Cougar Football:'s newest Washington State depth chart projection, hot off the presses

PULLMAN -- How do the position battles stack up with just 11 days before Washington State’s season opener?’s man on the ground, Skyler Cracraft, breaks it all down.


1.     Luke Falk
2.     Tyler Hilinski
Falk and Hilinski are firmly set as the starter and No. 2 on the depth chart. Behind them, a pair of JUCO transfers, walk on Trey Tinsley and Anthony Gordon are being evaluated every day by the coaches to see who will fill that backup No. 3 emergency spot. I would assume that Mike Leach would likely to redshirt both Gordon and Tinsley if he can. At the moment, Tinsley in my view has the slight edge but the race is still too close to call for that No. 3 job.
1.     Jamal Morrow
2.     Gerard Wicks
3.     James Williams
The running back rotation is now a lot more consistent than what we saw at the beginning of fall camp. Morrow and Wicks are evenly splitting reps with the 1’s, and Williams is taking the remainder. (Keith Harrington is now at H, but could still be used in the backfield if need be, if say one of the three got dinged up).
1.     Gabe Marks
2.     Isaiah Johnson
3.     Kaleb Fossum
These three are the clear cut guys at the Z. Marks and Johnson will of course likely take most of the snaps this year, but Fossum is a player that can have some catches as well.
1.     River Cracraft
2.     John Thompson
There’s really no position battle at Y. River is the starter but both guys will rotate, and if one happens to go down (knock on wood) my take is true freshman Renard Bell, who has shown some good early development in fall camp, would likely be the next man up.
1.     Robert Lewis
2.     Kyle Sweet
3.     Keith Harrington
The same goes with H as does with Y and perhaps more so -- both guys figure to rotate and see plenty of playing time. Lewis and Sweet are the two taking most reps at H in practice but the coaches also clearly want to get Harrington some touches.
1.     Tavares Martin
2.     Dezmon Patmon/C.J. Dimry
Martin, in my view, is now the clear starter here, but the backup is yet to be defined. Dimry isn’t in the mix right now. But if he can get healthy enough to be back for the opener it's likely that he will take reps in at the 2's with Patmon. Again, important to remember all of the receivers can play different spots in Leach’s Air Raid and that Leach uses an 8-man rotation on game days at the four spots.
This is how the depth chart on the O-line played out during the second scrimmage on Saturday:

1.     Andre Dillard
2.     Cody O’Connell

1.     Cody O’Connell
2.     Drew Norvell

1.     Riley Sorenson
2.     Frederick Mauigoa

1.     Eduardo Middleton
2.     B.J. Salmonson

1.     Cole Madison
2.     Eduardo Middleton
On the o-line, my view is that if a guard or tackle were to miss time, Salmonson would likely be first off bench (with Norvell also battling to be in the mix). If WSU needed to bring someone in at center for Sorenson, true freshman Mauigoa is the likely replacement from my chair.


1.     Hercules Mata’afa
2.     Nnamdi Oguayo / Garret McBroom / Derek Moore / Kingston Fernandez
Mata’afa is a definite starter at the end spot, to no one's surprise. Behind him has been a rotation of Oguayo, McBroom, Moore, and Fernandez, in that order. All four have seen significant reps with the 2’s this fall camp.
Nose tackle
1.     Robert Barber
2.     Ngalu Tapa
Barber is the man in the middle, but Tapa will also be a key body to have rotate in at nose.
1.     Daniel Ekuale
2.     Jeremiah Mitchell / Hercules Mata’afa / Garret McBroom
Ekuale is the clear starter, with Mitchell showing a few flashes here and there. It will be intriguing to see the amount of rotation here and how Mitchell, a fifth-year senior, performs in his last rodeo.

*D-LINE NOTE:  Almost every player on the defensive line is interchangeable at each position. Mata’afa, Barber, Ekuale, McBroom and others have often lined up at varying spots.
1.     Logan Tago (pictured above)
2.     Dylan Hanser
Tago and Hanser have been dishing this one out all camp long. It has been a back and forth battle of who gets reps with the 1's. It’s probably close to even with the amount of reps they have been getting with the starters. I’m not even sure that it really matters at this point because to me, it looks like they will likely see about the same amount of reps. Still, there are 11 more days before the opener and several more practices before the opener.
1.     Isaac Dotson
2.     Nate Derider
While projected starter Frankie Luvu awaits his full recovery, Dotson has filled in well with the 1’s.  Behind him, DeRider offers good athleticism and size as a backup.
1.     Peyton Pelluer
2.     Paris Taylor
3.     Jahad Woods
Pelluer is the clear starter and Taylor is the clear No. 2.  But true freshman Woods, who has a world of athleticism, has been getting many more reps with the 2's recently. Stay tuned on this battle in the two-deeps.
1.     Parker Henry
2.     Kirkland Parker
The two Parkers are a combo deal. Henry, in my view, is likely to be used on the vast majority all-purpose downs -- he has shown a big improvement in his ability to cover the pass and run this fall camp in my book. Kirkland appears likely to be used in, say, more of a dime package because he has more of a corner's skill set.
1.     Shalom Luani
2.     Willie Roach / Hunter Dale
Roach, a walk on, and Dale, a second-year sophomore, have been really slugging it out all camp long to find that spot behind Luani. They continue to rotate with the 2’s and could do so through the season. Luani, meanwhile, could be in for a big year.
1.     Jalen Thompson
2.     Charleston White
Thompson, a true freshman, hasn’t budged from the starting strong safety position in my view, but White has definitely made his case in camp after missing the first few days. Thompson is a great athlete and a really good tackler, but White to me looks more aggressive in coverage when the ball is in the air.
1.     Darrien Molton
2.     Marcellus Pippins
The two starters at corner from last year are now running 1-2 on one of the islands. Molton might be the best corner on the team, but Pippins has proven that he can play at a high Pac-12 level as well.
1.     Treshon Broughton
2.     Robert Taylor
This position battle will be one to watch for the rest of camp, and as the season unfolds. Taylor took over the starting role early in camp, but Broughton - arguably the surprise of fall call,  has made a comeback and has been running with the 1’s for about a week now. Anything can happen with the two once the Cougs start playing games. Taylor started at safety and could still play there, but it looks like for now he's settling in at corner.

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