WSU SOCCER: Cougs fall late (again) Oct. 23, 8:00 PM
It seems like so many games on the pitch have slipped away from the Cougs of late. Sunday offered more of the season. UCLA scored in the 77th minute to break a 1-1 tie and gave No. 12 UCLA a 2-1 victory over Washington State in Los Angeles. The Cougars (6-9-1, 1-7-0 Pac-12) played from behind for much of the game after conceding a goal in the 18th minute. Kelsee Crenshaw found Alysha Overland in a crowded box for the first WSU goal in the last three games. WSU returns to Lower Soccer Field Thursday when it hosts Oregon State at 7 p.m. The match will be televised by the Pac-12 Network.
KLAY THOMPSON IN TOP 20 Oct. 23, 12:30 AM
Old Cougar Klay Thompson is ranked the 19th-best player in the NBA by Sports Illustrated in its new list of the top 100 in the league. LeBron James is No. 1, followed by two of Thompson's Golden State Warrior teammates: Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry.
CINDY BRUNSON LOVES HER COUGS Oct. 22, 7: 31 PM
Murrow College grad and Pac-12 Networks sideline reporter Cindy Brunson was unabashed Saturday in what she thinks of her alma mater's football team this season. In an informal Pac-12 Midseason Awards segment with colleagues Yogi Roth and Ted Robinson, her choice for defensive player of the year was WSU's Hercules Mata'afa. Her choice for best position group in the conference? WSU's offensive line. And her choice for coach of the midseason? Mike Leach of course.
MANDEL MAKES IT 3 ALL-AMERICA TEAMS FOR O'CONNELL Oct. 20, 9:31 AM
Washington State's Cody O'Connell has been named to his third midseason All-America team, with longtime college football writer Stewart Mandel placing the Cougar left guard on his best-of-the-best listing.
"When it comes to this group, I defer to people who evaluate O-linemen for a living. Pro Football Focus has ... O’Connell its top-rated guard," writes Mandel of Fox Sports. For Mandel's All-America team, CLICK HERE.
O'CONNELL WITH ANOTHER ALL-AMERICA SELECTION Oct. 20, 8:35 AM
Washington State left guard Cody O'Connell was named to Fox scribe Bruce Feldman's midseason All-America team on Thursday.
"The mammoth 6-foot-8, 350-pound junior, a first-year starter, has been a big reason why the Cougars have a much-improved run game (WSU has already run for twice as many TDs as it had all of 2015). He has graded out by Pro Football Focus as the nation’s No. 1 guard," writes Feldman, who co-authored Mike Leach's book, Swing Your Sword.
O'Connell was named to CBS Sports' midseason All-America team earlier this week. For Feldman's All-America team, CLICK HERE.
CTE TOO CLOSE TO HOME Oct. 19, 12:50 PM
This is one national list the Pac-12 and its fans do NOT want to be on. Former players from more than 100 college football programs have been diagnosed with Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) according to the Concussion Legacy Foundation. In the Pac-12, players from USC (4); UCLA (3) and Washington (3) are among the top 15 schools. You can find the full article HERE.
ASU's GRAHAM CALLS LEACH COMMENTS "RIDICULOUS" Oct. 18, 9:34 PM
Arizona State coach Todd Graham on Tuesday called Mike Leach's comments on the Sun Devils' stealing of signals during the game "ridiculous."
"Make this perfectly clear: We do everything exactly by the rules. Period. Obviously, we take a great deal of pride in the integrity that our program has. I'll just leave it at that. I'm not going to get involved in things like that that are ridiculous. We're very open and honest about how we do things," said Graham, according to azcentral.com.
On Monday, Leach strongly implied ASU was breaking rules in regard to signal stealing, at one point referring to a Sun Devil "command center" and saying there should be an investigation by the Pac-12. This marks the second consecutive season there have been objections pointed towards Graham and ASU by other Pac-12 schools. Last year, Utah, Oregon and WSU all complained about ASU's signal stealing tactics. And Washington, like Oregon, went to extreme lengths in 2015 to shield their signals with curtains.
Signal stealing is legal per the NCAA as long as audio and video equipment are not employed.
WILNER'S MIDSEASON PAC-12 TEAM: ONLY ONE COUG Oct. 18, 11:29 AM
Washington State DE Hercules Mata'afa is the only Cougar listed on the midseason Pac-12 team of Mercury News scribe Jon Wilner. You can see the full team here.
WSU BASEBALL SCHEDULE RELEASED Oct. 18, 10:55 PM
Cougar baseball in 2017 will feature three nonconference home series and five Pac-12 Conference series at Bailey-Brayton Field, WSU SID announced. The nonconference schedule is set but the Pac-12 slate is expected to see a couple date changes once TV selections are made in the coming weeks. All game times are subject to change. The Cougars open the season with a pair of road matchups during the final two weekends of February beginning with a four-game series at Sacramento State (Feb. 17-20) and another four-game swing with Loyola Marymount (Feb. 24-27) in Los Angeles.
Washington State then returns to Pullman for an eight-game homestand, hosting Stephen F. Austin (March 3-5) and Utah Valley March 9-12. The Cougs will open Pac-12 play at USC (March 17-19).
For the full schedule:2017 Baseball.pdf.
ESPN PREDICTS 3 DIFFERENT WSU BOWL SCENARIOS Oct. 17, 12:02 PM
ESPN has the bases covered when it comes to predicting Washington State and bowl games, with 3 analysts from The Worldwide Leader projecting Wazzu into three different bowls.
Following Wazzu's win over UCLA, David Lombardi predicts the Cougs will go to the Alamo Bowl. Mark Schlabach sees the Cougs in the Holiday Bowl (against Penn State). Meanwhile, Brett McMurphy predicts the Cougs will go to the Rose Bowl and face Michigan.
The Pac-12 bowl selection order after the CFB playoff: Rose, Alamo, Holiday, Foster Farms, Sun, Las Vegas, Cactus, At-large bids.
ROSEN WATCH Oct. 14, 12:02 PM
There remains no definitive word on whether Bruin QB Josh Rosen will play when WSU plays host to UCLA Saturday (7:30 pm, ESPN). On Wednesday, reports out of Los Angeles were that backup QB Mike Fafaul took all the snaps in practice while Rosen received treatment.
Rosen twice left Saturday's game at ASU due to separate injuries. He injured his right leg early, and appeared to injure his throwing arm (tough to tell if it was his wrist, shoulder or something else) at game's end. Fauful, a former walk on whose last name is pronounced FAY-ful, was 3 for 11 for 44 yards with two interceptions in Tempe.
MATCHUP BATTLE: HERCULES MATA'AFA vs. BRUIN OTs Oct. 12, 1:39 PM
Campus Insiders sees the battle between Cougar DE Hercules Mata'afa's and the UCLA offensive tackles as crucial to who comes out on top Saturday night when the Cougs host the Bruins (7:30 pm, ESPN). Here's what CU had to say in its 10 best CFB head-to-head matchup battles this weekend:
Washington State DE Hercules Mata’afa vs. UCLA OTs Conor McDermott and Andre James
Protect the franchise. Yeah, not happening in Westwood. Josh Rosen is struggling, in large part because of a lack of support from his blockers and receivers. Rosen was treated like a piñata last week by Arizona State, and Saturday’s trip to the Palouse won’t be any easier if he receives a medical thumbs up. The Wazzu D has dialed up the pressure and intensity the past few weeks, spearheaded by Mata’afa off the edge. The sophomore is the complete package, strong enough to defend the run, with the quickness, technique and motor to blow up plays in opposing backfields.
UPDATED TICKET COUNT: SLOW GOING FOR COUGAR NATION Oct. 12, 1:39 PM
It's starting to look like Cougar Nation won't sell out Martin for the homecoming game vs. UCLA. The ticket office remained quiet as of Wednesday afternoon, with SID Bill Stevens telling Cougfan.comon there has been very little change from yesterday in sales, with just over 2,000 tickets remaining. Related story: CLICK HERE.
ROSEN WATCH: DID UCLA JUST TIP ITS HAND? Oct. 12, 12:00 PM
Officially, UCLA QB Josh Rosen's status remains up in the air. Unofficially, well ...
Bruin LT Conor McDermott, backup QB Mike Fafaul's roommate, said on Wednesday Fafaul has been taking every rep in practice this week. Bruin head man Jim Mora on Wednesday said the coaching staff will do what makes sense both short- and long-term in deciding whether to play Rosen. You never know when a coach is playing possum with injury information but on paper, assuming Mora is playing it straight, Fafaul just might be the guy under center when the Cougs host the Bruins on Saturday (7:30 pm, ESPN).
"Not only Josh but our medical team is outstanding and his dad's a doctor," Mora told reporters on Wednesday. "So we've got him surrounded by people who understand what's going on and I think at the end of the day you help him make the best decision for him, but you let him make the right decision. If it's safe. We're not going to let him make a decision that puts himself in further jeopardy."
Rosen twice left Saturday's game at ASU due to separate injuries -- late in the first half due to an issue with his right leg, and he appeared to injure his throwing arm (tough to tell if it was his wrist, shoulder or something else) at the end of the game. He was down a long time, and later on the sideline was holding his arm closely against his body. Fauful, a former walk on whose last name is pronounced FAY-ful, was 3 for 11 for 44 yards and two interceptions coming off the bench in Tempe.
"When he's been in here in practice, he's done a nice job," Mora said of Fauful. "It's always harder for a backup to go in a game during the game because he hasn't gotten as many reps. Mike's gotten more reps than he typically would and so I think that builds confidence going into a game."
ESPN WRITER PROJECTS COUGS IN ROSE BOWL vs. MICHIGAN Oct. 9, 5:26 PM
Wonder if they would consider start the game with 60:02 on the clock in an effort to make whole again The Year of 1998 ... ESPN writer Brett McMurphy projects Washington State to land in the Rose Bowl on Jan. 2, 2017 vs. Michigan. You can see the full list of bowl game predictions by ESPN's McMurphy and Mark Schlabach here. (Schlabach, by the way, predicts WSU will face Penn State in the Holiday Bowl).
GOAL IN DOUBLE-OT LIFTS COUGS TO WIN Oct. 9, 4:21 PM
Morgan Weaver’s goal six minutes into the second overtime propelled Washington State to a come-from-behind 2-1, victory over Arizona State on Sunday at Lower Soccer Field. The Cougars (6-6-1, 1-4 Pac-12) dominated play after halftime, pounding the Arizona State (6-5-2, 1-3-1 Pac-12) defense, finishing with a 30-6 advantage in shots, including 14 on goal. The Cougars are next in action Friday when they travel to Salt Lake City to face Utah. The match is slated for a 6 p.m. PT start.
WALK ON QB NO LONGER WITH THE PROGRAM Oct. 7, 11:11 AM
Bryce Missey, a true freshman walk on QB out of Spanaway's Bethel High and former second-team all-league signal caller from the SPSL, has left the program, WSU SID confirmed to Cougfan.com. Missey as a walk on was the Cougs' only QB in the 2016 class before Anthony Gordon signed financial aid papers late in the process in May.
COUGS STILL LOOKING FOR FIRST PAC-12 WIN Oct. 6, 9:39 PM
Washington State remained winless in Pac-12 play out on the pitch, dropping a 2-0 decision to Arizona Thursday evening at Lower Soccer Field. The Cougars are next in action Sunday when they play host to Arizona State at 11 a.m. The match will be televised by the Pac-12 Network.
WSU SOCCER LIVE STREAM ON TWITTER Oct. 4, 2:37 PM
The Cougar soccer team's match vs.Utah on Oct. 14 will be live streamed on twitter. Yes, twitter. The Pac-12 Networks announced Tuesday that nine Pac-12 events will be streamed on Twitter Oct. 6 - Nov. 12, including the Cougs' soccer match. The nine events are the first in a season-long partnership to stream Pac-12 events on Twitter’s new live content platform.
ALLISON AND VAEAO ON HAND FOR DUCK HUNT Oct. 3, 2:45 PM
A pair of Washington State alums were on the sideline in Pullman this past weekend, with LB Jeremiah Allison and DT Destiny Vaeao taking in the Cougs' 51-33 dismantling of the Ducks.
WSU's TAYLOR MIMS PAC-12 POW Oct. 3, 2:15 PM
Washington State's Taylor Mims was named the Pac-12 Volleyball Offensive Player of the Week on Monday. In the win over No. 9 Stanford, Mims, a sophomore middle blocker from Billings, Mont., had 13 kills with only one error in 26 attacks for a .462 hitting percentage, a 3.9 points per set average, served one ace and tallied eight blocks. In the 3-0 win over California Sunday, Mims had eight kills, hit .357, served one ace and had five blocks.
The Cougars jumped seven spots and are now ranked No. 10 in the AVCA Coaches Top 25 poll, following a trio of consecutive upset wins against No. 4 Washington, No.9 UCLA and No. 9 Stanford.
This is Mims' first Pac-12 honor and the 24th all-time for WSU. No. 10 Washington State (14-2, 4-0 Pac-12) travels to Oregon State -- and co-Pac-12 leading No. 20 Oregon -- this Friday and Sunday, respectively.
SUPREME COURT DENIES NCAA APPEAL Oct. 3, 9:44 AM
The Supreme Court denied the NCAA's appeal on Monday, affirming earlier court rulings that said the amateurism rules for college basketball and football players violated federal antitrust law. The class-action lawsuit was originally filed by former UCLA basketball star Ed O'Bannon and other athletes. The court also rejected O'Bannon's separate appeal that called on the justices to reinstate a plan to pay football and basketball players. The end effect of the high-court action is to leave the NCAA vulnerable to more legal challenges that are working their way through the courts.
OLD COUG MICHAEL BUMPUS: SEAHAWKS PREP COACH OF THE WEEK Sept. 29, 10:02 AM
Michael Bumpus was recently honored by the Seattle Seahawks as one of its High School Coach of the Week winners. Bumpus' Monroe High Bearcats are 5-0 and atop the WESCO 4-A standings with Lake Stevens. Bumpus' troops used a stingy defense and explosive offense in a 52-7 win over Cascade in Week Four, and demolished Glacier Peak 64-6 last night.
Each week during the high school football season, the Washington State Football Coaches Association selects two high school football coaches as the Coach of the Week winners. Each recipient receives a $500 grant from the NFL towards their football program. At the conclusion of the high school season one coach is selected as the NFL High School Coach of the Year for the state of Washington. The NFL High School Coach of the Year receives a $2,000 grant.
