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Live chat today, plus a tough week for WSU


FROM PULLMAN — The past few days have been trying times for Washington State fans in a couple of different ways. The football team will try to turn that around this weekend against Oregon, but more bad news trickled in elsewhere yesterday. Read on.

Spitz absent again from WSU practice


FROM PULLMAN — Washington State began its preparation for Oregon earlier this afternoon, going through a two-hour session of scout work and special teams drills. They did all of it without an offensive lineman who had returned to the team only two days prior. Read on.

Mike Leach on Pac-12 coaches call


FROM PULLMAN — Mike Leach made his weekly appearance on the Pac-12 coaches call this morning, and we have a recap of it below.

News of the routine, and unexpected


FROM PULLMAN — Mondays are usually busy during football season, with press conferences to attend, questions to ask and stories to write. But some breaking news yesterday made things even more interestind. Read on.

Mondays with Mike Leach, part 2


FROM PULLMAN — Here's the rest of Mike Leach's press conference, with player videos, as well.

Mondays with Mike Leach, part 1


FROM PULLMAN — Mike Leach met with reporters for about 20 minutes today, covering topics ranging from the Colorado game to Oregon to Matthew McConaughey. Read on for a transcript of the first half of his press conference.

WSU depth chart, week 5


FROM PULLMAN — As usual, there are a few changes to Washington State's depth chart.

Most notable might be the movement of Gabe Marks from outside receiver to inside receiver. He's now listed as the starter at the “Y” receiver spot that was previously occupied by Andrei Lintz and then Brett Bartolone.

Bartolone is now listed as the starter at the “H” inside spot ahead of Bobby Ratliff.

Coach Mike Leach said he's simply trying to get WSU's four best receivers on the field.

Marks is a really smart guy, one of the smartest receivers we have,” Leach said. “I mean, he's just an intelligent guy. Like, certainly not all of you, but he could beat some of you in Trivial Pursuit. And then the other thing, just a real sense of how to play receiver and how to setup routes and set things up. And how his role related to others. So I don't like making the transition, because I don't like the transition part. But I do think he's the most adaptable. And he's pretty fast. He's one of our fastest guys.”

Also of note: Teondray Caldwell is now listed as the starting running back, and Jeff Tuel and Connor Halliday are still listed with an “or.” But Leach said Halliday will probably start this week and will take first-team reps in practice.

Depth chart after the jump.

A new week starts with links


FROM PULLMAN — Saturday wasn't fun for Washington State. But the Cougars can't dwell on it. Not with preparation for No. 2 Oregon already in the works. Read on for links to get the week started.

Spitz returns, Halliday “probably” will start again


FROM PULLMAN — Washington State held its usual short Sunday night practice, but that didn't mean there wasn't news. Read on.

A rough morning after


FROM PULLMAN — Not sure how much is left to say about Washington State's 35-34 loss to Colorado yesterday, but we'll go ahead and summarize that — and the rest of yesterday's Pac-12 action — in our morning post. Read on.

Tale of the tape: Colorado 35, WSU 34


FROM PULLMAN — As usual, we take a capsulated look at Washington State's performance, this time of a 35-34 loss to Colorado at Martin Stadium. Read on.

An impassioned Mike Leach assesses a tough loss


FROM PULLMAN — Mike Leach was as passionate as he's been at any point in his WSU tenure on Saturday. Here's a full transcript of his postgame press conference.

Pac-12 power rankings, week 4

Better late than never …

1. Oregon (3-0, 0-0 Pac-12; last week: 2) — Ducks can further assert their dominance if they beat Arizona big today.

2. Stanford (3-0, 1-0 Pac-12; last week: 3) — After an iffy win in week one, Cardinal look like a potential conference title contender.

3. UCLA (3-0, 0-0 Pac-12; last week: 4) — Tough test against game Oregon State team this week.

4. Arizona (3-0, 0-0 Pac-12; last week: 5) — Will Rich Rodriguez's offense operate as smoothly against Pac-12 teams?

5. Southern California (2-1, 0-1 Pac-12; last week: 1) — Trojans may have lost shot at national title already. Might have to fight UCLA for Pac-12 South title.

6. Oregon State (1-0, 0-0 Pac-12; last week: 6) — Beavers would be best team in the country if they got to take a few more weeks off.

7. Utah (2-1, 0-0 Pac-12; last week: 8) — Solid win over BYU alleviated some concerns over losing Jordan Wynn.

8. California (1-2, 0-0 Pac-12; last week: 9) — Bears move up a spot despite losing at Ohio State. It was their most promising performance of the season.

