Podcast of Champions – Vacation, all I ever wanted

This week on the Podcast of Champions hosts David Woods and Ryan Abraham have a lot to talk about despite most of the Pac-12 coaches and conference administrators being on vacation this time of year. They start off discussing the Pac-12 football coaches who are on the hot seat, USC’s latest athletic related lawsuit, Washington’s $120 million switch from Nike to Adidas and of course all of your Pac-12 football questions!

Shane wrote in giving his take on a question we received last week where he tags each Pac-12 football program to a Star Wars character. We thought his analysis was amazing so we wanted to share what he wrote with you here (you can hear it on the podcast around the 1 hour, 8 minute mark):

David, sir

One week ago, in this very galaxy, you stirred a hornets nest of Disney princesses and cheeseburgers… and although I initially disagreed with some of the choices, I wanted to spend some time diving in on your Pac-12 team Star Wars comparisons, because… of course I did.

I’m sure some of these knuckleheads will have pushback on your choices (and as I’m writing this on a Friday, I have no doubt we’ve already listened to four strongly-worded emails on this dumb subject), but here are my expanded Star Wars explanations, in the order you initially presented them, further cementing your assertions. Enjoy: 

USC is Darth Vader – A badass caped sorcerer that effortlessly hurls opponents across the room, but when you take the iconic helmet off, its just a bald unrecognizable white guy on life support.  

UCLA is Obi Wan Kanobe – A pale blue ghost with a noteworthy history of sacrificing themselves once everybody is watching. 


Vader? gloves. 

Luke? gloves. 

Kylo Ren? gloves. 

Who operates a god damn lightsaber without gloves?!?! Obi Wan. Talk about competitive disadvantage. 

Stanford is Chewbacca – Obviously. The only character to beat a droid at a game of Dejarik. Sure, The Pac-12 has 565 national championships or whatever, but like 300 of them are Stanford winning competitions that other schools don’t even attempt to compete in. I bet in real life Stanford literally has a championship in futuristic hologram chess, and I bet a droid came in second. Nice work nerds. 

Cal is Han Solo – A character noted for not offensing: always in hiding, trying to avoid getting caught. Casually tosses aside the difference between time and distance at an interstellar scale (yes that’s a 12 parsecs reference!) while drinking in an underground multi-cultural dive bar, and maintaining an effortless 70’s hipster style. Also, always broke. The most Cal thing possible. 

Oregon State is C3PO – Dude had to be put together with parts from a bunch of other droids to even function. He’s cute and tries hard, but has spent parts of multiple seasons broken in pieces and being carried around by others. 

Washington is Luke Skywalker – Actually whips ass most of the time, but tends to get a hand chopped off, get thrown down a garbage chute, or find out who their daddy is, whenever they face an opponent stronger than them. 

WSU is Princess Leia – The only character that pursues a kiss with a sibling.

Utah is Rey – Spent her whole life foraging in a wasteland without water until she was pulled up into something bigger. Took a couple hits while getting up to speed once the competition level picked up, but I think is going to be a badass for a long time. Also, if you disparage either on Twitter a whole bunch of dorks will come out of the woodwork to shout you down. 

Arizona and Arizona State are Uncle Owen and Aunt Beru – First heard of them like 40 years ago, and in the subsequent time, they’ve done absolutely nothing of note, other than becoming burning skeletons in the desert. Seriously, in 41 years they’ve combined to win 2 conference championships. 

Oregon is Kylo Ren – Born less than 25 years ago, was scary for like 15 minutes, but took their shiny helmet off and you realized it was just a whiny little kid who owed all of their power to an old relative. They subsequently melt down and fall apart when shit doesn’t go their way. 

Colorado is Lando – Looks super cool in gold and black, and I’m never quite sure if they’re really good or sneaky bad, but those are the only two options. 

Keep up the work. 

Your friend and compatriot, 


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