Huskies Insider Blog

Afternoon reading: Husky Stadium edition

Obviously to commemorate the reconstruction of Husky Stadium, we ran a package of stores in the paper looking back at the place.

John McGrath wrote an excellent column today about the stadium and it's trademark noise levels.

And yet, a question lingers:

Will the new Husky Stadium be as loud as the old one has been?

Artists’ conceptions of the project reveal cantilevered roofs designed to shield spectators from the rain, with the ulterior benefit of containing sound waves that escape in an uncovered stadium. The construction of a protected upper deck on the south side, in 1950, first amplified the noise at Husky Stadium. (Adding 15,000 voices didn’t hurt, either.)

The 1987 installment of the north-side upper deck pushed the seating capacity to 72,500 – still more voices bouncing off a roof, creating the phenomenon that established UW as home of a crowd loud enough to register a 130-decibel reading during a 1992 night game against Nebraska.

How loud is 130 decibels?

“It is the recognized threshold of ear pain,” notes the Huskies’ Gameday Magazine, “and the noise equivalent of being 100 feet away from an accelerating jet.”I caught up with a few former Huskies - Don James, Sonny Sixkiller, Marques Tuiasosopo and Lawyer Milloy - for some of their memories on the stadium.

And once Milloy signed with the Huskies, he got to be a part of the mystique.

“The tunnel is a magical place,” he said. “Before the game, we would be behind the opposing teams barking. I can remember seeing some of the opposing players turn around and there was fear in their eyes.”

And, of course, moments later they would leave the tunnel and charge onto the field with the siren wailing.

“When the horn went off, it was 100 or so men ready to go to war,” he said. “Hearing that horn was like seeing the ‘Batman’ signal in the air, you went into action.” Here's a list of nine momentous games played at Husky Stadium.

Here's the inside pages ...

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