8 reasons WSU WR corps will sparkle in '14

WASHINGTON STATE's receiving corps isn't just loaded with talent. It's loaded with veteran talent. The Cougars return seven of their top eight wideouts from 2013. Collectively, they caught 329 of the 470 passes the Cougs completed in ‘13.

Add in Brett Bartolone, WSU's leading receiver in 2012 who was dogged by injury last season, and you have eight guys in the rotation with major experience. Four of the eight are seniors, three are juniors, and the only youngster in the group is a sophomore who was an All-Pac-12 honorable mention pick last season.

In living color, here's a look at eight reasons why WSU's 2014 receiving corps figures to be one of the finest in the nation ...

In great shape and coming off a great spring, he's drawing national attention. Last season, his first in crimson, Mayle caught 42 passes for 539 yards and a team-tying 7 TDs. His 72-yard catch and run at Cal was the longest TD pass of the season for the Cougs.

Led the 2013 Cougs in receptions -- by a long way –- with 74 grabs for 807 yards and 7 TDs. Ranked fifth in Pac-12 in receptions per game and 12th in receiving yards per game.

Averaged a team-leading 16.2 yards per reception in 2013 and had the most catches (10) of 20 yards or more. In all, hauled down 40 passes for 647 yards and team-tying & 7 TDs.

He burst onto the scene as a true freshman in 2013, catching 46 passes for 614 yards and 3 TDs en route to earning honorable mention All-Pac-12 plaudits. His 13.3 yards-per-catch average was the second-best on team.

He followed up an outstanding 2013 season (51 receptions for 490 yards) with a terrific spring campaign. Had career-high seven passes for 72 yards in New Mexico Bowl. Named WSU's 2013 Special Teams Most Valuable Player and earned Pac-12 All-Academic first team.

He was converted from running back to receiver in 2012 but went down early with injury that season after catching just nine passes. He made up for lost time in 2013, catching 39 passes for 311 yards and four touchdowns. He also served as the Cougs' primary kick returner.

Averaged 11.5 hashes per catch on 37 receptions for 425 yards and 3 TDs in 2013. Sits just 14 catches away from 100 career.

As a true freshman, he caught a team-leading 53 passes in 2012 and was named All-Pac-12 honorable mention. Undone by injuries in 2013, he caught but 10 passes and appeared in just five games. At the spring game this past April he was sidelined with what appeared to be a shoulder or arm injury. If he's full healthy in 2014, WSU's receiving rotation will get an instant infusion of proven consistency.

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