FROM PULLMAN — As mentioned this morning, Vince is handling basketball duties for us this evening. But we'll be here for the first half or so, and have some pregame thoughts to get you going. Read on.
Brock Motum was asked yesterday whether he still gets nervous for season openers. He said that's what the exhibition game is for, and since WSU already has that out of the way — an uncomfortably close 62-50 win over Saint Martin's on Tuesday — that it shouldn't be much of an issue. He's probably right when it comes to the upperclassmen. But Tuesday's crowd — announced in the 1,600 range — doesn't really compare to what's expected today. It's Dads' Weekend, which should provide a nice attendance surplus, as well as the fact that there's a football game tonight. Pretty sparse crowd at the moment, but we're still early. … It occurred to me that unlike last season, my tweets won't be the lone source of information for many of these games. The Pac-12 Network is carrying today's game (unless you have DirecTV), and you'll be able to watch every WSU game this season except for Pepperdine on Nov. 16. Rich Burk and Lenny Wilkens have the call on the TV side, with Bud Nameck giving the radio call. … Watch today for how well the Cougars defend the perimeter. Mike Ladd pointed out Tuesday that was one of WSU's shortcomings against Saint Martin's, and the Saints made them pay for it early. That's part of the reason SMU stuck around for so long. I'm curious to see who the Cougars task with defending Collin Chiverton, a 6-foot-6 forward with springs. … EWU is a young team without much experience, but the Eagles do have some size with which to combat Brock Motum. This could be an interesting test in that regard. Motum is going to see double-teams all season. If that's the tactic EWU employs, can the Cougars find ways to make them pay? WSU didn't shoot the ball very well from 3-point range in its exhibition game, though coach Ken Bone said yesterday he was pleased with the looks the Cougars had, and he's confident they'll make them in the future. It's probably not essential they make a ton today, so long as they find a way to get Motum going (and clean up on the glass, something they didn't do against a considerably less athletic Saint Martin's team).
You can follow us on Twitter for updates from the first half. Vince will be here the whole time, so follow him, too (@vinceg55).