Things were calm all over Husky Stadium as the team finished up its final practice of the spring before the "Purple and Gold" game scheduled for Saturday.
Athletic director Scott Woodward has been a regular at practices, chatting with boosters, talking to students and, once in a while, holding court with reporters.
Bob Condotta, the Seattle Times reporter, and I, sought him out midway through practice, and got him for a few minutes to discuss how the six-year agreement between the UW and Washington State moving the Apple Cup to Qwest Field starting in 2010 so suddenly fell through.
He certainly seemed perplexed by the sudden announcement to cease talks coming from WSU on Friday, specifically from AD Jim Sterk.
But as he also iterated, "I never did (think it was a done deal). I was clear with you guys the whole time that it was far from done."
And apparently he was dead-on.
The idea was first made public last week by the Spokesman-Review newspaper, citing an unnamed source within the athletic department of the Cougars. And the first ones to discuss it were Sterk and WSU coach Paul Wulff.
This week, Sterk spoke about the topic again, addressed it in a question-and-answer session, and held a press conference Friday to explain why the agreement had fallen through.
Sterk said the biggest discrepancy was in ticket allotment. Initially, it was going to be split down the middle, at 31,000 apiece. But Sterk indicated the Huskies asked for a bigger share since they were selling more season tickets, unwilling to specify a number. A Spokesman-Review report said it was 38,000 tickets.
That was one of the issues, Woodward said.
"I think there were other issues out there as well," Woodward said. "First and foremost, we're going to take care of our student-athletes, which we have when we've talked about that this idea. Secondly, (we're going to take care of) our fans and season ticketholders."
Asked if hard feelings existed between the two schools after the deal fell through, Woodward said, "I don't know, certainly not between Jim Sterk and I. I have the utmost admiration for him as an athletic director and as a person. He's a great guy."
Woodward said he'll continue to listen to ideas presented by First & Goal, the management company of the Seahawks, on the possibility that future UW games could be played at Qwest Field.
"As long as they benefit the University of Washington," he said.