Honors, stats roll up for Cougs

MKRISTO BRUCE, rightfully, has been the subject of most talk this season when it comes to the Cougs and impressive statistics. But in addition to the big defensive end chasing the national sacks title and WSU career record, two other Cougs -- Eric Frampton and Michael Bumpus -- are making a numerical name for themselves. Plus, Frampton and punter Darryl Blunt named Pac-10 Players of Week.

Frampton, the Pac-10's defensive player of the week, led WSU with a game- and career-high 16 tackles (nine solo) including one for loss in the Cougars' victory over Oregon on Saturday. He also broke up a pass. The senior safety from San Jose now has 74 total tackles for the year -- a 9.25 average per game, ranking him among the 30 most prolific tacklers in the nation.

Frampton, who led the Cougars in tackles last season with 87, becomes the third Cougar to be named Pac-10 defensive player of the week this season, joing Bruce and linebacker Scott Davis.

Blunt, the Pac-10's special teams player of the week, is a sophomore from Los Angeles. He averaged 49.3 yards on three punts, with a long of 62 yards and two punts downed inside the 10-yard line, including one on the 1-yard line. He is averaging 41.7 yards, ranking him No. 29 in the nation.

WSU freshman running back Dwight Tardy, who racked up 145 rushing yards, scored one TD and caught three passes, was nominated for offensive player of the week. Tardy now has 430 ground yards this season (4.9 yards per carry), ranking ninth-best in the Pac-10.

Elsewhere on the stats front, WSU junior receiver Michael Bumpus, who caught seven passes against Oregon, has 52 receptions on the season -- that's tops in the Pac-10 and ties him for No. 6 nationally. Bumpus is on pace to break the WSU single-season record for receptions, 72, set by Nakoa McvElrath in 2001. Second on the school's all-time single-season list is Bumpus' position coach (and Cougar offensive coordinator) Mike Levenseller, who caught 67 balls in 1976.

* WSU is ranked No. 25 in this week's BCS ratings. The Cougars were last in the BCS standings in 2003, when they won 10 games and defeated heavily favored Texas in the Holiday Bowl.

* As prolific as his tackling has been this season, Cougar safety Eric Frampton isn't a threat to break the WSU single-season record. In 1986, linebacker Brian Forde registered 157 total stops. Frampton currently has 74.

* Oddsmakers have installed the Cougars as one-point favorites when they meet UCLA this Saturday in Pasadena. Kickoff is at 4 pm and ABC will be televising.

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