Do Cougs now control their GameDay destiny?

ONE OF THE longest countdowns in Washington State football could be nearing its end, two independent sources with knowledge of a recent development tell And it marks just one more reason to circle Week 4, when the Cougs hosts Oregon in Pullman on Sept. 20.

ESPN has reserved a group of rooms in a Pullman hotel for that weekend, the two sources tell

Of course, a reservation doesn't mean a done deal because the Cougs almost certainly would need to start the season at 3-0 if the long-sought goal of having GameDay come to Pullman is to be realized. And so must the Ducks, who open with South Dakota but then host a formidable Michigan State team in Week 2 before wrapping up non-conference action against Wyoming.

WSU opens with Rutgers in Seattle on Aug. 28, then travels to Reno Sept. 5 to play Nevada before the Pullman opener Sept. 13 against Portland State.

The iconic Cougar flag known as "Ol' Crimson" has been flying on GameDay for more than a decade, courtesy of a remarkable network of Coug fans across the country. It serves as a weekly reminder to Lee Corso & Co. that the Palouse awaits.

The tradition began in 2003, in the third of WSU's three-straight 10-win seasons. It was fueled by loyal patrons of the message boards who insisted that "if GameDay won't come to Pullman, Pullman will come to GameDay."

Earlier this summer, WSU AD Bill Moos told a gathering of Cougar fans in Bellingham that he has a "wonderful relationship with ESPN" and knows "they'd love to come to Pullman."

He added, "What we've got to do is get a string of wins put together and have an opponent who has done the same. Let me just say this, my staff is ready for them and we've got it all mapped out with where we would put them and how we could accommodate them.

"It's only a matter of time before it happens and I think we'll have a good enough team this year, where it could happen in 2014."

The closest Pullman may have come to hosting GameDay is thought to be mid-season of 2011, when Stanford and Andrew Luck came to town. After a nail-biting loss to UCLA the week prior deprived dropped the Cougs to 3-2, GameDay's Chris Fowler tweeted: "This might hurt, Wazzu fans. Gameday was planning on Pullman to salute 4-1 start/107 weeks of The Flag b4 the 8pt lead was lost. Someday..."

The flag's record is now at 147 total GameDay appearances -- 146 of them consecutively.

If GameDay does indeed get to Pullman, will that mean no more Ol' Crimson each week behind the heads of Herbie and the gang?

Ol' Crimson co-founder John Bley told CF.C last fall that he doesn't see Ol' Crimson stopping its streak if GameDay does get to Pullman. The flag, after all, is now a nationally recognized college football tradition.

Taking Ol' Crimson into hostile territory: the U of W

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