SOCCER: COUGS OFFER LATE DRAMA, LAST TRY SAILS HIGH Oct. 1, 10:02 AM
WSU made things interesting at the end vs. No. 1 Stanford out on the pitch Thursday night. But the Cardinal's pair of second half goals were enough and WSU fell 2-1 on the road. Morgan Weaver cut the lead in half in the 89th minute. And the Cougars had another look that would have tied things up but Kaitlyn Johnson’s shot in the 90th minute sailed above the crossbar.
For the game the Cougars outshot the Cardinal 14-10, and held a 6-3 advantage in corner kicks. The Cougars fell to 5-4-1, 0-2 in Pac-12 play. The Cardinal improved to 9-0-1, 2-0.
No. 17 WSU takes on Stanford on Friday Sept. 29, 10:02 AM
WSU's surging volleyball team (12-2, 2-0 Pac-12) play No. 9 Stanford (8-2, 2-0) on Friday at 7 p.m. in Bohler. The match will be televised on Pac-12 Network. The Cougs are coming off upset wins at No. 4 Washington and No. 9 UCLA and made their debut in the AVCA Coaches Top 25 Poll at No. 17.
WSU WOMEN'S GOLF WITH A SOLID FINISH Sept. 29, 7:02 AM
Washington State women’s golf team tied for fourth and junior Alivia Brown finished second at the Golfweek Conference Challenge, Wednesday, at Red Sky Golf Club.
ERNIE KENT HEADS BACK TO THE NARROWS LEAGUE Sept. 24, 11:45 PM
Washington State has offered a scholarship to Timberline High/Olympia junior Erik Stevenson, the shooting guard tweeted today. As a sophomore this past season he was named first-team all-Narrows League. That's the same league that sent current Cougar freshman (and likely starter) Malachi Flynn of Tacoma to WSU.
Stevenson has three other scholarship offers, according to the Olympian newspaper. They are from Wichita State, Old Dominion and Cal Poly. He is rated 3 stars by Scout.com. He averaged 17.6 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals per game last season.
Stevenson is the third-known prospect in the 2018 recruiting cycle with a WSU offer. The others are forward Miles Norris of La Mesa, Calif., and guard Jon Kabongo of Huntington, WV.
The Cougars also recently offered 6-8 post man Kenneth Wooten, a 2017 prospect, who just received a release from the letter of intent he signed with Nevada. He would have been a freshman for the Wolfpack this season but instead is headed to a prep school and has reclassified for the 2017 recruiting cycle. He already has offers from a dozen schools. Wooten can sign with a new team as soon as Nov. 9. That's when the one-week-long early signing period begins for the 2017 class.
RYAN LEAF TO HOST WEEKLY RADIO SHOW Sept. 24, 8:55 AM
Former WSU Rose Bowl quarterback and one-time Cougfan.com columnist Ryan Leaf will host a weekly show on SB Nation Radio, the organization announced today. "The Ryan Leaf Show" will air every Saturday from 5-7 pm Pacific time.
The former Heisman Trophy finalist will talk about life on an off the field, including the challenges of overcoming addiction. Leaf, whose woes with prescription painkillers landed him in prison for a stretch, is now a guidance counselor in Los Angeles working with teens and former athletes who are trying to overcome addiction.
COUG VOLLEYBALL PULLS OFF ANOTHER UPSET Sept. 24, 8:30 AM
The Washington State volleyball team is now 12-2 overall and 2-0 in Pac-12 play after knocking off No. 9-ranked UCLA at Pauley Pavilion on Friday. Kyra "The Serial Killer" Holt led WSU with 18 kills, 7 digs and one ace.
The victory was WSU's first over the Bruins since 2002 and first in Pauley since 1997 when head coach Jen Stinson Greeny and assistant coach Shannon Wyckoff Hunt were starters. This also marked WSU's second defeat of a top 10 team this week. On Wednesday, the Cougs downs No. 4 UW. The Cougs return to Pullman next weekend to face Stanford and Cal.
'GLEASON' FILM COMING TO DIGITAL AND DVD Sept. 23, 6:30 PM
"One of this year’s finest films, the heartbreaking and uplifting documentary 'Gleason', hits DVD November 1 and digital October 25 via Sony Pictures Home Entertainment," reports HollywoodOutbreak.com. The film chronicles former WSU and New Orleans Saints standout Steve Gleason's journey since being diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease) in 2011. 'Gleason" is widely considered a front runner for an Oscar. To learn more about this incredible story, click here.
WSU-CMU REPORTEDLY CANCEL FOOTBALL HOME-&-HOME Sept. 23, 9:48 AM
Washington State and Central Michigan have cancelled their home-and-home series planned for 2019 and 2021, according to a tweet by FBschedules.com. "No reason stated, contract mutually terminated," said FBS.
Here's what WSU's remaining contracted non-conference slate looks like over the coming years:
2017: Sept. 2 Nevada; Sept. 9 Boise State; Sept. 16 Montana State
2018: Sept. 1 at Wyoming; Sept. 8 San Jose State; Sept. 15 Eastern Washington
2022: at Wisconsin
BUCANNON PREACHES VIRTUE OF FLAG FOOTBALL Sept. 22, 8:00 AM
Former WSU All-American and current Arizona Cardinals standout Deone Bucannon is quoted in this interesting Sports Illustrated story about a town that replaced its tackle youth football program with flag football for safety reasons.
“I would recommend that all young kids play flag first, so they can get an idea of how to play the game without worrying about the physical part,” the article quotes Bucannon, who is widely considered one of the hardest hitters in WSU history.
KYRA HOLT MOVES INTO LEGENDARY STATUS Sept. 21, 11:59 PM
WSU senior Kyra Holt, whose 21 kills and 14 digs Wednesday led the Cougar volleyball team to a big win over No. 4 Washington, is now fourth on WSU's all-time career kills list with 1,464. And her 1,000 career digs places her in the all-time top 10 in that category. Only four others in WSU history have eclipsed the 1,000 mark in both kills and digs. The 11-2 Cougars hit the road at UCLA tonight and then return home next weekend for matches with Stanford and Cal.
"It feels amazing. I have no words to express how this win feels," Holt said after the Cougars beat UW in Seattle for the first time since 2001. "We kept working in practice and pushing each other to new levels. We have a belief in the team and a connection with everyone. It's awesome."
COACH LEES DIDN'T HAVE TO LOOK FAR FOR THIS RECRUIT Sept. 21, 11:00 PM
DESTINY IN PHILLY LOOKING LIKE FATE, SAYS COLUMNIST Sept. 22, 9:48 AM
Destiny Vaeao's forced fumble this past week continues to reverberate around Philadelphia.
"As fate - that word again - would have it, the Eagles had added Phillip Daniels as their assistant defensive line coach in the offseason, and Daniels played three seasons with Joe Salave'a when both were with the Washington Redskins," writes Philadelphia Inquirer columnist Bob Ford. Thr connection led to Vaeao's chance. But ...
"It wasn't much of a chance, really, because the Eagles had also signed former Tennessee Titans tackle Mike Martin to provide depth behind Fletcher Cox, Bennie Logan and Beau Allen. But when Martin injured his knee during training camp and was released, well, you pick the word, whatever it was, Vaeao was getting his chance... Going from Pago Pago to Pullman to Philadelphia isn't a straight line. There has to be some luck along the way, some coincidences and simple twists of fate. Not everything is destined, not even for Destiny Vaeao. Or is it?" For the full article, CLICK HERE.
DECISION TO FILE CHARGES OR NOT COULD TAKE MONTHS Sept. 21, 11:00 AM
Whitman County Prosecutor Denis Tracy said the process of deciding whether or not to prosecute the four members of the WSU football team facing felony charges could take several months, according to the Moscow-Pullman Daily News. That would mean the players could play out the entire season before learning their fates. Pullman police forwarded on their recommendation for charges this week.
DL Robert Barber and T.J. Fehoko were arrested last week for their alleged involvement in a fight at a July party. Rush Logan Tago was recently arrested for robbery and assualt, safety Shalom Luani was arrested before the season for assault. Barber was expelled by the student conduct board. Barber is appealing the decision and remains in school.
USA TODAY RE-RANK NOT IMPRESSED WITH WSU WIN Sept. 19, 10:00 AM
Washington State didn't allow Idaho a TD on Saturday and beat the Vandals by 50 points. Color USA Today unimpressed. In its weekly re-rank of all 128 FBS teams, USA Today moved WSU up just one spot this week, to No. 72, after the W. The Cougs ended the 2015 season No. 26 on USA Today's re-rank list. WSU dropped 28 spots to start the 2016 season, at No. 54. The Cougs then fell 14 spots after the loss to Eastern and another five rungs after the loss to Boise State.
MASTRO'S GUYS LIVE IN THE END ZONE Sept. 18, 12:45 PM
Washington State has scored 18 TDs in its first three games. The Cougars’ running backs coach, Jim Mastro, has had a hand in nearly all of ‘em. Seven of eight TDs scored on Saturday vs. Idaho -- and 16 of the 18 TDs scored this season by the Cougs -- have involved players coached or recruited by Mastro.
COUGS LOOK TO REVERSE USA TODAY RE-RANK Sept. 17, 6:50 AM
USA Today re-ranks all 128 teams after each week of the season. Washington State sits at No. 73 headed into its third game of the season Saturday vs. Idaho. The Cougs ended the 2015 season No. 26 on USA Today's re-rank list. WSU dropped 28 spots to start the 2016 season, at No. 54. The Cougs then fell 14 spots after the loss to Eastern and another five rungs after the loss to Boise State.
NEW WSU HOOPS COORDINATOR A FAMILIAR FACE Sept. 15, 7:32 AM
Tim Marrion is returning to Washington State for the third time, Ernie Kent announced Wednesday, as the men’s basketball coordinator of operations. Marrion served under Ken Bone as director of player development from 2013-14 and coordinator of operations from 2009-12. Marrion will replace Mike Simonson, who spent the past four seasons at WSU. Simonson is joining the women’s basketball coaching staff at Seattle Pacific as an assistant coach.
Marrion was the associate head coach at Clark College in Vancouver during the 2014-15 season where he had a hand in recruiting, player development and game planning. He was most recently the basketball operations coordinator at Idaho, during the 2015-16 season. Marrion during his career has also served as an assistant coach at San Jose State, responsible for coaching the defense and point guards, evaluation and recruiting, and scouting opponents. Marrion received his bachelor’s degree in sport management with a minor in leadership studies from Washington State in three years, graduating in 2006. He earned his master’s degree in sports leadership from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh.
COUGS MAKE USA TODAY’S 0-2 LIST Sept. 14, 9:37 AM
It’s a list the Cougs never thought they’d find themselves on two games into the 2016 season. USA Today published "College football's 0-2 teams that have the best chance to end the O-fer," and WSU is among 11 teams mentioned. "The Cougars’ two losses are, if not excusable, at least explainable. It doesn’t mean, of course, that coach Mike Leach is happy about it. They’ll likely score enough points this week on their home turf to get by Idaho," writes Eddie Timanus. For the full article, click here.
COUGAR DL COACH JOE SALAVE'A AMONG HOF FINALISTS Sept. 12, 8:15 AM
Joe Salave'a is one of 18 finalists on the ballot selected from over 200 nominees for induction into the Polynesian Football Hall of Fame Class of 2017. The list includes 15 players and three coaches/contributors. Six inductees from the 18 will be selected and announced on October 12.
Salave'a, WSU's defensive line coach and assistant head coach, is a native of Leone, American Samoa and in his fifth season at WSU under Mike Leach. WSU’s roster lists 16 players of Polynesian descent, including seven from American Samoa. Salave'a has had a hand in their recruitment and served as the primary recruiter on the seven from American Samoa. Salave'a's primary recruiting territories are Utah, American Samoa, Hawaii and Alaska.
WSU’s ALLISON ON 'UNDRAFTED' STARTING TUESDAY Sept. 12, 8:15 AM
Former Cougar linebacker Jeremiah Allison will be featured in the NFL’s Network's Undrafted series starting Tuesday. Eight one-hour episodes will be shown Tuesdays at 5 p.m. Pacific. Along with Allison, the series will profile five other under-the-radar prospects, following them on and off the field as they prepared and performed in the NFL’s regional combines, their college teams’ respective pro days, and training camps with NFL clubs.
ESPN STILL SEES 0-2 COUGS IN BOWL Sept. 12, 8:15 AM
At 0-2, ESPN still sees Washington State going bowling, receiving an at-large bid. For the full Pac-12 projection, CLICK HERE
SLING TV & PAC-12 NETS: COULD BE GAME CHANGER Sept. 8, 8:15 AM
Pac-12 Networks and Sling TV have partnered up to make all six Pac-12 Networks regional feeds available through streaming. Sling TV is the first over-the-top provider to offer the network’s content. Sling TV customers can get all six regional feeds: Pac-12 Washington, Pac-12 Arizona. Pac-12 Bay Area, Pac-12 Los Angeles, Pac-12 Mountain, Pac-12 Oregon.
The minimum cost is $25 per month (Sling Orange at $20, plus Sports Extra ($5).
The national Pac-12 Networks feed is available for an extra $10 per month for new Sling Blue Sports Extra subscribers. Existing Sling Blue Sports Extra customers will receive the six additional Pac-12 Networks channels automatically, and their price will remain $5 per month with their current subscription. A quick check of the Pac-12 Networks schedule shows games broadcast on the Pac-12 National feed are also available on the regional feed (WSU vs. Idaho on Sept. 17 is on Pac-12 Washington and Pac-12 National, for example).
WSU SOCCER BLASTS NORTH DAKOTA STATE Sept. 5, 9:57 AM
Freshman Morgan Weaver got the hat trick with three goals and senior Kaitlyn Johnson assisted on a school-record four scores as Washington State (3-2) cruised to a 5-0 victory over North Dakota State (3-3) on Sunday night. Washington State travels to Fort Worth to face TCU on Friday at 5 p.m. PT. The Horned Frogs were receiving votes in the most recent NSCAA poll.
WSU DOUBLE-DIGIT UNDERDOG TO BOISE STATE Sept. 4, 1:31 PM
The Cougs have opened as a 12-point underdog to Boise State, according to Las Vegas. The current betting line early Sunday afternoon had dropped to 10 1/2. WSU's first road game of the season at BSU is slated for a 7:15 pm kickoff, televised on ESPN 2.
MASTRO’S GUYS GET THE POINTS Sept. 4, 12:15 PM
Washington State's offense scored 42 points in the season opener. The Cougars’ running backs coach, Jim Mastro, had a hand in all of ‘em. A Mastro recruit or position player was involved in all six TDs on the night: WR Gabe Marks (2 TDs), WR Kyle Sweet, RB Jamal Morrow, RB Gerard Wicks (2 TDs).
