Who is someone who we didn't see last year on D, either because of redshirt, injury, etc. that we should be excited to see this year?
There are several guys that could fit into this category. I'd say Jay Matthews. He's been working hard and should be able to get out there and help us out. He understand the defense really well. He's sat back and taken the coaching perspective while he's been out injured and he's very smart and good at picking things up. He gets very intense in making plays.
Tyree, who are the strongest guys on the defense?
Darren Markle, Alex Hoffman-Ellis and Anthony Laurenzi are some of the guys who stand out.
Deone Bucannon was a big lift for us last year, but he could be a beast if he bulked up a bit. Has he put on any significant weight since last year?
Deone has put on some size, he's filling out his frame really well. I would guess he's put on a good 10 pounds of muscle since last year, he's been getting bigger all around.
How's Brandon Rankin doing?
He's doing good, showing up for all the workouts as he's coming back from surgery. He's been doing everything we've been doing in our workouts, which is great because we need him and everyone else to work hard.
Some posters continually question the D Line > I think that they may be a surprise…
I think our d-line will be a lot better than last year. We have some new additions, like Toni Pole who was injured last year. I feel like he'll have an impact, he's so strong and low to the ground and able to push people back. and then you have guys Travis Long, and we all know what he can do, and Anthony Laurenzi. There are a lot of guys who are looking like they can make an impact this year for us.
Is there one game in particular you guys have circled heading into the year?
I like to take it one game at a time, so I'm looking towards the season opener against Idaho State and playing in front of the home crowd at Martin Stadium. So I guess I circle all of them. A lot of these teams we haven't been on the winning side of the scoreboard against lately. But that's going to change this year.
How is C.J. Mizell doing?
He's doing good, working hard. He's been enthusiastic and is enjoying being with his teammates. And he's been running around just being C.J., just running around being crazy and giving us a lift and making us all laugh.
Do you think fans' expectations for a .500 season and a possible bowl bid are realistic?
I'm definitely thinking bowl game. All the tools we need, all the talent we need is here. We're young but a lot of guys got experience last year. That's all going to contribute to a good season for us this year.
Keep the questions coming for me on the CF.C message boards and I'll answer as many as I can!
Cougar safety Tyree Toomer was the third leading tackler for the Cougs in 2010, with 62 tackles (48 solo). He came to WSU from St. John Bosco in Bellflower, Calif., where he was a football and track standout. He played in all 13 of WSU's games as a true freshman, including four starts. Injuries took away his second season but upon his return in 2010, he started every game at free safety.