A GRIP ON SPORTS
Want to talk football? It's possible right now because the NFL schedule is in full swing and college football is coming down to the wire. Want to talk basketball? Why not, college basketball is ramping up and the NBA has been going for a while. It's overlap season, that exciting time of the year when all matter of sports fight for your attention with ads for Black Friday sales and snow tires. Read on.
Today we have a feature story on Luke Falk and his winding path to becoming Washington State's starting quarterback.
We supplement that story with a sidebar about Falk's sisters, a pair of country music singers living in Nashville.
There are more WSU and Pac-12 links after the jump.
Keith Harrington starred on Thursday Night Football again. That's not unusual. But he did it in an unusual setting today.
Because of a suggestion to coach Mike Leach made by injured quarterback Connor Halliday during a recent phone call, the Cougars have practiced indoors all week to prepare for the unseasonably warm temperature they'll play in this weekend.
We've got a report from WSU's weekly underclassmen scrimmage after the jump.
Read the transcript from this chat in the extended post.
Not sure there's much to add after Gonzaga's 94-42 beatdown of Saint Joseph's last night, but we'll give it a shot.
More in my day-after post below.
A GRIP ON SPORTS
From here to there and back again. Sounds like a '60s/'70s music anthology featuring Led Zeppelin or someone. But no, that's not it. It just describes where we are headed today. Read on.
You might remember a freshman during Paul Wulff's final season as Washington State football coach named Jordan Simone.
Or you might not. Simone only really played on special teams and didn't have a scholarship. Well, he's got one now at Arizona State and has emerged as one of the Pac-12's leading tackler just a couple years after deciding to quit football. Our story in today's paper looks at his path back to the gridiron.
More links are after the jump.
Saw some things Wednesday night that I haven't seen before at the McCarthey Athletic Center, or any arena, for that matter.
Score with 8:35 left in the first half: GU 29, Saint Joseph's 5. Score at halftime: GU 48, Saint Joseph's 10. Score early in the second half: GU 60, Saint Joseph's 11.
Gonzaga put on a show during its 94-42 victory over the Hawks. My unedited game story is below. Here are some great game pictures from Jesse Tinsley.
I'll have a day-after post up in the morning.
S-R photojournalist Jesse Tinsley covered GU's home game against Saint Joseph. Check out this big picture gallery of game photos.
Conflicting duties mean we won't be able to bring you a practice report tonight. The Cougars practiced for about two hours in their indoor practice bubble, as they have all week, to prepare for Saturday's game at Arizona State.
A GRIP ON SPORTS
What time is the right time to start a college football game? Is it 11 in the morning? Or 1:30 in the afternoon? How about 7:30 at night? Read on.
The WSU women's basketball team is receiving votes in the AP poll after blowouts of No. 22 Dayton and Idaho State.
Win tonight against No. 16 Nebraska and the Cougars will surely be ranked themselves. The game tips off at 8 p.m. in Beasley Coliseum. Here is the school's release.
More links are after the jump.
One of Spokane’s first high school athletes to gain national prominence was Ray Flaherty. A multi-sport star at Gonzaga High, he was a member of the school’s first football teams. Briefly, one of his teammates there was a young man by the name of Bing Crosby, who soon dropped football to pursue other interests.
Ray went on to star at Gonzaga University and then played in the National Football League from 1927 through 1935, except for 1930 when he took a year off to coach his alma mater.
In 1936 he became the head coach of the Boston Redskins, who moved to Washington the next season. In seven seasons under his leadership, the Redskins won four division titles and two NFL championships. In 1937, he was credited with inventing the screen pass. His NFL coaching record was 87-37-5.
After service in the Navy during World War II, Ray returned to football, coaching the New York Yankees of the new All-American Football Conference to two division titles. He finished his coaching career at the helm of the Chicago Hornets of the AAFC in 1949. He then returned to the Northwest, making his home in Coeur d’ Alene. He passed away in 1994. Ray was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1976.
One of the more famous anecdotes of his playing days was in the 1934 NFL championship game between his New York Giants and the undefeated Chicago Bears, coached by George Halas. It was played on New York’s Polo Field and on game day the field was an ice rink. Both teams struggled to keep their feet.
Ray remembered a similar situation from his college days when Gonzaga played Montana, and suggested the Giants change their footwear to sneakers. None were available at the start of the game, but by the beginning of the second half the equipment manager had found some at nearby Manhattan College. The Giants, down 13-3 to start the 4th quarter, used their newly found traction to score 27 unanswered points, upsetting the Bears 30-13 and making Ray the unofficial MVP of the game for his timely tip.
Washington State took to its indoor practice bubble, a clime much closer to what it will see this weekend in sunny Tempe.
We reporters are allowed to watch the first 15 minutes or so of practice (we typically stay a little longer) but the practice bubble is rather opaque so we didn't see as much as usual after that. What we did see I've summarized after the jump.
S-R photojournalist Jesse Tinsley covered the GU women vs. Idaho State. Check out this big picture gallery of game photos.
Washington State's game notes for this weekend's game at Arizona State were released today, along with an updated depth chart. It looks like Pat Porter will start at field cornerback and Charleston White will slide over to the boundary cornerback spot in place of Daquawn Brown, who must sit out the first half after being ejected from the Oregon State game with a targeting penalty. Marcus Mason is listed as the backup running back, probably indicating that Gerard Wicks is still sick and whatever injury Theron West suffered early in the OSU game is still bothering him.
Tyler Baker is listed as the starter over River Cracraft and Mike Leach indicated yesterday that the two will split time. Cole Madison is listed as the starter at right tackle, but I wouldn't be surprised to see Jacob Seydel start there this week, either.
The game notes and depth chart (page 11) are after the jump.
When the clock ticked to under a minute remaining in the game, Idaho point guards Mike Scott and Perrion Callandret each buried 3-point shots to propel the Vandals to a Monday night 82-77 win over the visiting South Dakota State Jackrabbits.
Callandret's 3-point make was the bigger shot. Idaho trailed 75-74 with 56 seconds remaining when the sophomore from Bothell, Wash. let the shot fly. Scott's came with 10 seconds remaining at the shot clock buzzer, essentially clinching Idaho's victory.
I touch on the play in my game story from last night.
Idaho improved to 2-0 on the season. The Vandals defeated NAIA opponent Eastern Oregon in the season opener.
Callandret, Scott and Idaho coach Don Verlin touched on the topic of confidence, something Callandret sorely lacked in his freshman campaign last season.
Read what they had to say after the jump.
DVR’d Gonzaga-SMU and by the time the preceding game concluded and the cameras came on inside the MAC there was just 6:50 remaining in the first half. (I gather from my twitter timeline that GU nation wasn't pleased with this development.) Anyway, the Zags already led by 10 and the tone for the evening had been set in Gonzaga's 72-56 win.
A GRIP ON SPORTS
It's not easy putting a team together from what basically is scratch. Taking less than a handful of returning players and using them as the base, mixing in new faces in the starting lineup and off the bench. It's not the usual recipe for success. But Mark Few and the Zags seem to be cooking already. Read on.