FROM PULLMAN — As temperatures hovered in the 90s — prompting the question: can a temperature really hover? — the Cougars practiced for about an hour and a half before moving over to Martin Stadium for some special teams drills and a brief, sort-of-scrimmage. Details after the jump.
We'll start with some personnel notes … It appears offensive lineman Chas Sampson has been moved to the defensive line, as he wore a white No. 74 jersey today and worked out with that group. Sampson hasn't been seeing much time with either offensive line unit this camp, so it's not much of a surprise. … Players who appeared limited included: WR Kristoff Williams, DB Daniel Simmons, DB Konner Kafentzis, LB Corey Laufasa, OL Niu Sale, DL Austin Brown, DL Destiny Vaeao and DL Adam Coerper, who was put through an extensive workout in the sand pit before doing some work on the Martin Stadium stairs. … Once the team headed to Martin, they worked on some field-goal and punt coverage drills. It did not go particularly well, as several breakdowns led to a handful of verbal reminders that poor effort on special teams will result in changes in the lineup elsewhere, that if you don't bust your tail on special teams, you might not play offense or defense, either. … There was one highlight: freshman DT Robert Barber blew a hole in the offensive line on a field-goal attempt, allowing CB Brandon Golden to get a hand on the ball and block the kick. Hooting and hollering commenced. … LB Justin Sagote saw plenty of action with the starting defensive unit, taking over for Chester Su'a at the WILL LB spot. Linebackers coach Jeff Choate said afterward that he wanted to send a message to Su'a that the kind of effort required to play linebacker is the kind of effort being shown by Sagote every day. We'll have more about that in tomorrow's newspaper. … The starting offensive line featured John Fullington, Matt Goetz, Elliott Bosch, Jake Rodgers and Dan Spitz, with Wade Jacobson working in at left guard and Taylor Meighen working in at center. Jacobson can't be in full pads until tomorrow. … Ioane Gauta continues to see time with the No. 2 defense, playing between Steven Hoffart and Lenard Williams on the defensive line. … Corners and safeties continued to rotate pretty frequently, with Tracy Clark taking the bulk of the reps in place of Simmons with the starting unit. … Jeff Tuel completed a few passes, including a strike down the middle to a leaping Gabe Marks that allowed the offense to score on the next play thanks to a short touchdown run by Leon Brooks. But the defense seemed to have tighter coverage — especially on the outside — than it had at any point this camp. … The highlight of the day came late in the scrimmage, when Theron West fumbled the ball as he attempted to leap across the goal line. Xavier Cooper recovered the fumble, and as Choate sprinted onto the field to indicate that the defense had recovered the ball, Cooper booted it about 30 yards down field in celebration. It was a pretty impressive kick for a defensive lineman. … If you watch the video of Mike Leach above, you'll hear an interesting comment about NCAA practice rules. Leach thinks that, like college basketball teams, football teams should be able to have mixedpractices or scrimmages against other schools. It's an interesting thought.
All for now.