Tuel to start, other WSU notes

COUGARS

FROM PULLMAN — Most probably assumed this would be the case, but it appears Washington State will start Jeff Tuel at quarterback again this week. That's what coach Mike Leach said after Tuesday's practice. He also said other things. Read on.


For a story we're working on this week, I asked Leach about how he handles players leaving who don't do anything wrong — guys who work hard, go to class and get along with the coaches, but simply aren't going to have a place on the team because their skills aren't where they should be. To that, Leach said: "I think there’s some of that. I think there’s always some of that. Part of it  is, a guy like that, he wants an opportunity to play. If he’s really a football player and really loves the game, he wants an opportunity to play, to go out and play. And that’s the thing – you’ve got just kind of a narrow window and you want to take advantage of that opportunity and get out on the field. There’s times people just transfer." … Isiah Myers is no longer limited at all, and was a regular part of the receiver rotation during drills, scout and team session. It looks as if this might be the week he gets back on the field, though Wednesday and Thursday will tell more. … Tuel and Connor Halliday both took some snaps, though Tuel took more and Leach said he expects him to start on Saturday. … There was a game of tug-of-war between some offensive and defensive players after practice. It was very, very cold. … This was one of WSU's more vocal, jovial practices of the season. Leach noticed: "I do think we’ve got a bunch of guys starting to get it here. We had a real enthusiastic day today. Chemistry’s a lot of any team sport and our chemistry’s as good now as it’s been since I’ve been here."

… Outside linebackers coach Paul Volero spoke with reporters after practice. He was asked about the locker-room scene at Utah, the one Elliott Bosch addressed on Monday.

Here's how Volero saw it: "The scene was simple, really. We’re down a lot of points and there’s not a lot of emotion in that locker room. Up front, on the O and the D-line we just weren’t competing. Just tried to inspire the guys. We rounded them up, looked in each others’ eyes and got each other fired up. Basically that’s it."

He added: "You’ve got to have emotion in this game. it’s a brutal game. You’ve got to have emotion and you’ve got to have fun. And you’ve got to reach in places (to find emotion to play) — you don’t walk down the street bangin’ people. Football’s a violent game. I’m proud of those kids because they’ve really battled their ass off."

Christian Caple can be reached at christianc@spokesman.com. Twitter: @ChristianCaple

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