Stars coming out for WSU dinner in Seattle

BRANDON GIBSON, fresh off a 34-catch NFL rookie season, will be on hand. So will Ryan Leaf. And that's just a sampling of the Cougar luminaries that WSU fans will be able to rub shoulders with Feb. 12 when the King County Cougar Club holds its annual football coaches dinner and auction in Seattle.

The event will cap a whirlwind of Cougar gatherings that follow National Letter of Intent Signing Day. Paul Wulff and staff will kick things off with a "signing day party" Feb. 3 in Spokane. From there it's on to dinners in the Tri-Cities on Feb. 5, the South Puget Sound area on Feb. 10, and then Seattle on the 12th.

The Seattle gathering will be held at the Marriott Waterfront. Social hour starts at 5 p.m., followed by dinner and program. In addition to Gibson and Leaf, Cougar standouts of the past who are set to attend include Jed Collins, Mkristo Bruce, Jason Gesser, Jack Thompson and Robbie Tobeck.

Another WSU Hall of Famer, 1950s running back Duke Washington, will also be on hand. He's not coming as a celebrity, though. He's coming as a fan who knows it's one of the great nights to be a Cougar.

A year ago, he attended his first "Night with Cougar Football" in Seattle. He was so impressed by the up-close chance to visit with WSU coaches and former stars that he vowed afterward to make the gathering a must-do every year.

Contacted by CF.C a week ago to see if he was going to follow through on his pledge, he was adamant: "Absolutely. That is one of the most enjoyable evenings any Cougar could ask for. No one should miss it."

The evening includes Wulff's player-by-player run down -- and video highlights -- of the new recruiting class, as well as a question-and-answer session.

The cost is $85 per person or $65 for young alumni (30 and below). Proceeds go to WSU's athletic scholarship fund.

HERE ARE THE DETAILS ON THE OTHER THREE EVENTS:

•Feb. 3, Spokane: National Letter of Intent Signing Day Party, at Northern Quest, 6 p.m. WSU Hall of Fame members Mark Rypien, Gail Cogdill, and Keith Lincoln are scheduled to be on hand.

•Feb. 5, Tri-Cities: A Night With Cougar Football, at Meadow Springs Country Club in Richland, 6 p.m. Jason Gesser will be there.

•Feb. 10, South Puget Sound: Night with Cougar Football, at Little Creek Casino in Shelton, 5 p.m.

For more information on the Spokane and Tri-Cities events contact Lori Olson at 509-358-7541 or olsonl@wsu.edu. For more information on the South Sound and Seattle events contact Todd Thrasher at 206-448-1330 or tthrasher@wsuwest.edu. To register online any of the four events, click to https://www.athletics.wsu.edu/foundation/nightwithcougarfootball.asp.

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