Michael Penix Jr. reveals his plans for Washington's bowl game
Michael Penix Jr. isn’t done yet.
The standout Washington quarterback just completed one of the best regular seasons in program history with an Apple Cup win over Washington State on Saturday. That win sent Utah to the Pac-12 Championship Game to face USC. Despite a 10-2 record, the Huskies will wait to find out their bowl fate until after the conference’s title game.
They do not need to wait to find out if Penix will be part of the bowl game, though. He was asked multiple times on Monday if he planned to play in whatever game UW is selected for or if he’d choose to sit out. Penix is still undecided on the NFL Draft, but he doesn’t plan to sit out the bowl.
“I really haven’t had the opportunity to think about what I’m doing at the next level yet, whether I’m staying or going,” Penix said Monday, according to The Seattle Times’ Mike Vorel. “But as far as the bowl game, as far as right now, I’m definitely looking forward to playing with my team and being there for those guys. I definitely want to be there for those guys.”
Penix followed up later and definitively said he’s planning to play in whatever bowl game the Huskies go to.
Michael Penix Jr. was asked a couple times today about whether he plans to play in Washington's bowl game. Just now, he said: "Right now, I'm looking forward to playing in a bowl game, being out there with my guys."
— Christian Caple (@ChristianCaple) November 28, 2022
From Penix’s perspective, UW’s success this season and his health have provided a collegiate first. Entering the year, he’d yet to play in more than six games because of injury. That meant that when his former team, Indiana, made the Gator Bowl in 2019 and the Outback Bowl in 2020, Penix was relegated to spectator.
The fifth-year junior has been spectacular this season for UW. He leads the nation in passing with 4,354 yards. He’s only the second player in program history to top 4,000 passing yards in a season and sits 105 yards shy of taking the program record for single-season passing yardage (4,458, Cody Pickett in 2002).
With 29 touchdown passes so far, he also sits four shy of tying Keith Price (33, 2011) for second-most all-time.
UW has a very realistic shot at making the Rose Bowl. If USC beats Utah in the title game on Friday and goes to the College Football Playoff, the Rose Bowl would get its choice of Pac-12 teams. The Huskies would be expected to be ranked higher in the CFP rankings than Utah, and the Rose Bowl took the Utes last season.
Washington’s last Rose Bowl appearance came in 2018.