Michael Bumpus's Diary: Week Five

PULLMAN -- It was almost exactly one year ago that I arrived at Washington State. I had decided to come up early to get a head start on things, and I was very nervous. But when I saw who was there to greet me when I touched down at the Spokane airport, I knew everything was going to be okay.

I had never been away from home for so long and I wasn't sure how well I would adjust to what I thought would be a slower change of pace here in Pullman. My main concerns really centered around how well I would fit into the college environment.

But as soon as I arrived at the airport in Spokane, I was greeted by Josh Swogger and he reassured me that things would be cool.

And I knew then that things were going to work out. If a veteran would drive an hour and a half to an airport just to pick me up, I knew things were going to be okay here.

I WAS VERY surprised that the fans grew so fond of me so quickly. WSU carries with it a tradition of great players, and I knew the expectations for me would be way up there. I arrived here with a lot of recruiting hype, and I wanted to back that up -- I didn't want to disappoint the Cougar Nation.

I've never played for a team who is as well supported as the Cougs. For me, there was this very strong sense that I just didn't want to let anyone down. When the fans get behind you so quickly as they did with me, it makes things a whole lot easier.

As players, we're highly dedicated to the Washington State program. Year after year, virtually everyone stays in Pullman for the summer's voluntary workouts. But the alumni and fans are also highly dedicated. Their support and love of Cougar Football is plain to see. And we, the football team, really appreciate their support.

I GOT A CHANCE to talk with Fevaea'i Ahmu the other day. It's great to see so many of these guys coming in early.

And from one conversation with this guy, I can already tell Ahmu is really focused and ready to work.

I'm in the weight room hitting the iron at the crack of dawn, and even though Ahmu hadn't yet started his workouts here at WSU, he was still right there at that most early of hours, taking mental reps of everything we were doing.

This is typical for the kind of player we recruit and has been for some time. They get so fired up, they can't wait to touch the field, they can't wait to work. That's how I and every other recruit in the 2004 class felt last year.

And its clear that Ahmu and the rest of the guys in this class feel the same.

Thanks for reading, and if you have any questions, post them on the Cougfan.com message boards and I'll do my best to answer them.

Michael Bumpus is a sophomore receiver and return man from Culver City, Calif., where he was a first-team "Best in the West" pick by the Long Beach Press-Telegram. As a WSU freshman in 2004, he set a school record for punt return yardage and earned a place on The Sporting News' Pac-10 All-Freshman Team. Along with defensive end Mkristo Bruce, he graciously volunteered to lend CF.C readers a window unto the world of pre-season Cougar football preparation with a weekly diary.

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