Marshall Lobbestael's Diary: Week 4

PULLMAN -- Hey CougFans, it's my last diary of the summer for CF.C. We kicked off our last week of voluntary workouts Monday and are trying to finish this summer working as hard as possible. We're all getting pumped for fall camp and hope you guys are, too! Since summer is winding down, I'll try to answer as many questions as possible with this last column.

Here goes ...

Is there a guy or two who has particularly impressed you so far this offseason with his work ethic at running back?

No doubt Chantz Staden is leading that position group from a work ethic and intensity standpoint.

This doesn't come as a surprise and is something that we as a team have came to learn about him, but he's the type of guy who is going to do whatever it takes to get himself in the best position to help the team win.

Through workouts and practices he has looked very good running and catching the ball and I know he can't wait for the start of the season.

Who are some of the veteran receivers you think might raise their game to a new level this year?

I think that all of them will. This is a pretty broad answer, but every one of them works hard and knows what we have to do to be successful. Also, with the younger guys pushing them and another year of experience under their belts, all of them can raise their game to a new level.

The coaches think a lot of (offensive lineman) Tyson Pencer's potential. How is he doing this offseason?

Pence is doing great. He'll be ready to go come fall camp and has packed on some very useful weight for the season. One thing I think that needs to be acknowledged is the amount of work he put forth academically in the spring. He took some time out of spring ball that helped him get back on track and in one class I think he got one of the highest final grades -- so he's been working hard on and off the field in the offseason.

Do you see (tight ends) Skylar Stormo and Andrei Lintz making big strides in the season to come?

I see them both making big strides this season. Both are more experienced, have another year in the offense and in the weight room, and both are competitors.

Lintz didn't get as much time on the field as Storm did last year, but he's looking very good running routes and catching the ball so far this summer. I think Stormo looks bigger/stronger every time I see him. Look for him to be moving some people off the ball come fall camp.

How well do you and Jeff Tuel get along?

I'm glad I have the chance to answer this because I wonder about other teams and how they get along within a position group. We get along very well. As a whole, the QB position group -- which also includes David Gilbertson, Dan Wagner and Connor Halliday -- gets along very well.

Since Jeff arrived last summer he's been open to advice, but also speaks up when he sees something that can make you better. It's a fun group of guys to be around and he handled everything that happened last season with class.

Jeff knows I have his back, I know he has mine - and Wags and Gilb are the same way. I think being close and having a good relationship with each other is very important on a football team and Jeff and I, as well as the whole position group, have that.

And to add to the answer, Connor has fit right in so far and it will be fun for us all to get to know him better during fall camp.

Cougar quarterback Marshall Lobbestael hails from Oak Harbor, where he was named the 2006 state Class 4A Player of the Year by the Associated Press and Seattle Times after leading Oak Harbor to its first-ever state championship game. During his Cougar career, he has earned a Pac-10 offensive player weekly award and has started six games, while playing in 14. Back healthy now following a knee injury that ended his '08 season, he has passed for 1,226 yards with seven touchdowns.

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