MIKE UTLEY TO BE HONORED DURING WSU-UCLA GAME Sept. 1, 3:39 PM
The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame announced Thursday that inductee Mike Utley will be honored on campus when Washington State hosts UCLA on Oct. 15. During the NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salutes, each inductee returns to his alma mater to accept a Hall of Fame plaque that will remain on permanent display at the institution, with the events taking place on the field during a home game.
Utley was a three-time All-Pac-10 selection at guard for the Cougs from 1985-88, his final two seasons as a first-team pick, and was named consensus All-America his senior season in 1988. He was inducted into Washington State’s Hall of Fame in 2004, and the team’s Offensive Lineman of the Year Award carries his name.
Utley will become the fourth Cougar player to enter to the Hall of Fame and sixth member overall, joining Mel Hein, Turk Edwards and Rueben Mayes. WSU coaches William Henry "Lone Star" Dietz and Babe Hollingbery are also in the Hall of Fame. (Forrest Eveshevski is as well, but mostly for his work at Iowa).
After a school record 43 straight starts, Utley was taken in the third round of the 1989 NFL Draft by the Detroit Lions. He played three seasons in the NFL, starting the first 11 games in 1991 for Detroit before suffering a spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed from the chest and elbows down. He has since regained the use of his shoulders, arms and hands, and has partial movement in his legs. Utley has since won dozens of awards for community service and his work with those suffering from spinal cord injuries.
WHERE OLD BCS COMPUTERS RANK COUGS Aug 31, 3:39 PM
Remember the computer rankings, the ones used in the old BCS formula? They're still around. Headed into 2016, the composite rankings of the computer rankings slots Washington State No. 34 nationally. Richard Billingsley ranks the Cougs the highest, at No. 25. The other metrics have the Cougs as follows: Wes Colley (33); Ken Massey (36); Peter Wolfe (41) and Jeff Sagarin (30).
The computers rank Stanford at No. 6, Oregon No. 20, USC No. 21, UW No. 22, UCLA No. 24, Utah No. 27, Wazzu at No. 34, Cal at No. 42, Arizona State at No. 51, Arizona at No. 52, Colorado at No. 84 and Oregon State at No. 95.
FOX WRITER PROJECTS WSU IN FOSTER FARMS Aug 30, 4:28 PM
Fox Sports' Stewart Mandel projects Washington State to receive the bid for the Pac-12’s fourth bowl game and play Northwestern in the Foster Farms bowl on Dec. 28 in Santa Clara, Calif. Mandel predicts Stanford claims the conference’s Rose Bowl berth, UCLA in the Alamo Bowl (2nd Pac-12 pick); UW in the Holiday Bowl (3rd); Oregon in the Sun Bowl (5th); USC in the Las Vegas Bowl (6th) and Utah in the Cactus Bowl (7th).
WSU ADDS UTAH STATE TO 2020, 2021 SCHEDULES Aug 30, 2:50 PM
Bill Moos announced Washington State has agreed to a home-and-home football series with Utah State beginning in 2020. The first game is scheduled to be played in Logan, Utah, Sept. 5, 2020, with the return contest Sept. 4, 2021 in Martin Stadium. The 2020 game will mark the first time the two teams have faced each other since 1961, a 34-14 WSU loss in Spokane. The Cougars won the first two meetings in the series, a 33-0 victory in Pullman in 1949, and a 46-6 win in Logan in 1950.
“One of our scheduling philosophies includes efforts to face quality regional competition, and Utah State certainly fits that model,” said Moos. “Having announced Kansas State earlier this summer, along with prior agreements with Boise State and BYU our fans should be excited about our future nonconference schedules.”
Washington State's home-and-home agreement with Boise State is for the 2016 and 2017 seasons. WSU hosts BYU in 2019 and the home-and-home featuring K-State is scheduled for the 2026 and 2029 seasons.
ESPN WRITERS PROJECT COUGS' BOWL DESTINATIONS Aug 29, 3:00 PM
Two ESPN writers have different ideas on where WSU will go bowling this season. Brett McMurphy picks Washington State to have a rematch with Boise State in the Las Vegas Bowl. Mark Schlabach sees Washington State vs. Penn State in the Foster Farms Bowl. The Foster Farms is fourth in the Pac-12 bowl selection order, the Las Vegas bowl is sixth. Both ESPN writers pick Stanford to play in the Rose Bowl.
WSU SETS SEASON TICKETS & CAF MEMBERSHIP RECORDS Aug 29, 11:13 AM
On Cougar Calls with Bill Moos Monday, WSU's Uri Farkas said the Cougs ended fiscal year with 7,714 CAF members -- and currently stand at 14,200 season tickets sold ahead of the 2016 campaign. Both figures are all-time program highs at Washington State.
COUGS KNOCK OFF No. 13 SANTA CLARA IN SOCCER Aug 26, 12:06 AM
Sophomore Alysha Overland’s goal in the 39th minute proved to be the decider as Washington State knocked No. 13 Santa Clara from the unbeaten ranks with a 1-0 win Thursday in front of 1,506 fans at Lower Soccer Field. With the win the Cougars moved to 1-1 while Santa Clara, after opening 2016 with back-to-back wins over No. 11 USC and No. 18 California, fell to 2-1. WSU goalkeeper Ella Dederick collected three saves on the night and moved into a tie for seventh on WSU’s all-time wins list with 15, She also moved into eighth on the all-time WSU saves list with 108.
The win marked WSU’s first against a Top 15 team since a 1-0 victory at No. 9 California in 2014. The Cougars next take to the pitch on Sunday when they travel to face Gonzaga in Spokane. Game time is set for 6 p.m.
LUKE FALK AND FOUR OTHER PAC-12 PLAYERS MAKE HEISMAN LIST Aug 25, 12:30 PM
Luke Falk was pegged at No. 16 of sixteen candidates for the 2016 Heisman Trophy Award by College 24/7 writer Chase Goodbread on NFL.com. Falk led all of college football quarterbacks last season throwing for 4,561 yards while completing 447 passes including 38 TD's and just 8 INT's.
Goodbread's "16 for '16" list ranks seven QB's higher than WSU's fourth-year junior, including his No. 1 candidate Deshaun Watson of Clemson.
For the entire list, CLICK HERE
THREE COUGS NAMED TO SENIOR BOWL WATCH LIST Aug. 24, 7:10 AM
Cougars River Cracraft, Shalom Luani and Gabe Marks have been named to the 2017 Senior Bowl watch list. Cracraft, an inside receiver, is eighth in WSU program history with 165 receptions despite missing six games the past two seasons to injury. He is on pace to finish his career No. 2 on the all-time WSU receptions list. Luani, who posted 90 tackles and a team-high four interceptions last season, is a Pac-12 postseason honors candidate and squarely in the conversation for the Cougs’ best defensive player. Marks, already WSU's all-time leader in receptions with 227, set program records with 15 TD receptions and 104 grabs last year. He is on pace to become the all-time Pac-12 record in pass receptions (294, Nelson Spruce, Colorado).
The watch list will be pared down to 110 players who will be on the rosters for the 2017 Senior Bowl held January 28 at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile. Ala. Former WSU o-lineman Joe Dahl, now with the Detroit Lions, represented WSU in the 2016 Senior Bowl.
BIG THURSDAY COMING FOR WSU SOCCER Aug. 23, 10:50 PM
Washington State soccer has its work cut out to even its record at 1-1 this week. After losing its season opener 2-1 in overtime vs. No. 16 BYU last week, the Cougs will host No. 13 Santa Clara on Thursday at Lower Soccer Field at 7 p.m. The match will be televised by the Pac-12 Network. WSU began the season just outside the top 25 (receiving votes and at No. 30) and is coming off a 14-win season in 2015 and a fifth consecutive NCAA Championship berth.
KLAY THOMPSON NOW AN OLYMPIC CHAMPION Aug. 21, 3:00 PM
Former Washington State standout and current Golden State Warriors star Klay Thompson is now an Olympic gold medalist. Team USA routed Serbia 99-66 today in the championship of the men's basketball tournament in Rio. The USA finished the Games with an 8-0 record. Thompson, who started six times, averaged 21.1 minutes and 9.9 points per outing in the Games. He is the first Cougar to win a gold medal in basketball.
COUGS HIGHEST IN AP PRESEASON TOP 25 SINCE 2003 Aug. 21, 9:50 AM
The Associated Press today released its college football preseason top 25 and Washington State garnered 68 votes -- not enough to crack the top 25 but it does put the Cougars in 29th. This marks the first time WSU has received votes in AP's preseason poll since the Holiday Bowl=bound season of 2003. Five Pac-12 teams (Stanford 8th, UW 14th, UCLA 16th, USC 20th and Oregon 24th) made the top 25 and one other (Utah, one spot in front) joined WSU in the others receiving votes category. WSU's Week 2 opponent, Boise State, also received votes, coming in directly behind the Cougs. Alabama is picked No. 1. Click here for the full break down.
MOTUM, BAYNES DO PART BUT TEAM NARROWLY MISSES BRONZE Aug. 21, 9:45 AM
Former Washington State standout Brock Motum came off the bench to ignite Australia today in the bronze medal game against Spain at the Rio Olympics but it wasn't enough and the Boomers fell 89-88. Motum came on strong after Andrew Bogut fouled out. He scored 12 points -- two coming on a Twitter-igniting slam dunk on Pao Gasol -- and grabbed 6 rebounds. Fellow Cougar Aron Baynes scored a go-ahead bucket for Australia with 9.7 seconds left but a controversial foul on Patty Mills put Spain on the line for two FTs that proved the margin of difference. Another Cougar, Klay Thompson, will play for gold later today when Team USA faces Serbia.
BERNARD LAGAT: DID HE OR DIDN'T HE? Aug. 20, 7:00 PM
Twitter and the national news services marveled last night that WSU and USA running legend Bernard Lagat, at the ripe old age of 41, had won the bronze medal in the 5,000 meters. Alas, he didn't. Lagat placed sixth but was elevated to third following the disqualification of three runners and then was moved back to sixth when the DQs were appealed and overturned.
FOX WRITER PREDICTS WSU, UW TIE IN PAC-12 NORTH Aug. 18, 9:19 AM
Fox writer Stewart Mandel picks Washington State and Washington to finish with identical records at 9-3, 6-3 in conference play. Stanford is Mandel's pick to win the North at 10-2, 7-2. "QB Luke Falk and WR Gabe Marks highlight what should be another prolific Mike Leach offense, and the Cougars’ D keeps getting better," writes Mandel. For the full entry, CLICK HERE
WSU DE HERCULES MATA'AFA MAKES ESPN LIST Aug. 18, 9:19 AM
WSU's rising third-year sophomore Hercules Mata'afa is No. 39 on ESPN's list of top 100 breakout players in 2016. The Cougar d-end posted 32 tackles (11 for a loss, seven sacks), one forced fumble and one fumble recovery in 13 games last season, despite no starts.
"With 22 percent of his tackles as a freshman coming in the form of sacks, there’s no doubting he’s a playmaker. The challenge for the 6-foot-2, 255-pounder is to prove that he can be an every-down lineman, and not just a rush specialist, as he replaces fifth-year end Darryl Paulo," writes ESPN.
WSU DEBUTS AT No. 4 IN ESPN POWER RANKINGS Aug. 17, 10:11 AM
Washington State is No. 4 in ESPN's first Pac-12 power rankings. The Cougs are behind No. 3 Washington, No. 2 Oregon and No. 1 Stanford. "Cougs, you’ve earned the right to be listed in the preseason among the league’s elite. The offense is explosive with one of the best QB-WR tandems in the country. The defense has quietly made big strides from last season. A healthy Washington State team is a legitimate threat to anyone in the conference," writes ESPN's Kevin Gemmell. For the full entry, click here.
COUG RBs FINALLY GETTING SOME NATIONAL LOVE Aug. 17, 8:45 AM
In the positional rankings that are rampant during the preseason, WSU's running backs in Mike Leach's Air Raid have always been found far down the list -- and usually last in the Pac-12. ESPN on Wednesday, however, slotted the Cougar 'backs No. 7 in the conference headed into the 2016 season (we still think that's not high enough given this group of Gerard Wicks, Jamal Morrow, Keith Harrington and James Williams but hey, it's progress).
"The Cougars are also in solid shape here, despite the premise that Air Raid teams don't run the ball. Washington State actually doubled its rushing output last season behind the talented three-headed attack of Gerard Wicks, Jamal Morrow, and Keith Harrington. Now, it's time to add redshirt freshman James Williams into the mix," writes ESPN's David Lombardi. For the full entry, click here.
LUKE FALK NAMED TO FOURTH WATCH LIST Aug. 15, 4:41 PM
Washington State quarterback Luke Falk was named to the Manning Awar watch list on Monday, his fourth preseason watch list. Falk is one of 30 quarterbacks named to the Manning list. The winner will be selected by a voting panel, which includes national media and each of the Mannings, after the bowls. It is the only quarterback award that includes the candidates’ bowl performances in its balloting. Falk was previously named to the watch lists for the Maxwell Award (Player of the Year), the Davey O’Brien Award (Top Quarterback) and Walter Camp (Player of the Year).
Falk, a fourth-year junior, was an All-Pac-12 first-team selection last season after leading the country in passing at 380.5 yards-per-game and guiding the Cougars to a 9-4 record capped by a Sun Bowl victory over Miami. The Logan, Utah native set a school record with 38 touchdown passes, good for fourth in the nation, and was second in school history with 4,566 passing yards.
OLD COUG'S EXUBERANCE LANDS HIM ON DL Aug. 14, 7:54 AM
MIAMI – Adam Conley was done in by his own exuberance.The former Washington State star went on the disabled list on Sunday for the oddest of reasons. He injured his left hand on August 3 while celebrating a home run by teammate Jeff Mathis at Chicago’s Wrigley Field .
“I hit the roof of the dugout – the ceiling is lower there,” said Conley, referring to antiquated Wrigley, home of the Cubs. “It was a fluke thing.
“It didn’t really bother me too much at the time, but it’s been kind of nagging me.”
On Saturday, the nagging pain obviously became too much. Conley, who escaped with a no-decision in an 8-7 loss to the Chicago White Sox, lasted just four innings, allowing five hits, four walks and four runs. HE had trouble putting hitters away in the first two innings, allowing four of them to get on base despite having two strikes on them in the count.
