Washington State gets back to work today after their first day off of the fall. The Cougars will go through another two-a-day, with practice starting at 8:30 this morning. The second will be at 3:30 this afternoon. Before they get underway, we have some news for you, so read on.
• Washington State: Nothing out there related to football, but the Cougars did announce the long-awaited signing of baseball coach Donnie Marbut to a contract extension. The rollover contract means Marbut and WSU both have some security. … In one piece of baseball news, we’ve learned pitcher Rusty Shellhorn, a junior from Spokane’s Central Valley High, had decided to transfer to Texas Tech. … Other than that, the news from Pullman is pretty thin. We do have this piece on Oklahoma State running back Kendall Hunter, the Cowboys’ playmaker who is coming back from last year’s injuries.
• Around the Pac-10: The Times’ Bud Withers continues his annual spin around the conference with this preview of Arizona State. … San Jose’s Jon Wilner examines some of the season’s more interesting possibilities. … The Mackey nominations came out – for best tight end – and the Pac-10 players on the list are an interesting bunch. … Washington: The loss of freshman running back Deontae Cooper hurts the Huskies, but not as much as it could have. … Kickoff coverage is a crucial aspect of the game that’s often overlooked. … Highly touted recruit Austin Seferian-Jenkins picks Washington. … Oregon State: The Beavers’ freshman quarterback isn’t struggling with the offense. … We did a story recently on two-a-days. Here’s another one from the Oregonian’s Paul Buker. … Oregon: New athletic director Rob Mullens introduces himself. … The Ducks have another promising running back. … Cal: Sometimes your last name determines a lot about your future. … Stanford: The Cardinal depth chart is already pretty well fixed. … USC: Small in stature, Nickell Robey is coming up big for the Trojans. … UCLA: The Bruins picked up another quarterback late in the recruiting season. He’s making an impression. … Arizona State: Notes from Monday’s practice. No, there is no quarterback decision yet. … Arizona: Just tell him. Wherever the Wildcats need A.J. Simmons, he’ll play.
• That’s all the news and links for this morning. But we do have a personal note we want to share. Long-time readers of this blog know one of the great perks of the job is my thrice-annual trips to Los Angeles and the ensuing visits with my 85-year-old dad. It’s been a godsend the past few years. Well, this week I’m making one last visit-my-dad trip to LA, this one unplanned. As you might know, he suffered a major stroke while I was visiting during the USC/UCLA basketball weekend last winter and has never really bounced back. And now, it’s time say goodbye. Due to that, our contributions to this blog will disappear until at least Friday. We know you will understand. So, until Friday then …