Around the Conference in Cartoon Characters

Kim Hastings FishWrap, FishWrap Archive

December 17, 1989, was the day “The Simpsons” dethroned Cosby before his “hobby” had a chance to do the job. In the 26 years since, TV’s first prime-time cartoon has presented viewers with many memorable characters.

With the announcement this week of Harry Shearer‘s departure, the iconic cartoon will be without the voices of Mr. Burns, Ned Flanders, Principal Skinner, and a host of other residents of the not-so-fictional city of Springfield.

Godspeed, Ned.

Godspeed, Ned.

But the shockwave passing through the shorts-eating world of Bart Simpson made ponder the place of ‘Cartoons in the World.’ Are there cartoon characters that could be associated with the schools of the Pac-12? We asked no less an expert than the ‘Magic 8 Ball.’

Thank you, MagicBo

Thank you, MagicBo

First up, the Cougars of Washington State. There is something a little … off about WSU. From Mike Price‘s signature implosion at an Alabama’s ‘G-String cafe’, to Paul Wulff’s opening presser consisting mostly of “I Hate Purple,” things just aren’t right up there.

Add in Mike Leach‘s famous diatribe against “fat little girlfriends” and you have a certain mad scientist vibe in The Vamoose, or whatever they call that God-forsaken part of the world. associates Sheldon Plankton from Spongebob Squarepants with Washington State.

Ack! Throw the ball 100 times!

Ack! Throw the ball 100 times!

Next, we want to talk about the Wildcats of the ‘University of Arizona.‘ The recent announcement of Amanda Pflugrad‘s new job with the Celtics makes us remember

You're welcome, and you know who you are.

You’re welcome, and you know who you are.

the bottle throwers who injured Katelynn Johnson.

Are we having fun yet?

Are we having fun yet?

Then we remember what a scar on the landscape Tucson is – and we have the cartoon character associates within the Wildcat family, to prove it.

Dr. Blight

Dr. Blight

The Golden Bears of the University of California is next on our radar.

Berkeley is in one of America’s most beautiful parts of the world. They have a strong recruitment base right in their back yard – the weather is among the best in the conference and the school has an academic tradition bested only by Wazzu. California should be strong. But they are not strong. Most of the time, they are downright bad.

Strong Bad

Strong Bad

Ah, those wacky funsters we know as the Huskies of the University of Washington. 

What can be said about the Huskies that hasn’t already been said by the judge in the Jerramy Stevens case?

What admonition can we give the Dogs that hasn’t already been stated by Hope Solo‘s probation officer?

The Huskies have spent the last decade-and-a-half deciding whether to be mostly evil or merely inept. Hmmm, evil ineptitude — works for me.

Bow Down to Snidely Whiplash.

Bow Down to Snidely Whiplash‘s feelings about our in-state rival (not Linfield, the other one) are evolving as time goes by. While we used to lump the Beavers of Oregon State into the same category as Washington, decades of humiliating the Corvallis Unfortunates have softened our hearts.

Now we find OSU kind of … adorable. Have you ever put your hand against your little brother’s forehead at arm’s length and invited him to swing away at you? That’s what the Civil War has become.

The Beavers bleat about “doing it the right way” and “family atmosphere” — all the while chewing their wool-filled pillows because — they aren’t us. I find them charming.

Polly Purebred does things "the right way" too.

Polly Purebred does things “the right way,” too.

The Fighting Ducks of the University of Oregon stand alone atop Mt. Awesome. Our strong work ethic, our commitment to progressive principles, as well as athletic and academic rigor, makes the UO the pinnacle to which all others should aspire. The only cartoon appropriate for the Good Guys is …

What else could it be?

What else could it be?

Go Ducks!

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