So the 26-year-old Conley – in his first full year in the majors - goes on the DL with respectable numbers: an 8-6 record and a 4.07 ERA. But here is the concern with Conley: He had a 3.62 ERA in the first half of the season, spanning 18 starts. But in six second-half starts, he has a 4.94 ERA.
Marlins manager Don Mattingly doesn’t seem too concerned and said he hopes to get Conley back in 15 days. “We felt like it was a good time to put him on the DL and give him a few extra days,” Mattingly said. “It just seemed like he was dragging a bit and his velocity was down.” - Walter Villa
KLAY THOMPSON SAVES THE DAY FOR U.S. IN RIO Aug. 14, 2:08 PM
CouGreat Klay Thompson returned to the starting lineup at the Rio Olympics after a two-game absence and notched a team-high 30 points in the United State's 100-97 nail biting win over France on Sunday. Thompson entered the contest having missed 13 of 16 from long range, spread out over four games, but hit 7-13 from behind the three-point arc to lead the U.S. to victory. Team USA is now 5-0.
WSU WRAPS UP HOOPS TOUR OF ITALY WITH A WILD GAME Aug. 14, 7:54 AM
Washington State men’s basketball held a 29-point halftime lead but fell to Loca Ubriaca, 114-109, in overtime, Saturday as it wrapped up the five-game tour of Italy. The Cougs finished the trip 3-2. Costly turnovers late by the Cougars allowed Loca Ubriaca to come all the way back and WSU actually trailed by a bucket towards the end of regulation, before a layup by Iroegbu with 18 seconds to go tied the game.
The Cougs went with a youth movement in the last game, mostly resting its starters. Sophomore Robert Franks and senior Ike Iroegbu led the scoring in the finale, each with 21 points. Franks was 10-for-12 from the field and added a team-high 8 rebounds while Iroegbu dished 8 assists. Freshman Malachi Flynn had a double-double with 15 points and 11 assists. He also had 7 rebounds.
The Cougars, who spent 10 days in Italy, return to Pullman on Sunday.
CLIFFORD ONE OF 5 COUGS IN DOUBLE FIGURES AS WSU WINS Aug. 12, 5:05 PM
WSU got back in the win column after a victory over BC Silute out of Lithuania, 105-92, on Friday. Seniors Ike Iroegbu and Josh Hawkinson each recorded a double-double, led by Iroegbu’s game-high 29 points, while fifth-year senior Conor Clifford and junior Derrien King each had 13 points and true freshman Malachi Flynn added 11. Flynn also posted 7 assists and 4 steals. Iroegbu had 10 assists and 7 rebounds for Washington State and shor 7-for-10 from the field and 14-for-15 from the foul line. Hawkinson added 24 points, 12 rebounds and 2 blocked shots. He was 11-for-20 from the field and has recorded a double-double in each of the last three games of the tour. The Cougars conclude their tour of Italy against All-Star Loca Ubriaca Saturday before heading home to the United States on Aug. 14.
COUGS DROP TO 2-1 ON ITALY TOUR Aug. 11, 4:33 PM
Washington State men’s basketball team lost its lead late in the fourth quarter, falling 67-58 to Vicenze Select on Thursday in Italy. Vicenze ended the game on a 9-0 run. The Cougs are now 2-1 on their five-game tour of Italy. Senior Josh Hawkinson recorded his second-straight double-double with 14 points and 14 rebounds. Senior Charles Callison and junior Derrien King each added 10 points. Callison had a team-high 3 steals and King added 8 rebounds. Both teams struggled from the field as the Cougars shot .323 (20-62), while Vicenze shot .300 (21-for-70).
IT'S CLASH OF COUGS IN OLYMPIC GAMES HOOPS Aug. 11, 11:11 AM
Washington State, which has more alums playing basketball in the Rio Olympics than any college in the nation, was well represented Wednesday when Team USA defeated Australia 98-88. All three Cougar hoopers at the Games were on the court: Klay Thompson for Team USA and Aron Baynes and Brock Motum for Australia. Klay hit two shots from downtown but had an off night, going 2-9 from the field in 23 minutes of action. He also had 4 rebounds and 2 assists. Baynes scored 4 points and pulled down 3 rebounds in 17 minutes and Motum played 3 minutes and had 1 rebound. The USA and Australia are currently the top two teams in the Group A bracket.
Earlier this week, Thompson told Pac-12.com "it's crazy to think that it was eight years ago when I started (at WSU) and about six when I left. It's wild and I couldn't imagine being here. I'm here with two of my (WSU) teammates, Brock Motum and Aron Baynes. So, it's going to be fun playing against them."
COUGS MOVE TO 2-0 ON ITALY TRIP Aug. 10, 8:10 AM
Seniors Josh Hawkinson and Ike Iroegbu each posted a double-double in Washington State's 95-80 victory over Cusground Pisa, Tuesday. The Cougars moved to 2-0 on their tour of Italy.
Hawkinson finished with 26 points and 12 rebounds. Iroegbu had 13 points and 10 assists along with 5 steals. Junior Derrien King added 13 points, freshman Malachi Flynn had 12 and redshirt sophomore K.J. Langston score 10 points. The Cougars shot .486 (34-for-70) from the field and assisted on 18 shots. As a team the Cougars were 20-for-25 from the free throw line. The Cougars next play Thursday at Palazzetto dello Sport in Vicenza against Vicenze Select. WSU's Italy trip concludes Aug. 14.
FORMER COUG AD HEADED TO MIZZOU Aug. 9, 7:22 AM
San Diego State athletics director Jim Sterk will take over as Missouri’s new AD on Sept. 1, San Diego State announced Monday. The Post-Dispatch and other outlets reported the news earlier in the day. Sterk, 60, was AD at Washington State from 2000-10, during which time he began a four-phase renovation of the football stadium, hired football coaches Bill Doba and Paul Wulff, and also basketball head men Dick Bennett and Tony Bennett. The latter coached the Cougars to two NCAA Tournaments. Sterk was recently named AD of the year by National Association of College Directors of Athletics, and was about to start his seventh year at San Diego State.
ATHLON ALL-NAME TEAM INCLUDES PAIR OF COUGS Aug. 8, 6:30 PM
Cougar defensive end Hercules Mata'afa was named Athlon All-Name third team and wide receiver River Cracraft received honorable mention. You can find the full list HERE. Former Cougs Austin Apodaca and Squally Canada also made the list.
WSU CRUISES TO OPENING WIN ON ITALY TOUR Aug. 6, 7:07 PM
Senior Josh Hawkinson led all scorers with 24 points and freshman Malachi Flynn dished seven assists as Washington State men’s basketball defeated 2F Sport Management out of Rome, 104-68, Saturday night at Palazetto dello Sport. Four Cougars reached double-figures including Flynn (13 points) and senior Ike Iroegbu and sophomore Robert Franks (12 apiece). Iroegbu led the team with 8 rebounds, followed by redshirt senior Conor Clifford with 7. Sophomore Viont’e Daniels had 5 points and 4 assists on the night. WSU leaves Rome Sunday morning and heads to Florence. Its next game is scheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 9 at Palazzetto dell Sport in Pisa against Selezione Cusground.
COUGS RECEIVE VOTES IN COACHES POLL Aug. 4, 9:07 AM
The Cougs landed outside the top 25 in the Coaches poll on Thursday, in the others receiving votes category. WSU's 47 votes places them at No. 30. Week Two opponent Boise State was at No. 29. For the full poll, CLICK HERE.
WSU WOMEN'S SOCCER JUST OUTSIDE TOP 25 POLL RANKING Aug. 2, 3:13 PM
Washington State's women's soccer team is in the "others receiving votes" category in the NSCAA top 25 preseason poll. With 14 votes, WSU is ranked No. 30. WSU opens its season Aug. 19 vs. No. 16 BYU at 7 p.m. at home. Eight of Washington State’s 2016 opponents are ranked in the top 25 or receiving votes in the poll. WSU is coming off a 14-win season having earned a fifth consecutive NCAA Championship berth in 2015.
COUGAR WRs IN FOX SCRIBE's NATIONAL TOP 10 Aug. 1, 1:07 PM
Fox scribe Bruce Feldman ranked WSU's wide receiver corps No. 8 nationally on Monday. Gabe Marks, River Cracraft, Robert Lewis, Tavares Martin and others all come in for praise. Kyle Sweet, John Thompson, C.J. Dimry and two newcomers, Dezmon Patmon and Isaiah Johnson, also merit mention. For the full entry, CLICK HERE.
FALK GETS DARK HORSE MENTION FOR HEISMAN July 30, 1:55 PM
In an ESPN SportsCenter segment today, WSU junior QB Luke Falk was tabbed a dark horse for this season's Heisman Trophy. Last season, no quarterback in the land threw for more yards per game or completed a higher percentage of passes while under pressure than Falk. He was named first-team All-Pac-12 but didn't draw Heisman consideration. Ryan Leaf is WSU's highest-ever Heisman finisher (third in 1997) and seven others have placed in the top 10 (Jerome Harrison, Jason Gesser, Timm Rosenbach, Drew Bledsoe, Rueben Mayes, Jack Thompson and Ed Goddard).
BUCANNON PLANS TO BRING MORE BANG TO THE DOLLAR July 30, 1:50 PM
Former WSU All-American safety Deone Bucannon, now a hybrid linebacker and tackling stat machine for the Arizona Cardinals, was down to 209 pounds by the end of last NFL season, he tells arizonasports.com in this story. “I feel like 209 pounds going against 300 pounders is probably not a good matchup,” he said. “I figured I’d put on a little more weight so I can carry it all throughout the season.” He's been living in the weight room all offseason and looks the part. He's noticeably bigger even though he still checks in at a spritely 218.
Cardinals coach Cardinals Bruce Arians likes what he sees. “He’s had that natural weight gain; he hasn’t lost any speed or quickness,” he said. “The more he plays that position (the "dollar" linebacker), he’s just going to get better and better.” Bucannon led the Cards last season with 127 total tackles.
CF.C COLUMNIST ALEX BRINK ON THE RADIO July 28, 8:55 PM
The pregame radio show before Cougar football games just got even better. CouGreat Alex Brink will now be on every pregame show with KXLY's Derek Deis this season, play-by-play man Matt Chazanow said Thursday on twitter.
MIKE LEACH No. 98 ON ALL-TIME LIST July 27, 3:26 PM
WSU head man Mike Leach is No. 98 on the sportsonearth.com's greatest 100 college football coaches of all time. Calling Leach "one of the most influential coaches in college football history," sportsonearth.com also notes his coaching tree that includes Dana Holgorsen, Kliff Kingsbury, Art Briles, Sonny Dykes plus rising assistants Lincoln Riley and Sonny Cumbie. Leach went 9-4 this past season, his fourth at Washington State, including a Sun Bowl victory over Miami. For Nos. 51-100, click here.
TWO FORMER WSU COACHES MAKE TOP 100 LIST July 27, 3:26 PM
Dennis Erickson and Forest Evashevski have made sportsonearth.com's greatest 100 college football coaches of all time list. Erickson is ranked No. 61, with Evashevski coming in at No. 71. Erickson coached the Cougs from 1987-88. He went 3–7–1 in his first year before a 9-3 mark in 1988, capped by a win in the Aloha Bowl and top 20 ranking. He compiled a 179–96–1 college record that included two national titles at Miami and a 40–56 mark in the NFL. He is currently the running backs coach at Utah.
Evashevski coached Washington State to a top-20 season in 1951. He also spent two seasons in Pullman before moving on to Iowa where he coached for nine more seasons. At WSU, Evashevski was 4–3–2 in 1950 before the Cougars posted a 7–3 mark in 1951. Evashevski compiled a 68-35-6 over 12 seasons as a head coach.
COUGARS HAWKINSON, LONGRUS HONORED July 26, 1:02 PM
WSU senior Josh Hawkinson and graduate manager Junior Longrus have been named to the National Association of Basketball Coaches Honors Court, recognizing those collegiate basketball student-athletes who excelled in academics during the 2015-16 season. Hawkinson will enter his senior season majoring in management operations. He currently has a 3.33 GPA and is a two-time Pac-12 all-academic honoree. Longrus graduated this May with a double major in management operations and accounting with a 3.38 grade point average. He was a three-time Pac-12 all-academic honoree.
COUGAR HOOPS READY FOR ITALY TRIP July 25, 4:30 PM
Washington State men’s basketball team will next week embark on a 10-day international tour of Italy, from August 4-14, Ernie Kent announced in a statement from WSU SID. The tour will take Washington State to several different cities including Rome, Florence, Vatican City, Pisa, Tuscany, Venice, Vicenza and Como. Washington State will play five games in Italy starting with Dream Team Italy Select, Saturday, Aug. 6 in Rome. In the second game, the Cougars will face Tuscany Select, Aug. 9 at Tuscany. The third game is against Vicenza Select, Aug. 11 at Vicenza followed by Italian Select, Aug. 12 at Como and BC Silute of Lithuania on Aug. 13 also at Como.
Washington State is scheduled for additional activities such as a trip to Vatican City, a sightseeing tour of the Colosseum and Roman Forum, a tour of the Leaning Tower of Pisa, a trip to the U.S. Military Base at Vicenza and a sightseeing tour of Lake Como, which includes a stop at Bellagio. The NCAA allows teams to travel overseas for a summer tour once every four years. Washington State most recently toured Australia in August of 2012 and before that Australia and New Zealand in the June of 2007.
WSU HOOPS: MORE OLYMPIANS THAN ANY OTHER NCAA TEAM July 22, 1:20 PM
Washington State has the most Olympic basketball players of any NCAA team in the 2016 Rio games, CBS Sports’ Matt Norlander reports. The Cougs have three players representing the US and Australia: Klay Thompson, USA; Aron Baynes, Australia and Brock Motum, Australia. The 2016 Summer Olympics get underway in Rio de Janeiro on Aug. 5.
LEACH'S SALARY RANKS SEVENTH IN PAC-12 July 21, 12:22 PM
Mike Leach ranks No. 7 in the Pac-12 in salary, at $2.75 million per year, The Mercury Press reported using USA Today data and other sources.
"Comment: Not that we’re keeping track, but Leach was 4-1 last season against higher-earning coaches. 'AD Bill Moos, coach Leach’s agent is on line 1,'" wrote Wilner.
