Seen & Heard on Planet Coug

JUST-GRADUATED Washington State women’s basketball star Tia Presley wasn’t drafted or offered a free-agent tryout by the WNBA, but the high-scoring guard is entertaining pro offers from teams in Europe, WSU’s sports information department tells

Regardless which club she decides to sign with, the Spokane product will be heading overseas in September or October. Presley was a three-time All-Pac-12 honoree at WSU and scored the third-most points — 1,541 points — in school history.

IN A SMALL TRIBUTE TO beloved former WSU president Elson Floyd, over the weekend added a new category to the line up of icons that its message board posters can achieve through the frequency of their posts. Now sitting in between the Mel Hein and Lone Star Dietz levels is the "Elson Floyd Club," which message boarders will join when their career posts total between 7,000 and 9,999. This marks CF.C's first addition to the icon line up since the Rueben Mayes Club was put in place at the 3,000-post level following the legendary running back's 2008 induction into the College Football Hall of Fame.

GLOBE-TROTTING COUG Taylor Rochestie will spend his seventh season of pro basketball playing in his seventh country. Israel powerhouse Maccabi Tel Aviv confirmed previous media reports that Rochestie has signed as a free agent after two stellar seasons in Russia. Rochestie has also played for teams in Turkey, Germany, France, Italy and Montenegro. Rochestie led the Euroleague with 18.9 points per game this season.

Marcus Moore, another old Cougar guard, played in Israel this season, averaging 17.6 points for Elitzur Ashekelon. Moore will turn 35 on Christmas Day. Another old Coug who continues to play in Europe is Thomas Kelati. The swingman from Walla Walla recently signed up for another season with UCAM Murcia in Spain’s top league. Kelati, who turns 33 in September, averaged 6.7 points as a reserve this season.

Meanwhile, veteran China Basketball Association standout Josh Akognon made honorable mention all-league this season. The 3-point gunner, who played two seasons at WSU and two at Cal State Fullerton, was the CBA’s fifth-leading scorer with 31.9 points per game for Foshan.

FORMER COUGAR LINEBACKER Alex Hoffman-Ellis is back for a second season with the British Columbia Lions of the Canadian Football League. However, running back-wide receiver Rickey Galvin from WSU was one of the final cuts by the Lions.

Galvin was a rookie free agent. The Lions, coached by former California Bears coach Jeff Tedford, open the season July 4 at Ottawa. Ottawa’s offensive line coach is former WSU center Bryan Chiu, who was a longtime star in the CFL.

JUNIOR JORDAN WATSON HAS become the fifth Cougar to be named a first-team All-American in women’s rowing. Watson, a native of Victoria, B.C., helped the Cougars take eighth at the NCAA Championships.

Nicole Hare, another Canadian (Calgary) junior on the Cougars, made the All-America second team. For the second straight year, Watson and Hare were named National Scholar-Athletes and made the All-Academic first team in the Pac-12 Conference.

FORMER WALK ON QB JESSE BROWN never threw a pass in three years at Washington State, but he’s found immediate success as a member of the Montana State rodeo team.

Brown placed fifth in steer wrestling Saturday night at the College National Finals Rodeo in Casper, Wyo. Brown grew up in a rodeo family in Baker City, Ore., but this was his first full season of rodeo. He was the Big Sky Region champion. The Casper Star-Tribune newspaper featured Brown in this recent article.

COUGAR PITCHING STANDOUT Joe Pistorese has been reunited with his batterymate, P.J. Jones, on the Seattle Mariners’ farm club in Everett.

Pistorese, like many college players who see extensive playing time leading up to the June draft, was granted permission to report late to the AquaSox. Jones made his pro debut Friday in Everett’s second game, going 1-for-4 with a run-scoring double as the designated hitter in a 7-5 loss to Eugene.

Junior pitcher Matt Bower, the only non-senior among the five Cougars drafted by Major League teams this month, remains the only one of the five who has yet to sign. Bower was drafted by Houston in the 23rd round.

FORMER WSU BASEBALL PLAYERS Kyle Johnson, Tanner Chleborad and Taylor Williams are all squirming their way through extensive time on the disabled list in the minor leagues.

Johnson, a Mets farmhand who was batting .238 in 22 games with Las Vegas in the Triple-A Pacific Coast League, hasn’t played since late May. Chleborad, a Baltimore farmhand, was shelved with a bad arm after pitching one game in the Class A South Atlantic League. Williams, a highly regarded pitcher in the Milwaukee farm system, hasn’t pitched all season due to arm trouble.

The hard-throwing Williams struggled in his only season at WSU, but he wound up being drafted in the fourth round out of Kent State in 2013. He played in the Class A Midwest League All-Star Game last year and pitched in a major league exhibition game with the Brewers this spring. “You might have the best stuff of any pitcher in camp,” Milwaukee slugger Ryan Braun told Williams during spring training.

JON WILNER OF THE MERCURY NEWS in San Jose has written this interesting and straight-forward summary of the Pac-12’s plan to offer member schools in-house handling of multi-media rights. While the opportunity won’t be one that WSU can consider for several years given its current contract with IMG, the idea and potential financial implications are intriguing

Wilner opines that the benefits of the plan that the Pac-12 is touting may fall on skeptical ears. He writes, “The conference office has a credibility issue on many of the campuses because its other major in-house project, the Pac-12 Networks, have under-performed significantly” with just 11 million subscribers and $1 million per school per year in income.

Cougfan Top Stories