NAVIGATING AROUND THE Puget Sound region is not easy right now, but at least one Cougar plans to watch his alma mater play basketball tonight against Portland at KeyArena: Paul Wulff.
After driving by a myriad of snowy rooftops, the third-year Washington State coach said during Tuesday's Pac-10 football teleconference that he does not think snow will be an advantage for his team when it closes out the regular season Dec. 4 against Washington at Martin Stadium.
"Not really," he said. "I don't know if this is going to be any different for anyone."
Questions about weather seemingly have occurred before any Apple Cup held in Pullman since 1992, when the Cougars took advantage of the snowy conditions that year to earn a 42-23 win against UW.
WSU (2-9 overall, 1-7 Pac-10) is into its second consecutive bye week, which has given Wulff plenty of time to analyze the Huskies (4-6, 3-4). He does not anticipate any surprises, though.
"The makeup of any team is going to be pretty similar throughout the season," Wulff said.
Wulff was asked about senior wide receiver Daniel Blackledge, whom the previous coaching staff used as a true freshman in 2007 even though he only caught one pass behind standouts Michael Bumpus, Charles Dillon and Brandon Gibson. He is third on the team with 23 receptions for 324 yards this season despite missing a game because of a concussion.
"I would love to have Daniel back for another year," Wulff said. "He's really kind of stepped up and played better. Not having him for the Cal game was a big loss for us."