Topping the list is UW's Chris Petersen, at $3.6 million annually. UCLA’s Jim Mora was second at $3.45 million, Oregon’s Mark Helfrich and Utah's Kyle Whittingham tied for third at $3.3 million per year, while Arizona’s Rich Rodriguez was fifth ($3.2 million). ASU's Todd Graham was sixth ($3.1 million) followed by Leach, with Cal’s Sonny Dykes and Stanford's Davis Shaw tying for eighth on the list at $2.65 million. Oregon State’s Gary Andersen ($2.55 million) and Colorado's Mike Mike MacIntyre ($2 million) were 10th and 11th, respectively. No data was available for USC's Clay Helton. The figures do not include performance bonuses or deferred compensation. You can see the list HERE
PAC-12 EXPANSION? NOT SO FAST July 19, 8:02 AM
Commissioner Larry Scott said last week at Pac-12 media days there were no plans to expand the Pac-12 but The Houston Chronicle is reporting Houston athletic director Hunter Yurachek recently met with Scott. "During a West Coast trip in June, Yurachek requested an 'introductory meeting' with Scott at the league offices in San Francisco, a Pac-12 spokesman confirmed Monday. A university source did not disclose the nature of the talks, but it is believed that one of the topics was conference expansion. Yurachek has not been available for comment."
But Yurachek later threw cold water on the speculation, telling CBS Sports, "There was no pitch or anything. There's no substance to that (report) at all...Larry told me they're not interested in expanding. He said, 'I had to pull teeth just to get them to add Colorado and Utah.'"
Houston is looking to join a Power 5 conference, with the Big 12 being most talked about. Houston is the fourth-largest city in the nation, with the school competing in the American Athletic Conference.
TWO COUGS IN SPORTING NEWS TOP 40 July 18, 2:44 PM
Two Cougars, quarterback Luke Falk and wide receiver Gabe Marks, are on Sporting News' list of the top 40 players in college football in 2016. Falk checks in at No. 20 on the list and his "efficient play has the Cougars thinking Pac-12 championship." Marks is No. 34 on the list. "Marks will keep putting up numbers, but it’s his ability to get into the end zone that takes his game to the next level," writes SN.
FOUR COUGS COMPLETE INTERNATIONAL PLAY July 18, 12:30 PM
Four Washington State women’s basketball players concluded competition at the FIBA U20 European Championships on Sunday. Junior Pinelopi Pavlopoulou competed for Greece, averaged 13.0 points, 6.0 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 3.3 steals per game. The Hellas finished 14th in the tournament with wins over the Netherlands and Germany. Sophomore Maria Kostourkova Kostourkova averaged 10.3 ppg and 8.3 rebounds per game over the seven-game championship for host-country Portugal, who finished 10th in the tournament with wins over Spain, Bosnia & Herzegovina, and Turkey.
Incoming freshman Jovana Subasic and Serbia had the best finish of the three Cougars competing at the Division A championship, taking fourth-place in the 16-team tournament. The incoming freshman averaged 5.6 points per game and 4.9 rebounds per game. Serbia finished with wins over Sweden, Portugal, and France. In a close loss to Italy, Subasic scored 13 points and recorded
In the Division B championship at Podgorica, Montenegro, sophomore Borislava Hristova and Bulgaria finished 12th. Over four games, Hristova averaged 12.5 points per game and 5.2 rebounds per game.
COUGAR SOPHOMORE SETS ROSAUERS OPEN RECORD July 17, 7:02 PM
Washington State golfer Derek Bayley followed up his 59 on Saturday by carding a 63 on Sunday to win the Rosauers Open at a record 27 under par, three shots better than any golfer had ever shot in the tourney (and six shots relative to par). Bayley won the tournament by eight strokes over Tacoma club professional Tony Robydek (19 under). Bayley started the day with a two shot lead but found himself in a tie after the third hole. He birdied the fourth to regain the lead and was never threatened again.
SAY HELLO TO MR. 59 July 16, 4:55 pm
Props to WSU sophomore golfer Derek Bayley - he shot a 59 on Saturday in the second round of the Rosauer's Open in Spokane. Bayley carded 11 birdies and an eagle in setting the course record at MeadowWood.
REDDIT: WSU MOST POPULAR FOOTBALL TEAM IN THE STATE July 13, 3:44 pm
Washington State is the most popular football team in the state of Washington, according to a Reddit user poll. WSU received 46.7 percent of the votes, with UW garnering 45.7 percent and Eastern Washington claimed 7.6 percent. You can view the results of all 50 states HERE.
HAWK STARTS, BUT BAYNES SOARS July 12, 8:40 am
WSU's Josh Hawkinson started for the Pac-12 All-Stars in Melbourne last night in the first of a two-game series with the Australian Olympic team, but it was an old Cougar -- Detroit Pistons center Aaron Baynes -- who commanded center stage with a game-high 28 points to lead Australia to a 93-82 victory. Hawkinson finished with 2 points and 4 rebounds in just less than 16 minutes of action. Stats for fellow Cougar Brock Motum, who also plays for Australia, were not available. The two teams square off again on Thursday. Motum and Hawkinson are pictured above in a tweet sent out by WSU athletics.
MOTUM IS HEADED TO RIO July 11, 4:20 pm
Old Cougar scoring wiz Brock Motum is headed the to the Olympic Games. He has been selected to Australia's national basketball team, joining another old Cougar, Olympic and NBA veteran Aron Baynes. A third Coug, Klay Thompson, will be hooping it up in Rio as well, for Team USA.
OUR NOMINATION FOR TWEET OF THE WEEK July 11, 3:00 pm
ANDERSON'S OLYMPICS QUEST COMES UP SHORT July 10, 7:30 PM
Jeshua Anderson won't be headed to Rio. The 400 meters hurdler made it through two rounds of qualifying but failed to finish in the top three in Sunday's U.S. Olympic trails final. Anderson, who was in the outermost lane, ran a time of 49.41 and finished sixth, but was listed on the official results page as having been disqualified. The winner, two-time world champion Kerron Clement, turned in a time of 48.50. Anderson's personal best, run in 2011, is a 47.93. At Washington State from 2007-10, Anderson won four consecutive Pac-10 championships, and claimed three NCAA titles. He was awarded All-American honors all four years of his WSU career. Anderson was also a wide receiver for the Cougs during his freshman and sophomore years (plus the first two games his junior season) before putting all of his focus into track.
MORE CONCUSSION LAWSUITS FILED AGAINST NCAA July 9, 11:58 AM
The latest round of class action concussion lawsuits were filed this week against the NCAA by former college football players from Stanford, Boston College, North Carolina, Wake Forest and BYU. At least 15 lawsuits have been filed since May, and as many as 50 are expected. Previous suits have been filed by former players from Penn State, Ohio State, Tennessee, Vanderbilt and others. The lawsuits name major college conferences such as the SEC and Big Ten, the NCAA and in some cases individual schools. The players are seeking damages for injuries they claim are the result of mishandled concussions they suffered while playing college football.
'GLEASON' CONSIDERED AN OSCAR FAVORITE July 8, 5:15 PM
The Guardian of London is out with its early take on the race for best documentary film at the next Academy Awards and dubs "Gleason," about former Cougar standout and New Orleans Saint icon Steve Gleason, "the documentary to beat this year." The film is built on home videos Gleason made for his son after being diagnosed with ALS.
The Guardian's Nigel Smith writes that the film is "one of the most intensely raw documentaries in recent memory." He adds, "Gleason by no means make for easy viewing: watching Gleason’s supportive wife crumble under the weight of the expectations placed upon her is heartbreaking, as are the many heated exchanges between Gleason and his religious father, who wants his son to accept his fundamentalist ideals. What it is, is essential viewing. You leave the film shaken to the core, yet profoundly enriched by Gleason’s continued fight to live life to the fullest. Every tear feels earned."
HALLIDAY, KING FELIX TO TAKE THE MOUND July 8, 4:00 PM
Former WSU quarterback Connor Halliday will throw out the first pitch Sunday afternoon as part of Cougar Alumni Day at the Everett Aquasox game. As fate would have it, the game will be extra special because Mariners ace Felix Hernandez will be pitching for the Sox in a rehab start.
3 COUG GOLFERS EARN NATIONAL HONORS July 8, 3:30 PM
Three WSU women's golfers have been named All-American Scholars by Women's Collegiate Golf: senior Nani Yanagi (Hilo, Hawaii), sophomore Alivia Brown (Gig Harbor) and freshman Madison Odiorne (Bend ). Each maintains a cumulative 3.5 GPA or better. This is the second-straight year Yanagi and Brown have been so honored.
4 COUGARS TO COMPETE IN U-20 EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPS July 7, 4:53 PM
Three WSU women’s basketball players and one incoming freshman will be competing in the 2016 FIBA U-20 European Championships this summer. Junior Pinelopi Pavlopoulou, sophomores Maria Kostourkova and Borislava Hristova, and incoming freshman Jovana Subasic will compete for their respective countries July 9-17.
Pavlopoulou, Kostourkova, and Subasic will compete at the Division A championship held in Matosinhos, Portugal, while Hristova competes at the Division B championship in Podgorica, Montenegro. Pavlopoulou, a native of Athens, Greece, will face France, Latvia, and the Netherlands in group play. Kostourkova will compete for Portugal against Spain, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Poland in group play. Subasic, a Serbian national, will face Germany, Italy, and Sweden in the opening rounds. Hristova, competing for Bulgaria, will face Romania, Croatia, and Belarus in the opening rounds. Following group play, all teams will advance to the knockout stage based on results from the opening rounds. For a complete schedule and links to view online streams of the games, visit www.fibaeurope.com.
MORE TIME OFF FOR POWER 5 STUDENT-ATHLETES July 7, 1:53 PM
The commissioners of the Power 5 conferences announced Thursday "an agreement in concept on changes they will propose that are intended to give students who play sports more time off." The first area of change, called “Flex 21,” will provide students, in many cases, with at least an additional 21 days in which they are free of required athletic activities during the academic year. These 21 days are in addition to the current rules related to time off. The proposal includes flexibility so coaches, students and athletic directors can come up with a plan that best suits each sport. For complete details, CLICK HERE.
PAC-12 MEDIA DAYS TV SCHEDULE July 6, 1:19 PM
The Pac-12 Networks will televise the football media days on July 14 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. PT and on July 15 from 9:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. PT. Washington State's contingent will be take the stage on Thursday at 11:30 a.m. WSU head man Mike Leach will be accompanied by WR Gabe Marks and nickelback Parker Henry.
ESPN RANKS WSU D TRIPLETS 5th IN PAC-12 June 30, 3:52 PM
ESPN ranks the trio of WSU defensive players -- DL Hercules Mata'afa, LB Peyton Pelluer, safety Shalom Luani -- in the upper half of the Pac-12, at No. 5.
ESPN's preseason magazine has predicted WSU will finish fourth in the Pac-12 North but they've given themselves a little leeway here in this entry on the Pac-12 triplets. "These three players were emblematic of that improvement on each level of the unit, and the trio should be expected to showcase further improvement in 2016. If that does indeed happen -- and if this group's supporting cast also follows suit with the upward trend -- then Washington State can be considered a legitimate Pac-12 North title contender. They certainly have the offense to be deemed a credible threat, and that defense is trending in the right direction thanks to players like these," writes ESPN's David Lombardi.
ESPN is also ranking the Pac-12's offensive triplets, with WSU's group yet to be named. There are four more to be revealed in ESPN's offensive countdown.
SINATRO STICKING WITH WSU COMMITMENT June 30, 2:22 PM
Danny Sinatro, picked in the 40th round by Cleveland in the MLB draft, will stick with his WSU commitment and play for skipper Marty Lees, the Issaquah Press reports. Sinatro, a 5-10, 165-pound infielder out of Sammamish's Skyline High, is a switch hitter likely to get his first look at either second base or shortstop at WSU. He will be eligible again for the MLB draft after his junior season. Sinatro's dad Matt, a catcher, was a second round pick in the 1978 MLB draft and played for the Mariners and three other teams over a 10-year pro career. He also served as Lou Piniella's bullpen coach in Seattle from 1995-2002. You can read the full article HERE.
CAF REACHES 7,500 GOAL June 29, 3:41 PM
Congratulations are in order. The Cougar Athletic Fund at Washington State set its sights on 7,500 members by the end of June. On Wednesday afternoon, they got the number they were looking for.
BOWL SELECTION RULES CHANGED June 29, 11:00 AM
A 5-7 team will no longer be allowed to jump over a 6-6 team in the bowl selection process. The NCAA's Division I Council implemented the change on Wednesday for the 2016-17 season. Last year only 77 teams were eligible for the 80 bowl slots. Three 5-7 teams were granted waivers to play in bowl games and all of them won (Nebraska, Minnesota and San Jose State). Eligibility for a 5-7 team will again be determined by the highest, most-recent multiyear APR scores. The NCAA back in April placed a moratorium on new bowl games until at least 2020.
ESPN SEES RBs AS WSU's X-FACTOR June 28, 12:44 PM
ESPN lists the "wild-card players who could be breakout stars in 2016...or not contribute much" for all 12 teams in the Pac-12. For Washington State, whom ESPN is also predicting will finish fourth in the Pac-12 North, they selected the running backs.
The Cougars have the backfield to provide a twist to Mike Leach's air raid attack. Gerard Wicks (107 carries, 610 rushing yards), Jamal Morrow (53-347) and Keith Harrington (37-234) all return, with Wicks providing a big-gain threat: 22 of his carries went for at least 10 yards. Redshirt freshman James Williams has drawn praise from coaches in practice and could also add firepower. You can read the full entry HERE.
IT'S OFFICIAL: KLAY THOMPSON ON US OLYMPIC TEAM June 27, 9:40 AM
USA Basketball on Monday morning unveiled its official 12-man 2016 U.S. Olympic Men's Basketball Team and CouGreat Klay Thompson is on the list.
In addition to Thompson, selected for the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team were: Carmelo Anthony (New York Knicks/Syracuse); Harrison Barnes (Golden State Warriors/North Carolina); Jimmy Butler (Chicago Bulls/Marquette); DeMarcus Cousins (Sacramento Kings/Kentucky); DeMar DeRozan (Toronto Raptors/USC); Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder/Texas); Paul George (Indiana Pacers/Fresno State); Draymond Green (Golden State Warriors/Michigan State); Kyrie Irving (Cleveland Cavaliers/Duke); DeAndre Jordan (Los Angeles Clippers/Texas A&M); Kyle Lowry (Toronto Raptors/Villanova)
The U.S. will play two exhibition games versus 2015 FIBA Asia zone champ China, the first at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on July 24 and the second on July 26 at Oracle Arena in Oakland. The USA will play on in Chicago on July 29 at the United Center vs. Venezuela before finishing up vs. Nigeria on Aug. in Houston at the Toyota Center. The Olympic Games in Rio begin Aug. 5 and run through Aug. 21.