9. Arizona State (2-1, 0-0 Pac-12; last week: 8) — Maybe Todd Graham's offense isn't bulletproof, after all.

10. Washington (2-1, 0-0 Pac-12; last week: 10) — Not sure how many bye weeks it would take for Huskies to have a shot against Stanford.

11. Washington State (2-1, 0-0 Pac-12; last week: 11) — Might not feel like it, but Cougars are about to match last season's 3-1 start.

12. Colorado (0-3, 0-0 Pac-12; last week: 12) — The Buffaloes are really bad.

Live chat, and another game day on the Palouse


FROM PULLMAN — If the haze doesn't get any worse, there will definitely be a football game played in Pullman today. OK, so there's probably going to be one played no matter what. But it might not be too pleasant for the spectators. Read on for links and ponderings.

Friday before game day for WSU


FROM PULLMAN — It's walk-through day for Washington State, which means we're busy writing our advance material for tomorrow's game. But not before linking to everything you need to read from the day before, as usual. Read on.

Halliday the man during light Thursday practice


FROM PULLMAN — It was a standard Thursday for Washington State, with the Cougars covering some special teams work, finishing up their scout work for the week, then watching the scout-team players put on pads and scrimmage for a little while to wrap things up. We have notes. Read on.

Gauta, picks and links


FROM PULLMAN — From a story on a WSU nose tackle to our weekly Pac-12 picks, there's plenty of Cougar-related news to read about this morning. Read.

Halliday still taking most reps


FROM PULLMAN — If we had to guess who Washington State's starting quarterback will be on Saturday, we'd feel at least semi-comfortable saying …

Pac-12 Debates Injury Reports

Years from now, perhaps Arizona coach Rich Rodriguez will be lauded as an innovator. As calls for an NFL-style standardized injury report in the Pac-12 become louder and more persistent, Rodriguez doesn’t seem to care much. Partially, he said, because he doesn’t really care about opponent injuries in the first place. Also: Arizona already releases an NFL-style injury report each week that lists injured players as probable, questionable, doubtful or out. “We kind of started doing that a few years ago when we were at Michigan,” Rodriguez said on Tuesday’s Pac-12 coaches call. “It just made it a lot easier. We didn’t have to have questions all week about it, so we kind of adopted that policy.” Some Pac-12 coaches aren’t quite as forthcoming with such information/Christian Caple, SR. More here. (AP file photo of WSU coach Mike Leach)

Question: Should Pac-12 coaches, like WSU's Mike Leach, be required status of injured players each week?

Live chat on deck this afternoon


FROM PULLMAN — It's another Wednesday at Sportslink, which means a live chat later this afternoon at 1 p.m., and another Washington State football practice tonight. We have some reading material for you. Read on.

WSU practice: Morris says Ratliff must step up


FROM PULLMAN — One quarterback took most of the reps during Washington State's practice today. But he didn't take all of them. We have that, plus a conversation with inside receivers coach Eric Morris, after the jump. Read onward.

Mike Leach on Pac-12 coaches call


FROM PULLMAN — Mike Leach answered questions on the Pac-12 coaches call today. He had some interesting things to say, as usual. Read on.

A busy Tuesday starts with links


FROM PULLMAN — With a Pac-12 coaches conference call in the morning and Washington State practicing in the afternoon, it's another busy Tuesday. But that doesn't mean you don't have time for our morning spin around the Pac-12. Read on.

Mondays with Mike Leach


FROM PULLMAN — Mike Leach spoke with reporters for about 17 minutes today on a wide range of subjects, including his thoughts on a potential Pac-12-mandated injury report, and his favorite pirates. You'll have to look elsewhere for the pirate stuff, but we have the rest of Leach's media session below.

Another Monday and more links


FROM PULLMAN — Have a case of the Mondays? Of course you don't, because I reckon you'd get your rear kicked saying something like that. Yeah, that's an Office Space reference. And these are links. Read on.

After day off, Cougars get back to routine


FROM PULLMAN — With last week being a day short and this week being a day long, Washington State took Saturday off and returned to the practice field for its usual Sunday night practice session. We have some notes, so read on.

Reviewing a high-scoring Saturday


FROM PULLMAN — Keeping with the weekend's Las Vegas theme, we'll call Saturday a good time to have bet the “over.” There were high, lopsided scores all over the place, including the game featuring Washington State's next opponent. Read on.

Links from a WSU win


FROM LAS VEGAS — We're flying back to Spokane shortly after this post goes live, so this is going to be brief because it's late and we're tired. But here are your morning-after links following WSU's 35-27 win over UNLV.