Washington State’s defense continues to fly around and took advantage of some spotty play from the offense

PULLMAN -- Washington State’s defense knows how to bounce back. After giving up lots of completions in the one-on-one drill pitting the receivers against the defensive backs a day earlier, the defense wasn’t going to let the offense have much success Wednesday. The defensive 1s and 2s outplayed their offensive counterparts in two drills together.

On the day, Shalom Luani and Jeremiah Allison each had one interception and Parker Henry had two picks including a great one-handed tip to himself.

Treshon Broughton was a nuisance for the offense causing three pass breakups throughout the skeleton drill. All three came with John Thompson as the receiver, the first two against Luke Falk and the last one against Peyton Bender.

Also during the skeleton drill, Marcellus Pippins and Charleston White picked off Luke Falk and Kirkland Parker intercepted Peyton Bender.

On Pippins’ INT, he just outleaped the receiver on a Falk overthrow. On the White pick, Falk tried to muscle it into Thompson, but Broughton’s second pass defensed ended up in White’s hands after it shot into the air for 3 to 4 seconds.

Falk finished 6 of 10 for 40 yards and the two interceptions in the first part of the skeleton drill. All of these plays started at the 30-yard line.

Bender subbed into the skeleton three plays after Falk’s second pick and had decent success. The second-year freshman QB threw to John Thompson, but Broughton swatted the ball and Frankie Luvu nearly picked it off.

Bender settled down and hit Jamal Morrow for a 15-yard TD.

For the last four plays of Bender’s time, the offense moved up to the 3-yard line, where Bender hit Thompson, Morrow and Dom Williams for TDs. Parker fought off Williams for an interception in the back of the end zone.

Bender finished 8 of 10 for 42 yards, four TDs (three from within the 5-yard line) and one interception. Bender’s plays started at the 15-yard line and progressively moved forward a few yards each play.

Falk returned and the offense moved to the 11-yard line with the end zone at his back. After going 6 for 10 in his first stint, Falk responded going 9 for 10 in his final sequence.

He hit two deep throws, one to John Thompson for 34 yards and one to Jamal Morrow for 20 yards. Falk finished the second half of the drill with 103 yards passing.

The one incompletion looked like a communication breakdown between Falk and Priester, who ran a shorter route than Falk expected and the ball sailed over his head.

Overall in the skeleton drill, Falk finished 15 for 20 with 143 yards and the two early interceptions.

The offense did three up-downs after the skeleton concluded, presumably because of the three interceptions.

Finally, the 1s and 2s battled for five plays.

Bender showed perfect touch on his first throw on a 23-yard pass to Daniel Lilienthal. The ball flew over three defenders, but landed in front of two as Lilienthal found the soft spot in the D.

For the rest of the team time, Bender had two short completions and a 12-yard throw to John Thompson.

Kache Palacio and Frankie Luvu collapsed the pocket on one attempt, resulting in a Palacio sack. Bender finished the short team time by completing 4 of 5 passes for 69 yards and the sack.

Notable Notes:

- Mike Leach did not talk with media after practice.

-The defense had pretty good success against the scout team, which is to be expected.

-Allison also had a forced fumble against QB Connor Ennis and Peyton Pelluer recovered the ball.

-Broughton continued to wreak havoc against the scouts when he dove, on a simulated third-and-12, and broke up the completion from Tyler Hilinski.

-Killian Page fumbled the ball and Daniel Ekuale recovered. The fumble was not the result of a strip as Page just coughed up the ball.

-Gabe Marks had a few great grabs on well-placed throws from Falk against the scout defense.

-The offense as a whole struggled in the red zone with at least five missed completions that would have been touchdowns.The offense did 25 up-downs after that.

-Falk also was picked off by Greg Hoyd III on the first play of his final drill against the scouts. Following the final drill, the entire offense did four up-downs but the o-line ended up doing 11 (seven more up-downs than the other members of the offense) to close practice.

-Kicker Brett Schafer went 4 for 5 as his only miss was his longest.

-Special teams worked on punting. The punt team worked on a blocking specific drill and tracked down the returner drill before coming together for a full punt versus scout team returners drill.

-Later in practice, the return team worked on blocking for the returner in a few stages before coming together for their full drill against the scout punt team. The main drill for punt return was the gunners and their blocking scheme.


NOTE: As was noted Tuesday: If you’re wondering why our customary listing of the first string offense and defense has gone missing, WSU has made it clear all interview access to coaches and players will be denied if we continue to publish who is running with the 1s. Previously, WSU informed CF.C and other media two weeks ago that interview access to defensive coaches would be cut off unless we refrained in our practice reports from noting which players were limited in their participation. As much as we know readers enjoy the practice listings of the 1s, we don't believe the broader context of our practice reporting will be compromised if we refrain from it and that the alternative -- not being able to talk with Leach, Alex Grinch and others -- would be a far greater sacrifice to you, our loyal readers.

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