As we begin a week with no school in Pullman and the first Pac-10 home games of the new year, we stop a while and look around. All we see is snow. A pile here, a mountain of it there. Snowboarding is great, but driving? That's a little dicey. Anyhow, we have Washington State news and links, so read on.
• Washington State: Do the Cougars have problems? Well, they did go 0-2 on their Pac-10-opening road trip, so sure. But getting back to the form that helped them to a 10-2 nonconference record should be easier at home than on the road. Especially considering there is no school, so practice can be a little more intense and in-depth. … CougCenter has some thoughts on how the Cougars can get back on track. … The new-look WSU Football Blog has some positive vibes. … And that's it out of Pullman this morning.
• Around the Pac-10: Lots of stuff today, what with Oregon State doing a number on Arizona in Corvallis once again (and, if you are fascinated by this kind of thing, check out Jared Cunningham's dunk). The Wildcats must not like their annual trip there, as they lost 76-75 on Sunday. The 2-0 Beavers are up next for WSU on Thursday night. … Stanford struggled in the nonconference part of the season, then opens Pac-10 play by kicking the stuffing out of the Bears, 82-68, at home. Go figure. Cal had a pretty good run of close games against tough competition in the preconference part of the schedule. … Though the Ducks won't open Matthew Knight Arena for about 10 days, they went through practice there yesterday. … Percy Allen posts his power rankings for the week. … Now over to football. … When it comes to football spending, WSU ranks last in the Pac-12. Of course, when it comes to overall athletic spending, WSU ranks last. … Oregon, which spends a little more than Washington State on its football team, arrived in Arizona yesterday for its national title game with Auburn. The Ducks were businesslike and ready to go. The one thing no is talking about is how Oregon went through a circus like that last year at the Rose Bowl while the Tigers are getting hit with all the junk for the first time in a while. … Stanford finishes its football season tonight against Virginia Tech in the Orange Bowl. Will it be the finish of the Jim Harbaugh era at Stanford as well? How about Andrew Luck?
• That's what we have for today. We're headed down to Pullman – it sure was nice to have some holiday time with the family in Spokane – for basketball and will have a feature this week in preparation for the Pac-10 home opener Thursday. Until later …