WSU WOMEN'S SOCCER TO BE ON TV 10 TIMES June 25, 8:32 PM
Washington State women’s soccer team is scheduled to make 10 television appearances on the Pac-12 Networks in 2016, including seven home matches. Of Washington State’s nine nonconference matches, only two will be played away from Pullman.
SALAVE'A WANTS OPPORTUNITIES FOR POLYNESIAN PLAYERS June 21, 1:54 PM
Washington State d-line coach Joe Salave'a says he wants every Polynesian student-athlete to have the same opportunity he had to play football. Salave'a was profiled in an article on footballmatters.org. Salave'a, who has turned down job offers at UW and USC to stay at Wazzu, also praised the quality of life out on the Palouse.
"The quality of life in Pullman is unbelievable," said Salave'a. "I think we’re in the place we want to be... I’m not sure how long I’ll coach, but like anything else in life someday I’d like to run my own program. We need more Polynesians in coaching. I enjoy coaching, counseling and mentoring young men. But right now I’m happy here. My job is doing the best job I can at Wazzu.” To read the full article, CLICK HERE.
COUGS VS. EAGLES WILL FEATURE 2 OF NATION'S TOP WRs June 21, 9:40AM
When WSU and Eastern Washington open the 2016 football season with each other, two of the nation's top receivers will be on opposite sides of the ball: Gabe Marks of WSU and Cooper Kupp of EWU. Both are currently projected by NFLdraftscout.com to be among the first 10 receivers taken in next year's NFL draft. Marks caught 104 passes last season and Kupp 114.
KLAY THOMPSON A "LOCK" FOR US OLYMPIC TEAM June 18, 9:45 AM
USA Today predicts CouGreat Klay Thompson is a slam dunk for the 12-man US Olympic team to be chosen from 31 finalists at the end of June. "A gold medalist with the team in the 2014 FIBA World Cup, one of the planet's best shooters is a lock for Rio," said the newspaper. Thompson and Golden State go for their second straight NBA title in Game 7 vs. Cleveland on Sunday at 5 pm PT.
VAEAO MAKING HIS STAND IN PHILLY June 16, 3:59 PM
Undrafted free-agent rookie defensive tackle Destiny Vaeao of WSU appears to be fitting right in with the Eagles' new, attacking 4-3 defense, per this report from the NBC affiliate in Philadelphia. "We have a limited opportunity to make the team, so we have to come out every day and show something," Vaeao says. "And every day is a chance to show the coach and everybody we belong on this team."
DOES PAC-12 NORTH TITLE RUN THROUGH APPLE CUP? June 16, 12:50 PM
Jon Wilner of the San Jose Mercury News is out with his list of the top 10 games headed into the Pac-12's 2016 football season, and the Cougars are penned in twice, with two home games: Oct. 1 vs. Oregon and Nov. 25 vs. Washington.
Of the Oregon game he writes: "Both will have been tested (Oregon by Nebraska, WSU by Boise State). But the stakes and intensity ramp up considerably for teams with designs on the North title. The loser will have much ground to recapture, especially if it’s the Cougars (because of the added weight attached to home losses.)
Of the Apple Cup he writes: "The rivalry game of greatest interest to me based on what we know at this moment. No other can match the Apple Cup for the combination of (projected) high stakes and (likely) fourth-quarter drama."
NEW WSU WING WILL HELP SPEED UP GAME June 16, 10:00 AM
Cougar basketball coach Ernie Kent tells us that the newest addition to his 2016 recruiting class, 6-5 JC wing Keith Langston, has a great feel for the game and possesses outstanding shooting skills, but more than anything he fits into the plan to get more speed on the roster. Kent wants to speed up the game this season, sometimes going with an offense of four guards and one stretch 4 (Josh Hawkinson). Langston is the fifth member of the incoming recruiting class. Kent has one more spot open but may save it until next year if he can't find the right player to fill it.
In case you missed it, CF.C. recently did a two-part Q&A with Kent that thoroughly examined the state of college hoops and where the Cougar program is and where he plans to take it. Click here for Part I and here for Part II.
CAF NUMBERS ARE CLIMBING June 16, 8:00 AM
The Cougar Athletic Fund is in the midst of a marketing push to swell its membership from 7,000 to 7,500 by the end of the fiscal year on June 30. As of this morning, the total stood at 7,153. To get in the game, click here.
INCOMING COUGS ARRIVING IN DROVES June 16, 7:00 AM
The next summer session at Washington State begins on June 19, which means the folks in Pullman will be seeing a steady procession of cars coming into town as the newest members of WSU's football and basketball teams arrive on campus. Summer workouts and classes both begin next week and the vast majority of new recruits are expected to be on campus to jumpstart their college careers.
WHAT YOST LEARNED FROM LEACH June 15, 12:09 PM
Former WSU inside receivers coach Dave Yost, now at Oregon in charge of the quarterbacks, talked to ESPN.com about what he learned from Mike Leach during Yost's time in Pullman.
"I’d get done with my inside receiver meetings and I’d go up and I’d sit in his quarterback meetings just to hear how he talked to the quarterbacks, how he explained things, how he saw things," said Yost. "It’s a different approach and there are a lot of different ways to coach quarterbacks and little things. How he did things were different than how I had before, I’ve tried to take some of that and add it in. ...He is so much about simplicity and keeping it simple as possible for them, which is a fact -- the less they’re thinking, the better they play." To read the full story, CLICK HERE.
'GLEASON' WINS BEST DOCUMENTARY June 14, 2:08 PM
'Gleason' has won The Golden Space Needle Award for Best Documentary at the recently concluded Seattle International Film Festival. The riveting film goes inside the life of Steve Gleason, former CouGreat and NFL player diagnosed with ALS. The documentary opens in select theaters July 29.
RELATED STORY: CLICK HERE
DUBS DENIED BUT THOMPSON AFFIRMS HIS GREATNESS June 13, 10:00 PM
Golden State was denied a title-clinching victory in Game 5 of the NBA Finals Monday against Cleveland, but old Cougar Klay Thompson once again showed why he's one of the greatest shooters in league history. His 26 points -- fueled by six makes from downtown -- in the first half marked the third-most first half points in a finals game in the last 20 years, just behind NBA legends Allen Iverson and Ray Allen.
Thompson, who finished the night with a team-high 37 points on 11-of-20 shooting from the floor, was so hot in the first half that former Husky and current Celtics star Isaiah Thomas tweeted at halftime that "Klay Thompson is the best shooter in the world!!!"
The Warriors hold a 3-2 lead over the Cavs as the two teams return to Cleveland for Game 6 at 6 pm Pacific on Thursday.
NEW NIKE KICKS FOR COUG GRIDDERS June 13, 6:00 PM
The folks in WSU's athletics equipment department do a great job of using Twitter during football season to keep fans informed of uniform combinations on game days and other sartorial happenings, but the offseason also finds them firing up tweets of interest. Here's one of their latest..
WSU BASEBALL QUARTET NAMED ALL-ACADEMIC June 13, 2:42 PM
Four Cougars on the baseball team received Pac-12 Conference All-Academic honors, it was announced Monday. Sophomore Jack Strunc was a first-team selection while fellow sophomores Derek Chapman, Shane Matheny and Ryan Walker each received honorable mention. It is the first all-academic honor for all four
Strunc owns a 3.77 cumulative GPA and has yet to declare a major. The Highlands Ranch, Colo. native appeared in 49 games, making 44 starts with 20 runs scored, four doubles, four stolen bases and 16 RBI. Chapman posted a 3.15 cumulative GPA while appearing in 36 games, scoring 17 runs, recording four doubles and finished third on the team with 11 stolen bases. Matheny owns a 3.33 cumulative GPA while appearing in 52 games with 49 starts, 17 runs scored, one triple, one homers, was third on the team with nine doubles and second with 26 RBI. Walker owns a 3.23 cumulative GPA and earned All-Pac-12 Conference honorable mention after posting a 6-3 record with five saves, a 2.40 ERA and held hitters to a .210 batting average.
YARNO'S SON NEW SANDPOINT HIGH COACH June 10, 3:40 PM
George Yarno's son, also named George, is the new coach at Sandpoint High in Idaho. “I love the town. It’s a very good football program,” Yarno told the Idaho State Journal, and also added that he wants to be closer to his father, who has cancer and is from Spokane, a little over an hour's drive away. The younger Yarno for the past two seasons has been the defensive line coach at perennial 5A power Highland in Pocatello.
Yarno Sr. starred at Washington State before playing 10 years in the NFL as a guard for the Buccaneers, Falcons and Oilers. After that, he became the offensive line coach for Washington State, with other stops at LSU and Arizona State, before coaching seven seasons in the NFL for the Buccaneers, Lions and Jaguars.
ESPN: KLAY THOMPSON DARES YOU TO UNDERESTIMATE HIM June 7, 4:45 PM
Klay Thompson saved the Warriors' season in Oklahoma City, and Thompson who has been Golden State's best and most consistent player all postseason, ESPN says. But Warriors GM Bob Myers might have said it best: "He's like the first Terminator -- the one who doesn't say anything, but computes his mission in his head," Myers told ESPN.com. "The Terminator's mission is to kill John Connor. Klay's mission is to win games." You can read the full article HERE.
FALK IS NO. 1 June 5, NOON
As part of its college football 16 for '16 series, NFL.com is out with an interesting list: the most accurate returning quarterbacks in the nation. No. 1 on the list is WSU rising junior Luke Falk, who completed 69.5 percent of his throws in 2015. He just edged out Oklahoma's Baker Mayfield for the top spot. The two have more than accuracy in common. Both were recruited my Mike Leach and both began their careers as walk ons.
Josh Rosen of UCLA, DeShaun Watson of Clemson and Chad Kelly of Ole Miss round out the top five. Another familiar face on the list is Mark Rypien's nephew, rising Boise State sophomore Brett Rypien. Here's the complete run down.
REDDING TO WALK ON AT WYOMING June 4, 12:28 PM
WSU transfer guard Ny Redding is headed to Laramie, where he will walk on at Wyoming, the Casper Tribune reports. One of the Cowboys' new assistant coaches is Redding's stepfather. He will redshirt this coming season and then have two years of eligibility remaining. His landing completes the transfer process for four Cougs from this past season's team; Renard Suggs is headed to his father's alma mater, Nebraska-Omaha; Que Johnson is going to Western Kentucky; and Valentine Izundu is headed to the Tampering Center of the West, er, San Diego State.
STEMP ALL-PAC-12, 2 OTHER COUGS HONORABLE MENTION June 2, 12:28 PM
WSU second baseman Trek Stemp was named to the All-Pac-12 team, while Cougar pitchers Ian Hamilton and Ryan Walker were All-Pac-12 Honorable Mention as voted on by the conference coaches, WSU SID announced Thursday.
Stemp, a redshirt-junior, finished the regular season fifth in the conference with a .355 batting average and tied for second with 12 stolen bases. Hamilton, a junior that moved to the starting rotation after two All-Pac-12 seasons as a closer, led the Cougars with 62 strikeouts and 87 innings in 15 starts. Walker, a sophomore, earns his first career All-Pac-12 accolade after posting the sixth lowest ERA (2.66) and batting average against (.212) in the conference during Pac-12 play.
JASON HANSON ON COLLEGE HoF BALLOT June 1, 9:00 AM
Jason Hanson, the record-setting Washington State kicker and punter who went on to a 21-year career with the Detroit Lions, is on the ballot with Peyton Manning and other luminaries for possible induction into the College Football Hall of Fame, USA Today reports today. If he elected, Hanson would be the fifth WSU player in the College Hall, joining Mel Hein, Turk Edwards, Rueben Mayes and Mike Utley. In addition, former Cougar coaches Lone Star Dietz and Babe Hollingbery are enshrined. Hanson was elected to the WSU Hall of Fame in 2002.
From 1988-91 at WSU, Hanson was a three-time All-America selection and a three-time Academic All-America. He made 63 of 96 field goals attempts in his career, including a record 19 makes from 50-59 yards. His 62-yard field goal against UNLV is the longest in NCAA history without a kicking tee. Last fall he was voted the greatest kicker in Pac-12 history by a panel of experts commissioned by the conference as part of its 100th anniversary celebration.
The Detroit Free-Press recently caught up with Hanson for a story about his life in retirement and what it would have taken to get him back out for a 22nd NFL season.
PAIR OF COUG GOLFERS HONORED June 1, 8:30 AM
Washington State junior golfers Zach Anderson and Derek Bayley were named Pac-12 All-Academic Honorable Mention recently. A native of Nanaimo, British Columbia, Anderson is undeclared with a 3.15 grade point average. On the course, he played 11 events, maintaining a scoring average of 75.88. In the third round of the Pac-12 Championships, Anderson tied the course record after shooting 7-under par, 64.
Bayley (Rathdrum, Idaho) is majoring in journalism with a 3.07 GPA. He played in all 12 events for the Cougars, leading the team with a scoring average of 73.08. He had a team-best nine top-25 finishes as a sophomore in 2016. To be eligible for selection to the academic team, a student-athlete must have a minimum 3.0 overall grade-point average and participate in at least half of their team’s scheduled regular season events.
KLAY THOMPSON IN THE LIMELIGHT May 29, 3:15 PM
Just how momentous was CouGreat Klay Thompson's 41-point, record-setting-11-makes-from-downtown effort Saturday to send the Western Conference finals to a Game 7 on Monday? So momentous that ESPN says Thompson is No. 3 all time in points scored while facing playoff elimination on the road. He surpassed Julius Irving's 40 points in the 1977 finals and sits behind George Gervin's 42 in the 1979 conference finals and LeBron James' 45 in the 2012 conference finals.
How momentous was Thompson? So momentous that analyst and Hall of Famer Charles Barkley dubbed the effort "one of the best shooting performances I've ever seen." Klay himself said, "I brought my Yoda socks to bring out my Jedi powers." Grantland writer Shea Serrano tweeted that "Klay Thompson went to OKC set all the houses and buildings on fire then flew back to GSW with a smile on his face wow the world so cold."
