Earlier in the week, Doba indicated senior Lance Broadus was rounding into form after missing all of fall camp and the season opener, and would probably start in place of Mike Graise, who is himself nursing a finger injury.
But it has been Kooyman who has been working with the No. 1 defense this week, Broadus with the twos. Graise has seen limited action on the practice field. Junior Jesse Feagin, who Doba singled out earlier this week as starting to show some good things coming off the edge, worked with the No. 2 defense as well.
All three will travel and play, Walker said. Broadus, is still working into playing shape and Kooyman could fill his spot until that happens.
THE FIVE WHO sat out Tuesday's session with a variety of bumps and bruises -- wide receiver Michael Bumpus, running back Dwight Tardy, offensive tackle Micah Hannam, defensive end Mike Graise and cornerback Brian Williams -- returned to the practice field on Wednesday.
The Cougs held a helmets-only session under cooler skies than are expected Saturday when they take on the No.1 ranked USC Trojans in Los Angeles.
Defensive tackle Matt Eichelberger, however, watched from the sidelines. Eichelberger sprained his knee in Tuesday's session and appears unlikely to travel with the team this weekend, Walker said.
If Ike doesn't go, the Cougs' backup situation would feature junior Fevaea'i Ahmu and then freshman Toby Turpin in Eichelberger's spot, another youngster who received praise from Bill Doba on Monday. True freshman B.J. Guerra remains on "red alert" were additional attrition at tackle to occur.
USC BRINGS into Saturday a potent offense that carries with it a plethora of running backs designed to give a defense fits. Defending the run will be a difficult task for the Cougar defense, said Walker.
"We're gonna have to fill the holes," Walker said.
Stafon Johnson, C.J. Gable and Chauncey Washington all figure to see plenty of snaps and will no doubt challenge the WSU defense.
Seven USC backs have carried the ball three times or more this season while WSU has four running backs with carries.