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A Friday morning scratching post

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Always thought there was no greater distraction working at home than a young child wanting attention. But now we have a cat. A pushy, needy, demanding cat. The cat is worse. It won't stay in its crib. Read on.

Another day in the wilderness

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Growing up, catechism was a big part of everyday life at St. Rita's School. We learned lots of Bible history, from the lion's den back in the old days to the letter writing of the later years. And we learned the importance of numbers. Three, seven and 40 were pounded into our heads via the nuns' rulers artfully applied to the backside of our hands. So when I counted today's links and finished at 40, I immediately thought of the years wandering in the desert, the days fasting in the wilderness, things like that. Some lessons reinforced via physical pain are never lost. Read on.

It’s warming up - for one day at least

A GRIP ON SPORTS

As I sit down at my computer to write this post, it is 41 degrees outside. The snow is sweating like I used to do walking up those Beasley steps to my perch high above Friel Court. At least travel for the area's basketball teams won't be a problem this week. Read on.

An odd sort of morning

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Really don't know how to hook you into this morning's post. Maybe the best way is to be honest. We have a bunch of links today covering the wide breadth of the sporting world. And a lot of them have rather odd connections to local schools. Read on.

A road trip and an epiphany

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Slept in a bit today – after all, it is Sunday – after staying up late last night. Well, late for me. But despite the extra hour or so of sleep, we have a lot to cover and we want to get it up on the web before you get fixated on the NFL playoff games. Read on.

Another near-perfect Saturday

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Another beautiful Saturday is here. Aren't Saturday's always beautiful no matter what the day is like? If the week was a high school, Saturday would be the quarterback of the football team, the head cheerleader, the coolest teacher. Yep, Saturdays are great. Felt that way since I was about 5 years old. Read on.

Join our live chat

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Join us for our live chat at noon. You can submit your questions now and we'll be here at noon.

Snow … and making it rain in college sports

A GRIP ON SPORTS

It snowed quite a bit in Spokane yesterday. Enough to disrupt life in Washington's second-largest city. But the snow on the streets around the Lilac City pales in comparison to the piles on the Palouse. South of Spokane the snow came a couple days earlier, fell harder and will probably stay longer. Classes at Washington State were cancelled today but the basketball game will go on, provided the Stanford Cardinal made the trip down U.S. 195. As a veteran of that trek (I still follow the state's traffic cams religiously this time of year), I will say the trip will be slow, but can be done. So the game will go on. We have more on that today, of course, but we also have another issue to discuss, one that might raise some eyebrows, so read on.

Basketball news on a Wednesday morning

A GRIP ON SPORTS • UPDATED: 8:50 A.M.

Tuesday is the day the local college basketball coaches talk with the media, from Mark Few at Gonzaga to Ken Bone at Washington State. That results in stories from the S-R staff concerning those coaches' teams. A pretty simple cause and effect really. Read on.

It’s Tuesday with all that entails

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Really thought I would wake this morning to a covering of snow. And yet, nothing. I know 80 miles south of here, in Pullman (my home away from home the past five years), there is a covering of the white stuff (how do I know? Christian Caple passed on the news in his blog post, plus I can look at Martin Stadium on the Cougars' construction camera), but here in beautiful Spokane, nothing yet. At least where my home is located (and no, we don't have a construction camera link to pass along). Anyhow, the lack of snow sort of mirrors the lack of links to pass along today. OK, I know. That was a long way to go for a short, poor metaphor of sorts, but it was all we could cobble together today. Read on.

Sunday morning in the Northwest

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Can't say I joined what was probably most of you in your main activity yesterday. Nope, I didn't get to watch the NFL playoffs, most notably the game of the century – as of now, anyway – in San Francisco. Missed that one and the rout in the nightcap. Had other obligations. Read on.

A darn full Saturday

A GRIP ON SPORTS

It was a big day in the Northwest yesterday and the biggest aspect of it didn't hit until late afternoon. That's when news began to leak about the Mariners' trade of Michael Pineda to the New York Yankees for catcher/designated hitter Jesus Montero. There were others involved in the biggest trade of the offseason thus far, but those are the main characters in this Hot Stove play. Read on.

•••

Fight songs are not supposed to be taken literally

A GRIP ON SPORTS

I was really looking forward to watching a couple of basketball games last night, one of which was tight, the other not so much. But sandwiched in between were a very interesting few minutes down in Tucson, a few minutes that might have ramifications this weekend. Read on.

Nothing surprising today … well, yes there is

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Some days you guys surprise me. Other days you don't. Yesterday was of the latter variety – and the former as well, actually. Read on.

Change may be coming to BCS

A GRIP ON SPORTS

It was pretty obvious no one was real enamored of Alabama and Louisiana State meeting again in the BCS championship game. Heck, nearly two-thirds of the readers here would rather have watched LSU and Oklahoma State play. Well, it seems as if you are not alone. The BCS commissioners aren't all that thrilled with their system anymore either. Read on.

