Foot talk: Ahmu, kickers center of discussion

PULLMAN -- Before the Cougs took to the turf for a short and light workout Thursday, head coach Bill Doba hit the pressroom to shed some light on Feveae'i Ahmu's foot injury and to announce that, contrary to an earlier statement, he would indeed be taking two placekickers to Auburn, with the starter likely not determined until game time.

Romeen Abdollmohammadi, the walk on, and Loren Langley, the two-year starter, apparently will extend their see-saw battle for the starter's role right to the last possible moment.

"We'll take both kickers and see how they warm up," said Doba, who previously stated he would take only one kicker and use the other travel spot for a position player.

In trying to decide which kicker will play, Doba is not lacking for input. He said Shawn Deeds, WSU's director of football operations, told him the turf at Auburn is similar to the fringe around a golf course putting green. Doba also talked to Abdollmohammadi's prep soccer coach.

"Loren can do a lot of things well. If he's on, he's our kicker ...(Romeen) did a real nice job in the preseason, in the spring, under pressure he was on the money. And then the last couple weeks it's been a pretty fair fight."

At the end of practice Wednesday evening, Doba clearly was looking for one of the kickers to take control when he had each attempt seven field goals with the entire team on the sidelines hollering. They each made four.

The battle for the starting nod was a proverbial see-saw match all camp, as the junior Langley looked to perform slightly better in the practices, while his Abdollmohammadi had the edge in the three scrimmages.

At practice Thursday, Abdollmohammadi spent the majority of the session working on kickoffs. He started slowly but then sent several impressive kicks down the field.

In regard to Ahmu, Doba said the true sophomore who had won the starting defensive tackle spot over incumbent Aaron Johnson, is likely not going to travel with the team to Auburn. "He's doing an X-Ray (Thursday night) and if it's cracked all the way through, we lose him for the season. Right now, (it looks to be) just a hairline fracture."

PRACTICE NOTES:

The Cougs dressed down once again Thursday, donning only shorts, jerseys and helmets. Some of those jerseys, however, were swapped. Mkristo Bruce donned Chris Jordan's No. 2, offensive tackle Charles Harris was wearing Michael Bumpus' No. 5 while Bumpus wore Harris' No. 55. Center Josh Duin was wearing tight end Cody Boyd's No. 80.

The offense moved the action from Rogers Field to Martin Stadium immediately following stretches Thursday. The rest of the team joined them about half-way through practice. The team ran through various non-contact drills.

Kickoff on Saturday is set for 4:45 Pacific Time. The game will be televised live on ESPN2. No. 4-ranked Auburn is a 15 1/2-point favorite.

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