COUGARS • UPDATED: 1 P.M.
When I awoke this morning and looked out the window I thought I was still in Pullman. There was quite a bit of ice on the car, something I wasn't expecting in Bellevue. Talk about feeling at home. Read on.
• Washington State: The Cougars should feel at home inside KeyArena tonight when they host Pepperdine. This is a perfect matchup for the final game before conference, a team that is competitive – but still a 13-point underdog – at a venue that should be hopping. We have an advance in today's S-R as does Bud Withers of the Seattle Times and freelancer Howie Stalwick in the News Tribune. If you are coming to tonight's game, WSU and Pepperdine alumni will be collecting Toys for Tots donations as you enter. ... There is some football news, with new WSU coach Mike Leach reeling in three recruiting commitments, one each from Florida, Texas and California. There have been a handful of players who were committed to WSU change their minds as well. ... We also covered the details from the agreement he signed with WSU, the forerunner to his contract. We had a link in yesterday's post to the letter. ... There is some movement in Texas concerning Leach's legal battle over his dismissal.
• UPDATE: This would have been up a bit sooner but I was doing some Christmas shopping. Anyhow, WSU has a bit more money to spend on the football stadium after getting this $3 million gift. How about a little something for the retiring Cougar beat writer, huh?
• Around the Pac-12: There is another Pac-12 team in action today in Seattle, with Washington hosting Cal State Northridge, hoping the return of big man Aziz N'Diaye will help the defense. ... There were a couple conference games last night, headlined by Arizona State blowing a second-half lead and losing at home to Fresno State, 68-65. ... Also, Oregon State will take a 10-2 record into conference play after defeating winless Chicago State, 92-66, in the Windy City. ... And Oregon barely got past Prairie View A&M at home, 74-66. ... USC will host Kansas tonight, hoping to give the conference a rare win over a ranked team this season. ... Arizona State's football team will try to send coach Dennis Erickson out with a win tonight against Boise State in Las Vegas. ... Oregon State is still dealing with the sorrow of Fred Thompson's death. ... Utah loses offensive coordinator Norm Chow after just one year. ... Oregon will give its football players time off until after Christmas. ... Jim Mora says he'll change the UCLA practice of skipping a practice. ... Big day for USC. Matt Barkley is going to announce his NFL decision. Safety T.J. McDonald said yesterday he's coming back.
• That's it for this morning. We'll be back before tonight's game with some thoughts. Until then ...