Cougs need more 'mo against Stanford

ON ONE HAND, the Cougs are 3-2, and they've gotten themselves halfway to bowl eligibility with their best player sidelined. Assuming Jeff Tuel is ready to return for Saturday's homecoming game against the No. 7 Stanford Cardinal, are the Cougs ready to pull off the upset?

Maybe, though the Cougs are a huge underdog, more than 20 points. And it would be asking a lot for Tuel to be picture perfect in his return.

But it's not too much to ask others to step up their game, though, against Stanford.

Wazzu has too often in games let momentum sit unclaimed, until the opponent finally grabs it, almost by default. The Cougs need to grab hold of it for a chunk of time, rip off a couple scores and get the other guys hanging their heads.

In Week 6, the offensive line will need to do a better job of protection than they did against UCLA. The o-line will also need to open more holes and the running backs need to do a better job of making people miss than they did against the Bruins, too.

That won't be easy, as Stanford is a considerably better defensive team than UCLA. It just means the Cougs will have to step their game up that much more.

The receivers need to get back to their catch-after-the-run mentality coming off a UCLA game where no WSU pass went for more than 21 yards.

Over on defense, WSU gets into this frustrated funk, it's been seen a few different times this season, where at the end of the play guys are just standing around rather than playing to the whistle and getting in on the tackle.

That needs to change – no matter how things are going at the time.

Hustle and "want to" is how turnovers happen, and for an offense that had so much trouble getting into the end zone as the Cougars' did last weekend, maybe giving them one more opportunity would have made the difference.

But that turnover isn't going to happen unless it's made to happen.

Stanford presents a myriad of matchup problems. They're athletic, they run and they're very physical. And their quarterback is playing head and shoulders above the competition right now.

But WSU hasn't come close to giving it their best game yet. Wouldn't it be something if they broke it out this Saturday..

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