A championship Monday

A GRIP ON SPORTS

It's official. The voters have spoken. It's time to congratulate to winner, console the loser and unite as American sports fans, working together for the greater good of our community. Personally, I'm ticked. But, hey, isn't that the way the system works? Someone wins, someone loses and Tim Tebow captivates. Read on.

Your Sunday morning wrap-up

TALES FROM THE GRIP

It's Sunday so we slept in a bit. Heck, it was almost 7 in the morning when we dragged ourselves out of our nice warm bed. But duty called, so we slipped on our slippers and headed to the home office and our computer. And what a bounty awaited. Stories from Gonzaga's slow-starting-but-ultimately-easy win over Santa Clara. More on WSU's defeat in Colorado. The Vandals, the Eagles and the Pirates. What fun. And, lest I forget, almost 500 votes on our reader survey. Read on.

A big Saturday

BUDGET BYTES

There is no way today's honorary title is going to win – as I write this, it is in last place in your voting, with three lonely clicks – so we thought we would use it today before it is buried forever (BTW, we moved the poll up to this post; voting will end today). But it really has no correlation to the theme of today's post, which revolves around the importance of today's basketball games for area teams. Read on.

A busy Thursday night turns into a full Friday

GRIP IT AND RIP IT • UPDATED: 3:30 P.M.

In the spirit of today's honorary title – and check back a bit later today because we are going to run our first poll and it will be on the name of this feature – we're going to do a bit of ripping. And we're not talking about coupons from today's S-R. Read on.

• UPDATE: As promised, we want to know which of the many names we were offered we should call this daily feature. More than a dozen were suggested, but we had to winnow down the order some. So here you go.

Just add some dipping sauce …

VG'S SPORTS NUGGETS

It's a big day today in about 55 different ways. It all starts this morning with this post. Being it's a Thursday in basketball season, there is more to read from around the Inland Northwest than even I have time for – and I'm semi-retired. But if you want a quick overview of college and prep sports, this is the right place to be. We have links and notes from everything from Washington State basketball to prep wrestling, from the Zags to the Eagles. BTW, the headline refers to today's guest title. Read on.

Wednesday morning’s tales from the S-R

TALES FROM THE GRIP

Went through some training yesterday, attending a class on the Net tools available for us. Unlike most of our college classes, we had to attend this one. Now we know how to put up surveys, hold live chats, post video, a whole bunch of new-fangled things – none of which we will use today. Read on.

College football’s big day was big

MORNING CUP OF JOE • UPDATED: 4:30 P.M.

College football's New Year's Day – this year on Jan. 2 – was much more fun than the real New Year's Day, especially from about 2 p.m. on. The Rose Bowl and Fiesta Bowl were worth every second of the seven hours spent in front of the big screen, though it never fails to amaze me when coaches put the entire game on the foot of a kicker, especially a freshman kicker. Read on.

Summing up WSU’s week

COUGARS

It's been a long time since I've written a morning post from Spokane. But that's where we find ourselves on this nicer-than-average Sunday in early December. We only have one question for you. Is your Christmas shopping done? Read on.

WSU runs over Eastern, 75-49

COUGARS

On Wednesday, Washington State pounded a Grambling team that had seven players on the bench. On Saturday afternoon, the Cougars pounded Eastern Washington, but this time it was WSU that was short-handed. Read on.

WSU shorthanded vs. EWU

COUGARS

Trying to keep track of about three games on my computer while also attempting to get ready for a Washington State basketball game is not the easiest juggling act. But it's fun. It's a Saturday with college football and basketball going on. Pretty fun time of year. Read on.

Zags hold off EWU, 77-69

Back with my game story from Gonzaga's 77-69 victory over EWU. The Eagles hit 13 3-pointers, led by Collin Chiverton's six 3s, while GU did much of its damage at the foul line. The Bulldogs were 36 of 51 (five Eags fouled out). Robert Sacre and Marquise Carter combined to make 26 of 36 FTs.

I'll be back tomorrow with a day-after post.

EWU vs. Seattle University

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Slideshow: EWU wins 95-91 over Seattle University in Cheney Dec. 15, 2010

2010-11 college basketball preview

We gave our college basketball previews a facelift. Click below to see our special section on the men’s and women’s basketball programs at Gonzaga, Washington State, Eastern Washington and Idaho.

The Social Net

Gonzaga pounds EWU, 94-52

Back with an unedited game story from Gonzaga’s 94-52 win over EWU on Monday night.

Come back tomorrow for a day-after post.

Zags, Eags clash Monday

Back from a furlough week and I hope everyone had a great Christmas. Below is an unedited advance of Monday’s Gonzaga-EWU game, as well as some notes that didn’t make the preview.

Read on.