PRACTICE: Gordon shreds D in TNF scrimmage

PULLMAN – Heavy rains poured over Martin Stadium during Washington State's Thursday practice and scrimmage. That didn’t dampen the energy of the young guys who strapped it up for another round of Thursday Night Football. The past two TNF scrimmages have seen the defense dominate. Not this time around. WSU's offense got their revenge as they stormed up and down the field all night long.

Here’s who had the best performances by position:

MVP – Anthony Gordon (QB)

-       Freshman Anthony Gordon (pictured above) was picking up big chunks of yards as he consistently moved the offense. From his first play of scrimmage, Gordon hit Keith Harrington for a 17-yard gain. A few plays later, he connected with Romellow Harris for another 20-yard pickup. Later on he found Dezmon Patmon on back-to-back throws for gains of 13 and 15-yards. The very next play, Gordon hit Brandon Acronado for huge 33-yard bomb then capped off the drive with a 13-yard touchdown strike to Grant Porter.

WR - Grant Porter

-      Grant Porter, a freshman, made clutch plays several times during this week’s TNF. He caught a handful of balls as well as two touchdown receptions which came in big situations. One of Porter’s clutch moments came on the last play of the day. The Cougar offense attempted to convert a fourth-and-goal from the 13-yard line. Gordon dropped back and scanned the defense looking for an open man. He found Porter wide open in the back of the end zone who hauled in the clutch catch for a score. A few drives earlier in the day, Porter pulled in a 9-yard TD catch from Trey Tinsley.

RB – Keith Harrington

-       All three backs (Harrington, Alijah Lee, and Romello Harris) deserve recognition here, but I had to give it to Harrington after all the juking and dodging that he did out on the field. From spin moves, to broken tackles, to broken ankles, Harrington set out to make big plays. He made several catches out of the backfield and turned them into huge gains. Harrington also carried the rock multiple times for big pickups.

OL - Christian Haangana

-       The TNF offensive line has had some struggles in recent weeks, but this week they played outstanding. Freshman guard Christian Haangana showed how he can really dominate his opponent using all 6-4, 374 pounds he brings to the party. Haangana, along with some other impressive linemen, consistently opened up huge holes allowing plenty of running room for all three backs. Haangana’s pass protection was exceptional as well. He looks to be getting much better with his feet and moving to stay in front of defenders.

DL – Taylor Comfort

-       There wasn’t a lot of action across the defensive line this week. The unit was pushed around for the first time in a TNF scrimmage I’ve noticed this entire season. One positive came when third-year sophomore defensive lineman Taylor Comfort made a big play that easily deserved him this spot. On a pass play that started to break down, Comfort seemingly came out of nowhere and broke through the offensive line to quickly pounce on Gordon for a sack. 

DB – Darrius Lemora

-       Fourth-year junior Lemora managed the defense's only takeaway on the day when he intercepted a pass from Gordon that was lobbed up into the back of the end zone. Lemora had his man covered like a blanket and high pointed the ball to come down with a pick. He also made some solid open field tackles that saved several short plays from becoming explosive ones.

LB – Jahad Woods

-       I’m not sure that any other linebacker has yet to out-perform Woods in a TNF scrimmage. He continues to showcase his athleticism and talent at the linebacker position. The guy is an animal on the field and a huge hitter when he makes contact. On one play, Woods chased down third-year sophomore running back Alijah Lee after he had reached the second level. Woods delivered a pop and the ball was instantly knocked loose for a second, however, Lee quickly recovered. That effort showed how much punch this kid can pack in every hit.

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