November 23, 1997

Season In Review

 

Pullman - 26,000

Game 1 - Aug. 30

WSU 37, UCLA 34

Ryan Leaf threw for a career-high 381 yards and three TDs and the Cougar defense made a goal-line stand late in the game to win before a national ABC-TV audience. WSU fell behind 14-3 before scoring 27 straight points in the second quarter.

Los Angeles - 51,655

Game 2 - Sept. 13

WSU 28, USC 21

As the Cougars rallied from behind, Kevin McKenzie caught two passes for 80 yards and scored with less than 6 minutes remaining. Leaf threw for 355 yards and three TDs as WSU defeated both UCLA and USC in the same season for the first time in school history.

Champaign, Ill. - 47,131

Game 3 - Sept. 20

WSU 35, Illinois 22

The Cougars, ranked 19th, overcame a slow start, scrambling for 21 fourth-quarter points to overtake the Fighting Illini. Leaf and McKenzie hooked up for an 80-yard TD on WSU’s first play of the day, but the Cougars had to rally from a 14-7 third-quarter deficit.

Pullman - 34,131

Game 4 - Sept. 27

WSU 58, Boise State 0

The Cougar defense held the Broncos to only seven first downs. Leaf passed for 289 yards and three TDs, and Michael Black rushed for 141 yards and a score as 14th-ranked WSU blew out the visiting Big West representative Broncos.

Eugene, Ore. - 43,516

Game 5 - Oct. 4

WSU 24, Oregon 13

Patience and persistence helped the Cougars outlast Oregon at Autzen Stadium. WSU scratched out only 30 yards of offense in the first quarter but chipped away at the Ducks. Black rushed for 124 yards and one TD while Leaf threw for 226 yards and a score.

Pullman - 35,759

Game 6 - Oct. 18

WSU 63, California 37

The Cougars scored their most points ever against a Pac-10 opponent, racking up eight unanswered touchdowns after the Golden Bears went up 6-0 early in the game. Leaf threw for 332 yards and five TDs while Black ran for 86 yards and three TDs on only nine carries.

Pullman - 31,137

Game 7 - Oct. 25

WSU 35, Arizona 34, OT

The Cougar defense stopped Arizona’s two-point conversion try to seal the victory for 10th-ranked WSU. Leaf passed for a career-high 384 yards to bring the Cougars back from a 21-14 deficit, then scored on a 1-yard plunge in overtime.

Tempe, Ariz. - 73,644

Game 8 - Nov. 1

Arizona State 44, WSU 31

The Cougars took it on the chin for the first time this season as a sellout crowd watched the Sun Devils survive a furious second-half comeback try. WSU took a 25-24 lead with 13:18 to go, but ASU turned two late Leaf fumbles into TDs.

Pullman - 32,345

Game 9 - Nov. 8

WSU 77, SW Louisiana 7

Ten different Cougs scored TDs as No. 15 WSU enjoyed its biggest margin of victory since 1907. Leaf threw for 305 yards, four scores and ran for another - and sat out the second half. WSU’s defense allowed only 152 yards on 60 plays.

Pullman - 40,306

Game 10 - Nov. 15

WSU 38, Stanford 28

Before a record crowd at Martin Stadium, the Cougars trailed in the second and fourth quarters before finally putting away the Cardinal. Black rambled for 173 yards and a touchdown and Leaf threw for two TDs and ran for another.

Seattle - 74,268

Game 11 - Nov. 22

WSU 41, Washington 35

The 11th-ranked Cougars earned their first Rose Bowl berth in 67 years by throttling Washington at Husky Stadium. WSU picked off UW quarterback Brock Huard five times while Leaf threw for 358 yards and two TDs, both to Chris Jackson, who had eight catches for 185 yards.

, DataTimes


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