KLAY T WILLS WARRIORS TO DRAMATIC GAME 6 WIN May 28, 8:45 PM
Legendary Washington State basketball alum Klay Thompson turned in a game for the ages Saturday night, carrying the Golden State Warriors to a dramatic, come-from-behind Game 6 Western Conference Finals road victory over Oklahoma City as he scored 41 points and set an NBA playoff-game record for threes with 11. The Thunder led most of the game but Thompson's incredible shooting from downtown kept them close and then he scored six of his team's final eight points -- including what turned out to be the game-winning trey at 1:35 -- to pull out the 108-101 victory and send the series to a Game 7. In all, he was 14 of 30 from the field (11 of 18 from beyond the arc).
THOMPSON, WARRIORS ON THE BRINK May 25, 10:03 AM
Klay Thompson and Golden State set the all-time record for wins in an NBA season but a pair of blowout losses to Oklahoma State have the Warriors on the brink of elimination. Thompson and Golden State must now win three straight to advance to the NBA Finals, starting with Thursday night's Game 5. "Lucky for us we're going home and just got to get that win from home and go from there. Just get back to what we do best, and that's just playing with great energy on the defensive end and moving that ball on the offensive end. I know we'll show up."
WSU-UW BASEBALL GAME CANCELLED May 25, 12:12 AM
The Cougs' nonconference baseball game against Washington in Yakima on Tuesday was cancelled after both teams agreed the field conditions were too poor to play. For more, click HERE. WSU wraps up the season this weekend with a three-game series vs. Cal in Pullman.
PAC-12 REDUCES NUMBER OF NIGHT GAMES May 24, 2:32 PM
The Pac-12 has adjusted its TV contract so that as many as many as four night football games that would have been played at 7 p.m. or later will be moved to new broadcast windows at 2:30 and 6 p.m. The Pac-12 did not say what the conference gave back in return to the networks. The conference still will have a number of night kickoffs (7:00, 7:30 pm) on ESPN and Fox Sports. The Pac-12 also announced fines for court and field storming, beginning with $25,000 for first offense (and $50,000 for the second and $100,000 for the third) and eSports competition on Pac-12 Networks involving fans. You can read the entire release with more details HERE.
KLAY ALREADY ON ALL-TIME LIST May 20, 7:02 AM
Klay Thompson is completing his fifth season in the NBA but he's already on the list of 10 best 3-point shooters, says USA Today. The CouGreat's shooting percentage from behind the arc is 42 percent and his 276 treys this season is second only to Golden State teammate Steph Curry. For the full list, CLICK HERE.
COUGS CAN'T SOLVE GONZAGA May 18, 7:02 AM
Washington State dropped a 5-2 nonconference contest to Gonzaga in Pasco on Tuesday. The Cougars (17-30) received RBI-doubles from Justin Harrer and Shane Matheny but Gonzaga improved to 31-15 after putting four runs across in the second inning. WSU has gone 0-3 against Gonzaga this season, with Tuesday's game the final WSU-GU game on the schedule. The Cougars host McNeese State (26-22) for a four-game series beginning Thursday at 5 p.m.
WSU'S HAMILTON PAC-12 PITCHER OF THE WEEK May 16, 12:55 PM
Washington State junior Ian Hamilton was named Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week on Monday. Hamilton pitched six-plus innings to lead the Cougars to a 7-2 series-clinching victory at No. 14 Washington Saturday. The two-time All-Pac-12 selection leads the Cougars with 56 strikeouts, 75 innings and 13 starts this season. It is the first career Pac-12 weekly accolade for Hamilton and the second of the season for the Cougars after Trek Stemp was named Player of the Week following WSU's series victory over No. 10 Oregon State
2 COUGS ADVANCE TO U.S. OPEN SECTIONALS May 16, 12:05 PM
WSU golfers Nick Mandell and Aaron Whalen have qualified for the U.S. Open sectional qualifier, WSU reported today. Mandela, a rising senior from Kennewick, advanced Sunday from a playoff at the local qualifier in Caldwell, Idaho. And Whalen, from Ephrata, advanced after he placed second at the local qualifier in Roslyn, Wash. on May 11.
IZUNDU NOW AN AZTEC May 16, 10:30 AM
Not that there was a lot of suspense involved, but Jeff Goodman of ESPN tweeted today that former Cougar center Valentine Izundu has signed with San Diego State. A WSU faculty appeals committee found SDSU guilty of tampering with Izundu, but Cougar coach Ernie Kent recently lifted his block on Izundu transferring to SDSU. As a graduate transfer, Izundu doesn't lose a year of eligibility and can play immediately.
2 COUGS WIN TITLES AT PAC-12 CHAMPIONSHPS May 15, 9:00 PM
Two Cougars -- C.J. Allen in the 400 meter hurdles and Thane Pierson in the high jump -- claimed conference titles Sunday at the Pac-12 Track & Field Championships in Seattle.
Allen, a junior from Allyn, Wash., won with a time of 50.36 seconds. This marked the sixth men’s 400m hurdles conference title for WSU in the past nine years and the second by Allen, who also claimed the title two years ago. Pierson, a senior from Naches, Wash., won the high jump with a leap of 7-feet, 3 inches, equaling his personal record height and the seventh-best in school history.
On the women's side of the championships, WSU's Kiana Davis, a junior from Longview, was the runner-up in the high jump after clearing a height equal to her season-best of 5-feet, 8 3/4 inches -- the same height as the winner, Lisanne Hagens of Arizona, who won on fewer misses
OLD COUGAR HOOPS COACH GOES 30-3 May 15, 2:15 PM
Amazing what you can find with a little web-surfing. Former WSU basketball head coach Paul Graham guided Skyline High of Dallas to a 30-3 record and an appearance in the regional semi-finals in the just-concluded hoops season. Graham is getting back to his roots at Skyline. He was the coach at Kimball High in Dallas before embarking on a long career in college ball that included stops as an assistant coach at Oklahoma State, New Mexico, SMU and, following his 1999-2003 run as WSU's head man, Colorado and Georgia State.
ESPN SAYS KEEP AN EYE ON DOM WILLIAMS May 15 2:15 pm
Eric Williams of ESPN was asked in his Sunday mailbag which undrafted free agents with the Chargers have the best shot at making the team's 53-man roster. "A couple names to keep an eye on include receiver Dom Williams. A product of Washington State University, Williams ran a 4.38-second, 40-yard time and posted a 40.5-inch vertical at his pro day. Williams left WSU ranked third all-time with 192 catches, second all-time with 2,889 yards and second all-time with 30 touchdown catches. Williams made a couple nice plays during rookie minicamp."
WSU GRAD SHOT IN LINE OF DUTY HEADS HOME May 15, 2:00 PM
Fort Worth, Texas, police officer and 2002 WSU graduate Matt Pearce headed home a few days ago following a lengthy stay in the hospital after he was shot seven times in the line of duty. Among his well wishers was WSU coach Mike Leach, who sent him a card and Cougar gear during his hospital stay. “Thank y’all,” Pearce said in a Forth Worth Police Department video. “Anytime you think you can’t do it, just keep fighting. I did it, so anybody can do it if I can do it, that’s for sure.” Here's the full story from former CF.C correspondent Casey McNerthney of KIRO News.
DOM WILLIAMS GETTING IT DONE May 14, 4:00 PM
Garrett Sisti of BoltsfromtheBlue.com attended the San Diego Chargers' mini camp workout today and reported favorably on Cougar receiver Dom Williams, an undrafted free agent signee, in this Tweet:
... MEANWHILE, IN FLORIDA ...
LOGAN TULEY-TILLMAN INDULGING IN CHAMPAIGN? May 14, 3:30 PM
The Michigan graduate transfer who verbally committed to WSU in the last recruiting cycle but didn't sign a letter with anyone on LOI day, looks like he's hoping to land with Illinois, per this new story from WritingIllini.com.
In CF.C's last conversation with the offensive tackle in late March, he said he still considered himself a WSU commit but was planning to take a series of official visits elsewhere; he also noted that Cougar coaches "let me know that they’re still going to be recruiting other tackles while I’m taking my other visits.” Tuley-Tillman, who is from Peoria, Ill., was dismissed from the Michigan team as a result of legal woes surrounding his making of a secret sex tape.
WSU STAFF TO HEADLINE CALIFORNIA CAMP May 14, 9:20 AM
How important is it for coaches at non-urban schools to have the NCAA satellite camp restriction lifted? Consider that hundreds of high school football players in Northern California will be getting a first-hand look from WSU coach Mike Leach and his staff on June 12 when they serve as the featured guests at the TMP Elite Camp at Inderkum High in Sacramento. Inderkum, by the way, is the alma mater of former Cougar standout receiver Vince Mayle.
HIGH HONOR FOR OLD COUGAR COACH May 14 9:05 AM
The man who brought Cougar Nation some of the greatest basketball players in school history (Steve Puidokas, Don Collins, James Donaldson and Craig Ehlo to name a few) was today honored by his alma mater, Villanova, with an honorary doctorate. A year ago he was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame, so it's fair to say Coach Raveling is on a role.
FRIDAY'S TWEET OF THE NIGHT May 13, 11:59 PM
CURRY HEAPS PRAISE ON KLAY May 12 9:30 PM
In the wake of Klay Thompson's team-leading 33 points in Golden State's series-clinching round two playoff victory over Portland on Wednesday, Warriors star Steph Curry concluded his post-game press conference with high praise for his teammate from Washington State.
"Oh, wait, I've got to say one thing (about Klay). That dude had the best series I think I've ever seen him play on both ends of the floor. Defending Dame (Damian Lillard), exhausting all his energy to make it uncomfortable for him, and what he was able to do offensively ... Shout out to him for elevating his game on both ends of the floor. I had to say that. Thank you."
Thompson is averaging 27.2 points per game in the playoffs. The Warriors now will head to the Western Conference title series against the Thunder.
COUGS TO HOLD HOOP CAMPS IN JUNE May 12 NOON
Ernie Kent his WSU men's basketball team will hold a series of youth hoop camps in Pullman next month. A day camp, running June 14-17, will be held for boys and girls entering the second through eighth grades; an elite camp for boys in high school will be held June 23-24; and team camp will take place June 27-30. Click here for more details.
LISA ROMAN NAMED PAC-12 ALL-CENTURY May 11 11:31 PM
Lisa Roman, a WSU mainstay from 2010-12, has been named to the Pac-12 Women’s Rowing All-Century Team, the conference announced following selections by an expert panel. Roman, from Langley, B.C., was a two-time all-conference pick, and in 2012 earned first-team All-West and second-team All-America honors. Roman is a member of Canada’s national team, and in April helped lead the Canadian women’s eight to a silver at the World Rowing Cup at Varese, Italy.
TREK STEMP MAKES UP FOR LOST TIME May 11 10:00 PM
Fourth-year junior infielder Trek Stemp, who redshirted last season, is making the most of his return to the Cougars this season. The Kennewick High product leads the team in batting (.353), games started (40), hits (61), total bases (66) and stolen bases (12). He's fourth in RBI (15).
The Cougars (15-28) will take on league-leading Washington in a three-game series in Seattle starting Friday at 7 p.m. with TV coverage on the Pac-12 Networks.
TRI-CITIES TAILGATE SET FOR JUNE 3 May 11 9:00 PM
The largest gathering of the crimson faithful in the Mid-Columbia region each year is the Tri-Cities Tailgate. This year's event, the 19th annual, will be held June 3 in the Mesa Stadium parking lots in Pasco. Start time is 5:30 pm. For more details and for the dates and locals of other Cougar events around the state in May and June, click here.
COUGS DROP SERIES TO UTAH May 9 11:31 PM
WSU loaded the bases in the ninth inning but couldn't find that two-out base hit, falling 3-2 to Utah on Monday and losing the series 2-1. The Cougars dropped to 15-27 (8-16 Pac-12) despite a quality start from Scotty Sunitsch, who pitched five shutout innings, allowing three hits and striking out three. Washington State will hit the road for four games in Seattle beginning Wednesday at Seattle University in Bellevue, Wash. On Friday, the Cougars open a three-game series at No. 14 Washington.
DR. JOHN OLERUD TO BE HONORED May 9 9:38 PM
Dr. John Olerud will be honored by the National College Baseball Hall of Fame with the George H.W. Bush Distinguished Alumnus Award on July 16. Olerud was an All-American catcher at Washington State and helped lead the Cougars to the 1965 College World Series. Olerud then pursued a career in dermatology after balancing medical school and Minor League baseball for parts of seven summers. His son, John, who also starred at WSU, was recently named the Pac-12's Player of the Century.
QUE JOHNSON NOW A HILLTOPPER May 8 4:00 PM
ESPN's Jeff Goodman reported today that former Washington State guard/swingman Que Johnson will play his final season of college basketball at Western Kentucky. Johnson, who has one class to complete to earn his WSU degree, will be eligible to transfer and play immediately. The Hilltoppers have a brand new coach in Rick Stansbury, the long-time Mississippi State head man who spent the past two seasons as an assistant at Texas A&M.
WBKO-TV in Kentucky contacted Johnson, who told them he chose the Hilltoppers because, "I was just trying to pick the best situation to win and make it to the (NCAA) tournament. (Stansbury) just has a winning mentality about him ... That was his main pitch to me and for me to go there." Johnson averaged 11.3 points per game for the Cougars this past season.
JOE DAHL SIGNS CONTRACT WITH LIONS May 7 9:45 AM
Washington State offensive lineman Joe Dahl has signed a four-year contract with the Detroit Lions, the Detroit Free Press and others report. Terms were not disclosed, but Spotrac, a close follower of contracts in sports, pegs Dahl's contract at $2.58 million ($645,000 per year) with a $246,000 signing bonus.
THE LEGEND OF ADAM CONLEY BUILDS May 6 5:00 PM
Former Cougar pitcher Adam Conley, who is off to a blazing start this season with the Marlins, tells Eno Sarris of Fangraphs.com that his effectiveness is due in no small part to cleaned up mechanics. In this fascinating story, replete with video and photographic support, Conley says, “My mechanics last year were really messed up. I was getting my power from the wrong places,” trying to create velocity by rotating his shoulders early and releasing the ball before his front foot was on the ground.
Conley, who is 2-1 with a 3.06 ERA and 1.113 WHIP, also this week attracted the attention of CBS Sports, which dubs him baseball's newest household name. "Conley -- whose tall, lanky frame and arm action might cause you to think of Chris Sale -- has succeeded by prioritizing his low-to-mid-90s fastball," writes R.J. Anderson. "He entered Thursday night having thrown his heater nearly 70 percent of the time. The rest of the time he has thrown almost an equal amount of changeups and sliders -- and, believe it or not, that equality extends to batters of both hands."
