WSU coach Paul Wulff said during his Tuesday Pac-10 teleconference that will not change when the Cougars (2-9 overall, 1-7 Pac-10) host the Huskies on Dec. 4. He said the coaching staff wanted to limit Tuel's scrambling ability early in the season because it made him more susceptible to injury. Wulff said it was important for Tuel to remain healthy this season — he missed the final three games last year with a subluxed right kneecap — to gain experience.
He said the coaching staff instead used several sets that employed either two tight ends or a pair of running backs early in the season to stimulate the running game. When WSU struggled to move the ball, Wulff said he and offensive coordinator Todd Sturdy opened up the playbook to feature an offense that is closer to what they envision.
They also wanted Tuel, who entered the season with just five starts, to become more comfortable with the offense. Then with OSU's struggles to contain quarterbacks with scrambling ability, Wulff said the coaching staff became more comfortable with Tuel running.
Tuel, who also completed 10 of 15 passes for 157 yards, helped the Cougars end their 16-game conference losing streak. Wulff said the win was important for the team's confidence headed into consecutive bye weeks, but he said the players cannot carry it for too long.
"Looking back doesn't help us," he said. "Hopefully by the time we get there (Apple Cup) it will be something in the distant past."
The victory put Wulff's three-year WSU record at 5-31.
"I said this opening day ... there's so many things we have to get into place before we get wins here," he said. "The wins are going to start happening."
Wulff said that also could be a recruiting boon. Seven assistant coaches are on the road recruiting through Wednesday.
"If I'm a parent and see the progress we're making academically, I think that should mean a lot," he said. "I think that would mean it's a healthy situation."
"I'm sure it's something he wants to look into," he said. "I just don't know the realistic possibility of that happening."