Friday practice: good to be home, say Cougs

PULLMAN — Washington State senior linebacker Cyrus Coen minced no words Friday evening after he and his fellow Cougars — including newly arrived defensive back Jeff Farrar — practiced on the new Field Turf at Martin Stadium for the first time this season following two weeks in Lewiston.

“It feels awesome. It’s awesome to be able to breathe Pullman air again,” said Coen (pictured above). “It was really smoky (in Lewiston), but it’s good to sleep in my own bed again.”

He also took a moment to admire the new facade that now rings the sideline walls.

“I love it. The bricks are awesome. I think they’re still working on some other stuff but the stadium is looking beautiful, so I’m really happy for that.”

His comments were echoed by sophomore center Riley Sorenson. “… it’s a great feeling (to be back). We do love Lewiston and all the team bonding there is great, but Pullman’s home,” Sorenson said. “It’s great to be back.”

Sorenson continued to work with the first-team offensive line Friday. At this point, it looks like the starting center job is his to lose following a tight battle with third-year sophomore Sam Flor in spring ball.

“It’s close, it’s close,” head coach Mike Leach said of their fight to succeed Elliott Bosch. “Riley’s been playing real well lately. It’s close though.”

Flor has been taking the second-team reps for almost the entire camp, while Sorenson has enjoyed the majority of reps with Connor Halliday and the first team.

But his rope may be short.

When Sorenson struggled with his snaps in the Indoor Practice Facility the other day, Flor took over on the first team for the rest of the practice. Sorenson, by contrast, had to do conditioning drills for the remainder of the day.

“Sam’s been nipping at my heels, and I’ve been nipping at his heels the whole time so we’ve been pushing each other,” Sorenson said. “For me to slip up like that, it’s not something that strikes confidence with myself, the coaches, and everything, so I had to get that fixed real quick.”

ON THE PRACTICE FIELD FRIDAY, two separate 11-on-11 sessions were conducted on either side of the field, with the scout team offenses working with the first- and second-team defenses, and the scout defenses working with the first- and second-team offenses.

Among the highlights, second-team freshman corner Marcellus Pippins intercepted a pass from Peyton Bender; standout junior linebacker Darryl Monroe picked off a pass from Connor Ennis; and Dom Williams made a nice grab of a Halliday pass for a 10-yard score.

The only true excitement came during on-sides kick drills. Each time a player fielded one of the Erik Powell or Quentin Breshears kicks cleanly a chorus of hoots and hollers would break out.


  • CB Charleston White was not at practice, but Leach said he is in good standing with the team. Fellow CB Sebastian LaRue has not been to practice since last week. Leach said he is dealing family matter.

  • Freshman DB Jeff Farrar practiced for the first time since signing a financial aid agreement with WSU. Leach said some paperwork still needs to be sorted through but that he's fully on board and the team is excited to have him. Farrar signed with Virginia on LOI Day, choosing the Cavs over WSU and more than a dozen other offers, but he ran into hurdles with UVa’s entrance requirements and was granted his release. He played safety and receiver in high school but figures to get his first shot in Pullman at cornerback.

  • The defense had to do a series of up-downs at the end of practice, but Leach didn’t offer the reason why.

    Primarily taking reps with the 1’s
    QB: Connor Halliday
    RB: Theron West, Jamal Morrow
    X: Vince Mayle, Dom Williams
    Y: River Cracraft
    H: Rickey Galvin
    Z: Isiah Myers
    LT: Joe Dahl
    LG: Gunnar Eklund
    C: Riley Sorenson
    RG: Eduardo Middleton
    RT: Cole Madison

    E: Destiny Vaeao
    NT: Kalafitoni Pole
    T: Xavier Cooper
    BUCK: Kache Palacio
    WILL: Tana Pritchard
    SAM: Cyrus Coen
    MIKE: Darryl Monroe
    CB: Daquawn Brown
    CB: Tracy Clark
    FS: Taylor Taliulu
    SS: Darius Lemora

      Primarily taking reps with the 2’s
    QB: Luke Falk
    RB: Gerard Wicks
    X: Drew Loftus
    Y: River Cracraft
    H: Calvin Green
    Z: Kristoff Williams
    LT: Devonte McClain
    LG: Sean Krepsz
    C: Sam Flor
    RG: B.J. Salmonson
    RT: Jacob Seydel

    E: Darryl Paulo
    NT: Daniel Ekuale
    T: Robert Barber
    BUCK: Ivan McLennan
    WILL: Chester Sua
    SAM: Paris Taylor
    MIKE: Jeremiah Allison
    CB: Marcellus Pippins, Kevin Griffin
    CB: Patrick Porter
    FS: Sulaiman Hameed
    SS: Beau Glover

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