COUGS TO PLAY IN VIRGIN ISLANDS May 6 11:32 AM
Washington State will face Creighton in the opening round of the 2016 Paradise Jam tournament in the Virgin Islands on Nov. 18, WSU SID announced Friday. Creighton went 20-15 last season, including a pair of wins in the NIT and a 79-77 regular season loss to ASU. Cougar forward Josh Hawkinson’s father, Nels Hawkinson, started the tournament in 2000. WSU will face either NC State or Montana in the second round. Other tournament participants include Loyola (Chicago), Saint Joseph’s and Oral Roberts. For more information click to paradisejam.com.
DAUGHERTY SIGNS 5TH MEMBER OF 2016 RECRUITING CLASS May 5 10:00 PM
Jovana Subasic, a 6-4 forward from Sabac, Serbia, has signed a National Letter of Intent with Washington State, Cougar women's basketball coach June Daugherty announced. Subasic becomes the fifth member of the CouGals' 2016 class, joining November signees Chanelle Molina (guard/Kailua Kona, Hawaii), Cameron Fernandez (guard/Makawao, Hawaii), Katie Campbell (guard/Oxnard, Calif.) and Kayla Washington (forward/San Bernardino, Calif.).
“We are proud to welcome a very accomplished student academically and a multi-skilled basketball player in Jovana,” Daugherty said. “She owns a seven-foot wingspan, is a great passer and has shown the ability to shoot from behind the arc and either face up or work with her back to the basket. Jovana is a wonderful addition to our recruiting class and should contribute for us immediately.”
Subasic was a member of three Serbian national teams at the U19, U18 and U16 levels. She adds to WSU's already impressive list of foreign countries represented on the roster. The other nations are Romania, Australia, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Portugal and Greece.
DARRYL PAULO SIGNS WITH TAMPA BAY May 2 7:11 PM
Former Cougar DL signed with Tampa Bay as an undrafted free agent, according to his agent's twitter feed. The 6-2, 261-pounder led the Cougs this past season with 13 1/2 tackles for loss. Paulo is the fifth Coug to sign as an undrafted free agent, joining DT Destiny Vaeao with Philadelphia, WR Dom Williams with San Diego, LB Ivan McLennan with Atlanta and LB Kache Palacio with Los Angeles. Offensive lineman Joe Dahl was selected in the fifth round on the NFL draft by Detroit.
RYAN LEAF ON MANZIEL: LIKE A MIRROR May 1 5:55 PM
Ryan Leaf said on Fox Monday that watching Johnny Manziel is sometimes “like holding up a mirror.” Leaf spoke about Manziel and what he learned from his own experience. “This happens to anybody who’s addicted to anything,” he said of Manziel. “It’s about substance abuse, it’s about whatever you use as a maladaptive behavior … it helps them numb whatever they’re feeling. And I can relate totally to what he’s going through.” You can watch the video HERE.
WSU LOSES GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY FOR SERIES WIN May 1 5:55 PM
Washington State entered the eighth inning against Oregon on Sunday with a 7-5 lead and six outs away from a series win. Instead, the Ducks scored six innings in the eighth, securing a 11-7 win in the rubber game. Washington State (14-25, 7-14 Pac-12) allowed the Ducks five hits, two walks and a hit-by-pitch in the decisive frame. Oregon (20-17, 9-9 Pac-12) got to left-handed reliever Scotty Sunitsch, who had worked four solid innings before the rally.
WSU BLANKS OREGON IN BASEBALL SERIES OPENER April 30 12:22 AM
Washington State (14-23, 7-12 Pac-12) allowed Oregon (18-17, 7-9 Pac-12) just two hits in a 4-0 series-opening win over Oregon at PK Park Friday evening. Starting pitcher Damon Jones and reliever Ryan Walker who combined to strike out nine and didn’t allow an Oregon hit until one out in the sixth Freshman catcher Ty Johnson went 4-for-4 with a pair of RBIs. Washington State scored all the runs they'd need with a three-spot in the first. The right-handed Walker dominated throughout the night, finishing with six strikeouts over six shutout innings and improving his season mark to 6-2.
Long-time CF.C message board poster Bobo6 made an astute observation afterward: "Cougs didn't give up a lot of hits Friday. Between (Adam) Conley of the Marlins and the Coug team, they gave up a combined two hits in 16-2/3 innings."
COUGAR HOOPS BRINGING FANS CLOSER April 29 7:50 PM
Washington State will close the upper bowl of Beasley this coming basketball season and drop prices in nine sections of the lower bowl, the school announced late Friday. “We realize this is a change from previous years, however, a full lower bowl will greatly improve the gameday atmosphere and provide a better experience for our players, coaches and fans,” said WSU Deputy Director of Athletics Mike Marlow. For all the details, including info for current season ticket holders in the upper bowl, CLICK HERE.
WSU-BOISE STATE LOCKED IN FOR SATURDAY SEPT. 10 April 29 2:50 PM
Speculation that that this fall's WSU football game at Boise State might be moved to a Thursday or Friday has proven for naught. B.J. Rains, the BSU beat writer for the Idaho Press-Tribune, tweeted today that the game is locked in solid for Saturday, Sept. 10. No kickoff time given. In looking at other games around the nation that day, Rains opines that it's conceivable the Cougs and Broncs may get some College Gameday consideration.
LIA GALDIERA REMAINS A CHARACTER April 29 2:00 PM
Former WSU women's basketball scoring wizard Lia Galdeira took part in her first media day today with the Washington Mystics of the WNBA. Rest assured, playing overseas this past season hasn't dampened her colorful personality. In this video clip she sings a little Bieber, talks about her various tattoos ("eagles don't fly with pigeons" BTW), and flexes for the camera. Galdeira was the 19th overall pick in the recent WNBA draft. She averaged 23 points per game this past season playing professionally in Europe after foregoing her senior year at WSU.
SERVICES FOR FORMER COUG LINEMAN NEXT WEEK April 29 1:52 PM
How devout a Cougar was Mike Smith, a WSU football player from 1987-90? So devout that his obituary begins and ends with one thing: The Cougar fight song. Smith came to Pullman from Auburn, Wash., and was part of a line that helped the Cougs produce big offensive numbers under Dennis Erickson and Mike Price. He passed away April 23. A rosary vigil will be held May 5 in Renton and a funeral mass on May 6 in Des Moines. Details here.
REST EASY WITH LEFT SIDE OF COUGAR OL, SAYS BAKER April 29 1:00 PM
One of the biggest question marks for the Cougars' 2016 football season is the left side of the offensive line since multi-year starters Joe Dahl and Gunnar Eklund have gradated. But the performance of the left side, with Andre Dillard at tackle and Cody O'Connell at guard, was one of the best story lines coming out of the recently completed spring practices, says CF.C beat writer and former WSU receiver Tyler Baker. You can find his full remarks and other takeaways from spring ball in this video clip.
KLAY THOMPSON ON FIRE IN SERIES-CLINCHER April 27 10:45 PM
For the second-straight game, Washington State great Klay Thompson canned 7 three-pointers (an NBA playoff first) and scored 27 points to lead his Golden State Warriors to a series-clinching 114-81 victory over Houston on Wednesday. He averaged 23.4 points per game in the series and didn't play in the fourth quarter of this one. The Warriors, who are without Steph Curry, will now face the winner of the Clippers-Blazers series.
KENNEDY CATHOLIC LOADS UP STAFF WITH OLD COUGS April 27 2:45 PM
Sheldon Cross, the new head coach at Kennedy Catholic High in Burien and a one-time graduate assistant at Washington State, is going crimson with his staff. Among his new assistant coaches, the Seattle Times reported Wednesday, are former Cougar footballers Derek Sparks, Tim Stallworth and Nolan Washington. Sparks, who spent the past two seasons turning around Garfield High in Seattle, will serve as associate head coach. CF.C has learned that Garfield QB Max Nall is planning to follow Sparks to Kennedy.
Sparks played at WSU from 1991-95; Washington from 2010-13; and Stallworth from 1986-89, during which time he led the Pac-10 in receiving one season and earned third-team All-America honors.
DAMNING WIAA REPORT ON BELLEVUE HIGH April 26 12:37 PM
The WIAA has issued a scathing investigative report on Bellevue High, saying the coaches violated rules for years and the district obstructed the investigation. Bellevue, the preeminent football program in the state for the past decade-plus, winning 11 Class 3A state titles between 2001-15. For the Seattle Times article including a link to the 68-page report, CLICK HERE.
QUE JOHNSON NARROWS LIST TO 4 April 26 1:00 AM
ESPN basketball writer Jeff Goodman tweeted Sunday that former Cougar basketball player Que Johnson, who will graduate in May and then transfer for his final season of eligibility, has narrowed his list of possible new schools to Boise State, Nevada, Western Kentucky and Alabama.
DOJ INVESTIGATING NCAA SATELLITE CAMP BAN April 25 5:11 PM
The U.S. Department of Justice has begun an informal inquiry into the NCAA'S recent ban on coaches attending satellite football camps for high school prospects, USA Today reports. The DOJ's interest is based on whether the NCAA ban jeopardizes or lessens opportunities for young players to be seen or have access to college football coaches. For more, CLICK HERE.
THE DAY BLEDSOE MADE COUGAR HISTORY April 25 12:20 PM
The Pac-12 Networks tweeted an interesting bit of conference trivia this morning: 23 years ago today Cougar quarterbacking great Drew Bledsoe was the No. 1 overall pick in the 1993 NFL draft. He went to the New England Patriots. Four years later he had the team in the Super Bowl. Following later stints with the Bills and Cowboys, he retired in 2006 with a shopping 44,611 career passing yards and 251 TDs.
Bledsoe is the lone Cougar to go No. 1 in the NFL draft, but 12 others were first rounders: Deone Bucannon, Marcus Trufant, Ryan Leaf, Mark Fields, Timm Rosenbach, Steve Broussard, Keith Millard, Jack Thompson, Ken Greene, Clancy Williams, Ed Barker and Ed Goddard.
WHAT DO JOE DAHL & DREW BLEDSOE HAVE IN COMMON? April 24 7:00 PM
In an interview the other day with NFLmocks.com, Cougar offensive lineman Joe Dahl said the coach who had the biggest impact on him was his high school head man, Bill Diedrick. If that name sounds familiar, it should. Bill was WSU's offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach in 1989 and '90 before moving on to the Edmonton Eskimos of the CFL. 1990 was the year he and Mike Price decided to burn the redshirt of a freshman QB named Drew Bledsoe. Diedrick later served as offensive coordinator at Stanford, Notre Dame and Washington but concluded his long career where it began -- in the Greater Spokane League -- by taking the helm at University High during Dahl's wonder years.
Dahl, who is expected to be taken in the upper rounds of the NFL draft later this week, also was asked by NFLmocks.com to ID the strangest question he's been asked by NFL teams. "Nothing too crazy," Dahl said, then noting he was asked how he could make 48 cents out six coins.
COUGS TAKE SERIES FINALE VS. USC April 24 5:59 PM
Shane Matheny homered and drove in a career-high five runs while sophomore relief pitcher Scotty Sunitsch fired five innings as Washington State routed USC 9-2 in Pullman on Sunday in the final game of a three-game series. WSU's Trek Stemp extended his hitting streak to 10 games. The Cougars dropped the first two contests in the series, but Sunday's victory improves their record to 13-23 overall and 6-12 in Pac-12 play. The Cougars head to Oregon next weekend for a three-game series.
JEFF TUEL CALLING IT A CAREER April 22 11:40 PM
Scrappy former Cougar quarterback Jeff Tuel is calling it a day on his pro career, his agent, Reign Sports, Tweeted on Friday. Tuel signed with Buffalo as an undrafted free agent in 2013 and played in two regular-season games that season for the Bills, starting one. He spent 2014 on the Bills' practice squad and most of the 2015 season on the Jaguars' practice squad. From 2009-12 he passed for nearly 6,000 yards for the Cougars.
MARKS PEGGED NATION'S TOP PASS CATCHER April 22 10:02 PM
David Kenyon of Bleacher Report is out with his forecast of the 10 most prolific pass catchers in college football for 2016 and WSU's Gabe Marks is No. 1 on the list. Marks finished fourth in the nation last season with 104 grabs. Kenyon says Dom Williams' departure will garner Marks even more attention from Luke Falk. Kenyon offers little solace to opposing defenses when it comes to Marks: "Good luck stopping him." Marks, he concludes, "will be college football's most productive wideout in 2016."
IZUNDU'S TRANSFER TO SDSU BLOCKED BY WSU April 20 8:15 PM
A WSU faculty committee upheld the blocking of Valentine Izundu's transfer to SDSU, saying, "the committee felt that tampering has taken place (improper communication through a third party)," according to the Spokesman-Review. Ernie Kent alleged the Aztecs had "tampered" with Izundu's transfer process, contacting him before the season had ended when Izundu and Que Johnson traveled down to San Diego during spring break.
BASEBALL: COUGS FALL TO ZAGS April 20 5:55 AM
Washington State dropped a 7-4 nonconference contest to visiting Gonzaga at Bailey-Brayton Field on Tuesday evening. Washington State (12-21) matched Gonzaga (22-12) in hits but committed three errors. The Cougars led 3-2 in the sixth before the Bulldogs pushed three runs across in the sixth and added two more in the seventh.
SCHOOLS CAN NOW PAY FOR RECRUITS' PARENTS April 19 6:57 PM
A new rule passed by the NCAA will allow schools to pay the actual roundtrip costs for a prospective student-athlete's parents or legal guardians to accompany the prospect on his official visit. The new rule also specifies funds will be available for meals for the parents or guardians. The rule will go into effect August 1 and be in place for this recruiting cycle. The vote passed 14-1 with the Sun Belt Conference voting against it, according to the NCAA's Division I Council report. Prospective student-athletes are permitted to take five official visits starting on the first day of classes of the prospective student-athlete's senior year.
KLAY LEADS CURRY-LESS WARRIORS TO 2-0 EDGE April 18 10:15 PM
Washington State great Klay Thompson scored 34 points Monday to lead his Golden State Warriors to a 115-106 victory over Houston and a 2-0 advantage in the first-round playoff series. The Warriors were without Steph Curry, who sat with a tweaked ankle. Thompson's stat line was fueled by 15 of 16 accuracy from the free throw line.
TIA PRESLEY CAPTURES PRO TITLE April 18 5:05 PM
Former Washington State scoring wizard Tia Presley and her Maccabi Ashdod team yesterday won the Israeli professional title. Maccabi Ashdod made it a clean sweep in this rookie season for Presley -- they also won their regular-season league championship. She averaged 5.2 points and 13.2 minutes per game this season.