From Pullman — The Cougars are gearing up for a critical Pac-12 matchup against Utah. Our 2-Minute Drill covers four things the Cougars will need to accomplish to be successful.
The unedited version is after the jump.
1. Protect Connor Halliday. Utah comes to Pullman leading the nation with 36 sacks on the season. While the offensive line played one of its better games last week against Arizona, Halliday was still sacked four times. The Cougars must block even better this week, or Washington State will have a hard time scoring points with Halliday lying on the turf.
2. Trust the running game. WSU rushed for over 100-yards against the Wildcats and should try to do so again on Saturday against the Utes. While the Cougars won’t run the ball often, if they can continue picking up five or more yards per rush it will keep Utah’s defensive line honest, preventing them from teeing off on Halliday.
3. Pick off a pass or two. Unfortunately, Utah quarterback Travis Wilson’s career may be over due to a pre-existing condition in his head. With inexperienced backup Adam Schulz taking over the reigns of the Utes’ offense, the Cougars have a chance to force the former walk-on into some rookie mistakes.
4. Play loose. There’s no other way to spin it, this is a huge game for the Cougars. It’s the seniors’ final game in Martin Stadium, bowl eligibility is on the line and WSU is favored. The team needs to not worry about any of that and avoid any distractions that could cause tentative play.