A GRIP ON SPORTS
Happy Easter. Read on.
From Pullman — Happy Easter, everybody. I hope you're enjoying your chocolate goodies. We've got some links for you to peruse while the children tear up your neighborhood in the relentless pursuit of multicolored eggs.
The Huskies finished off the year with a Spring Game that wasn't … Ted Miller gives his thoughts on Washington's legal troubles and more in his mailbag (sorry Vince) … USC's Spring Game was a cautious affair … The Bruins are ready to feast, with the NCAA's blessing.
S-R photojournalist Dan Pelle covered the Cleveland Gladiators' win over the Spokane Shock, 52-50, April 19, 2014, in the Spokane Arena. Check out this big picture gallery of his photos!
Losses don't come much tougher than the one Spokane experienced Saturday night.
The Shock scored with 10 seconds left to take a 50-46 lead, but Cleveland connected on arena football's version of the Hail Mary, a desperation heave into the netting at the back of the end zone on the final play to pull out a 52-50 victory.
Thyron Lewis pulled in the game-winning 29-yard pass after the ball had rebounded off the netting.
My unedited game story is below.
From Pullman — Washington State held the first of its three official “scrimmages” on Saturday, running 115 plays at full speed. Each school is allowed 12 contact practices, eight of which may involve tackling. No more than three of those eight tackling sessions can devote more than 50 percent of the practice time to 11-on-11 scrimmages, including the spring game.
Our practice report is after the jump.
Idaho didn't run (quite) as many plays, and the offense didn't have quite as many touchdowns. But coach Paul Petrino was pleased after the Vandals' third scrimmage of the spring in the Kibbie Dome. We have video of Petrino's full comments to the media after the jump. We also have an early version of our story and notes on the Vandals' occasionally dominant defensive line.
UI, by the way, ran 143 plays after going through 190 in the first scrimmage and 173 last week. Idaho also had 11 penalties, at least of which one or two were waived off.
Spokane concludes a two-game homestand when Cleveland (4-0) visits the Arena tonight.
Here's my game preview.
The well-traveled Kyle Rowley, now with Portland, and the Thunder came up short against San Jose.
A GRIP ON SPORTS
As the good ship Mariner slowly sinks in the west, let's take a moment to be thankful for some of the good things out there. Read on.
From Pullman — Some good news for the Washington State football team came down last night when Austin Joyner announced his intentions to play for the Cougars. Joyner is listed as a four-star running back but it appears he'll play cornerback at WSU. Yesterday we also posted some notes following an interview with athletic director Bill Moos.
In other Pac-12 news Washington unveiled its new football uniforms and they sure are uniforms … An Arizona basketball recruit's prep career is ending with a bang … A departing Oregon assistant is going to get a quarter million dollars every year from the public employee pension fund … Gonzaga added a head-to-head series against UCLA.
UPDATE: Somehow I missed John Blanchette's column on the Gonzaga series. Forgive me.
From Pullman — Austin Joyner of Marysville-Pilchuck high school has decided to play football at Washington State, according to his Twitter account. Joyner becomes the second known member of the class of 2015 to verbally declare their intentions to play for Mike Leach and the Cougars.
Rivals.com rates Joyner as a four-star player and ranks him the 27th best running back in the class, but he will player cornerback at WSU, according to Ransford. Last year Joyner said that he would accept a football scholarship from Washington under previous coach Steve Sarkisian.
In addition to WSU, Joyner currently claims football scholarship offers from Arkansas, Colorado, Oregon State and Washington.
From Pullman — Yesterday we reported that the Washington State men's basketball team will play Gonzaga in Spokane again next season as part of a three-year contract. The news drew a wide range of reactions from people like our own Vince Grippi, to CougCenter's Jeff Nusser to Barry Bolton ($) of Cougfan. Today I caught up with Bill Moos and we chatted about the series with Gonzaga, as well as some other items.
Those notes after the jump.
A GRIP ON SPORTS
It is amazing what gets fans worked up some times. Just amazing. Read on.
From Pullman — One of the true position battles this spring has taken place at center, where Riley Sorenson and Sam Flor are seeing equal time with the first string. Our story from yesterday's practice takes a look at that particular competition and we've got a recap of the team's 10th practice. We also reported the news yesterday that Washington State will play Gonzaga in Spokane again next season.
A Washington running back has overcome three ACL tears to get back on the football field … Here is a Q&A with Utah's defensive coordinator … Jordan Adams will put off the NBA draft another year … USC could start a true freshman on the offensive line.
From Pullman — Today, much like Led Zeppelin, I was a Fool in the Rain. And boy did it ever rain. The Cougars had their most inclement practice of the spring on Thursday. Find out which of my notes survived the tempest after the jump.
From Pullman — Football practice meant that I couldn't get this blog post up until now, but earlier I tweeted the news that Washington State will play Gonzaga in Spokane for the second straight year next season as part of a three-year contract. The terms of the contract say that Gonzaga will host WSU the first year (this past season), the teams will play a “neutral site” game at Spokane Arena in the second year (next season) with a game in Pullman during the third and final year.
It's likely that the schools will split the revenue from next year's game but I haven't been able to confirm that. I should have more tomorrow.
Domantas Sabonis, the 17-year-old son of former Portland Trail Blazer center Arvydas Sabonis, has signed with Gonzaga. Article here.
It's a big get for the Zags, who bolstered their frontcourt and added a highly skilled forward to go with Przemek Karnowski, Kyle Wiltjer and Angel Nunez. As GU's release indicates, Ryan Edwards has told coaches he plans on redshirting next season.
The word that came to mind watching Sabonis on this highlight tape is smooth. He has polished moves and scores in a variety of ways. He's probably similar to Wiltjer in many ways, minus the 3-point accuracy at this point. Sabonis moves well and should only get bigger and stronger as he ages. He speaks fluent English (Spanish, too).
Numerous tweeters have asked if he'll play right away. My guess is he'll see a lot of playing time.
A GRIP ON SPORTS
It's only one game. OK, maybe it is more than that. Read on.
From Pullman — There weren't any signing day surprises for Washington State basketball fans on Wednesday, but new coach Ernie Kent still has more than a month left to fill out his four remaining roster spots. It was a somewhat slow day for WSU news but we held another live chat and put up our Five Questions blog post with defensive lineman Xavier Cooper. CougCenter has a good look at WSU scholarship situation. We're getting closer to the NFL Draft and Deone Bucannon is visiting teams.
Sports Illustrated's Zac Ellis gives his take on Cal's coaching hire … A pair of Bruins make their decision to go pro official … As did Arizona State's Jahii Carson … Washington receiver Damore'ea Stringfellow received his sentence yesterday.
Bonus Link: This story on Yasiel Puig's defection from Cuba is great.