PRACTICE: Breske looking at more young talent

PULLMAN -- The Cougars suited up Thursday for their final practice of the week before headed to Corvallis to take on Oregon State. A promising young defensive lineman, hampered by injuries most of fall camp, has come on strong in recent days. Thursday Night Football also showcased some big hits.

When freshman defensive lineman Destiny Vaeao arrived in Pullman this fall, a lot was expected from the young run-stopper. Coaches and critics knew depth would be an issue this season, and some young faces would have to contribute immediately.

Vaeao and fellow freshman Xavier Cooper came into fall camp as a couple of the biggest defensive linemen the team possessed. Though both have been hampered by injuries, the potential seemed limitless for both players. Each possessed a relentless motor. Defensive coordinator Mike Breske said the team might have a couple cornerstones to build upon. Vaeao, he noted, is finally starting to shake off the nagging injuries that have slowed him this fall.

"We're trying to get all those guys rotated in this week," Breske said. "To what degree, we'll find out. He's had a good week of practice."

Vaeao ran with the first-team defense for a majority of the evening at the left end position in what appeared to be plays protecting against the run.

Breske said Oregon State poses some issues for his defense, and any defense for that matter. The team features a pro-style offense that is balanced and effective.

"Very ball-controlled offense," Breske said. "We got to be ready for the play-action pass. If you miss a tackle -- bam. Big play."

Breske added although Cooper and Vaeao have been promising in practice, this team needs to continue to build and grow. The brutally honest Breske said he intends on building this program through recruiting.

"I'm not satisfied with our depth, but we're going to get better depth," Breske said. "We're going to get it through recruiting … and recruiting, and recruiting and recruiting. These are the guys we've got right now, and we've got to get them ready every week."

As for the weekly Thursday Night Football session, big hits were the story.

Freshmen linebackers Kache Palacio and Jeremiah Allison once again highlighted the group full of raw talent, garnering some boisterous ‘oohs and aahs from the upperclassmen. On back-to-back plays, Palacio and Allison laid the wood to different running backs trying to find a lane.

On the first hit, junior scat-back Theron West tried to get to the edge, but Palacio, playing the BUCK linebacker position, wouldn't allow it, flattening the fleet-footed junior behind the line.

On the next play, walk-on freshman Manuel Lamson tried to find a hole through the guards on a simple draw play. Allison met him at the line, dropping the ball carrier in his tracks.

The Cougars have shown they have untapped talent at the linebacker position waiting in the wings for their chance. It's just a matter of time.

The 1s
Running with the 1s for the scrimmage:
LT- John Fullington (Brevick got some time)
LG- Wade Jacobson (Goetz/Meighen/Brevick got some time)
C- Elliott Bosch (Meighen got some time)
RG- Jake Rodgers (Goetz/Meighen/Brevick got some time)
RT- Gunnar Eklund (Brevick got some time)
QB– Connor Halliday (Jeff Tuel got some time)
RB– Teondray Caldwell/Marcus Mason
X-WR– Marquess Wilson (Dominique Williams got some snaps)
Y-WR– Brett Bartolone (Gino Simone got some time)
Z-WR– Isiah Myers (Bennett Bontemps got some snaps)
H-WR– Gabe Marks (Gino Simone got some snaps)

LT- Matthew Bock and Destiny Vaeao
NT- Xavier Cooper
RT- Ioane Gauta (Steven Hoffart got some snaps)
BUCK- Travis Long (Logan Mayes got some time)
SAM- Cyrus Coen
MIKE- Darryl Monroe
WILL- Justin Sagote
CB- Damante Horton
CB– Daniel Simmons
FS- Casey Locker (Tyree Toomer got half the snaps)
SS- Deone Bucannon

LS- Alex Den Bleyker
P- Mike Bowlin

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