to celebrate that night in the Ada county jail! Here’s to another Vandal victory and staying undefeated in bowl games!”
BAVANDAL:
“Gernika, Vizcaya (Basque Country) Spain
We streamed it over the internet at my sisters house +8 hours ahead of mountain time. A bunch of Idahoans watching late into the night in a foreign country.”
whridaho:
“At the game of course. Stormed the field and remember standing next to Greenwood. He was a giant sized receiver. But Iupati and Matt Cleveland still made him look normal sized.”
ozzie69:
“At the game and enjoyed that ending as much as any of the nail biters.  After the game went for a few beverages with Randy Hall and Joel Thomas and wives of course.  Great weekend!”
VandalJosh:
“I was stuck in NY state. It was just after deployment and the Army wouldn’t approve leave until February, so I watched it at home with some diehard Oregon fans. It was the only game I was able to watch that season.”

Twitter:

Josh Starkey: “I was there (been to both HumBowls). I remember being stunned after BG scored the go-ahead TD with 32 secs … then the Hail Mary to Preston davis. Loved going for two. And remember Max Komar dropping everything but the 2pt.”hb4

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