Road to 1991 Perfection: Injury Couldn't Stop Pahukoa from Playing in the Rose Bowl

The Husky free safety got hurt early in the game against Michigan, which would have been a game-ending deal for most players.

Early in the 1992 Rose Bowl, Shane Pahukoa tackled Michigan running back Ricky Powers and down they went. 

Everything was OK, until players from both teams ended up in the pile.

Pahukoa, the University of Washington's starting free safety, came out of it with a separated shoulder, for most players a game-ending moment.

Not for Shane.

"Coming to the sidelines, it was like there was no way I'm not going to play in this game," Pahukoa said. "I toughed it out thought half and at halftime, it could have been Tylenol, it could have been Advil — I don't know what they gave me — but let's just say I had no pain and I went out firing."

This is another in a series of vignettes about the UW's 1991 national championship team, supplementing the conversation for the pandemic-delayed and -shortened season. We're dealing with game 12 of this throwback series, the '92 Rose Bowl against Michigan.

Pahukoa was able to finish out the 34-14 victory over Michigan, but his day was over once he left the field. 

"Unfortunately I wasn't able to partake in all the after-game shenanigans," he said. "I couldn't even move my arm; it was in a sling. I sat in my hotel room in Pasadena, icing it and not being able to sleep, rolling around."

The Huskies defensive back from Marysville, Washington, would have liked to have done everything, but he wasn't complaining. 

"The consolation is, you know, is we won the national championship," Pahukoa said. "That's always good." 

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