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Fleet Dominic Davis says he’ll go to WSU

Update: Greg Biggins of Scout.com has more from Davis.

Today wasn't Washington State's turn to speak to the print writers at Pac-12 media day but still a bit of WSU news came out. Dominic Davis, a speedy athlete from California's Bishop Alemany high school, told Scout's Barry Bolton that he will sign with the Cougars over scholarship offers from schools like UCLA, USC and Washington.

The 5-10, 175 pound Davis plays running back in high school but could make the switch to receiver at WSU much like former running backs Rickey Galvin and Calvin Green.

As always, there are the caveats that Davis' announcement isn't binding and according to Scout.com's Greg Biggin's the kid still hasn't visited the school. Still, it looks like another piece has been added to what at present looks like a very good recruiting class.

Here is his Scout.com recruiting profile.

Kameron Powell to join four-star teammate at WSU

 Braulio Perez of Scout.com reported on Twitter that four-star safety Kameron Powell out of Upland High School in Upland, California has committed to playing football at Washington State. Powell's high school teammate, quarterback Tyler Hilinski, also says he will spend his college days in Pullman.

Recruiting websites think highly of Powell. Scout.com rates him a four-star prospect and the 25th best safety prospect in his class. While Rivals.com only gives Powell three stars, it considers the him the 22nd best player at his position. According to Powell schools such as Colorado, Oregon State and Washington also offered scholarships to the 5-foot-11, 192 pound safety.

He adds to what is already shaping up to be the school's best class in some time. Both Scout and Rivals rate three of the four players who have publicly joined WSU's 2015 class as four-star players. No player signed by WSU in 2014 was ranked four-stars or above by the websites and Gabe Marks and Tyler Bruggman are the only four-star prospects to have signed with WSU in the Mike Leach coaching era. 

Friday lunchtime Pac-12 links

Not very much WSU news or really any college football and basketball news since the Pac-12 schools wrapped up their spring practices but we've cobbled together a few links. In yesterday's paper we had a story on the Cougars' offseason plans and on the blog we took a look at three things we learned from spring. Bud Withers has a story on the end of spring as well. SportsOnEarth's Michael Weinreb had a nice profile of Mike Leach. Here is a scouting report of former WSU safety Deone Bucannon, who hopes to be selected early in next week's NFL Draft.

In other Pac-12 news … Washington has a slick new basketball court … Cal has parted ways with a basketball signee … Lots of wrap-ups and the like over on the Pac-12 Blog … Will UCLA's backfield hold up this season without more help from the linebackers?

Wednesday morning Pac-12 links

From Pullman — Well, the 2013-14 Washington State football season is in the books. Or maybe we've just finished the first chapter of the 2014-15 one. The “chicken or the egg” of college football.

The Cougars had practice No. 15 yesterday, kicking off the offseason. Here is our practice report and our story on Graham Harrell, the newest member of the coaching staff. We've also got a baseball notebook.

A look at some Oregon State salaries … Which Pac-12 players might go in the NFL Draft's first round … Former Cal quarterback Zach Kline won't be heading to Oregon State after all … Next year the Pac-12 Networks show The Drive will feature UCLA.

Ernie Kent lands another commitment

We're about to start the spring game here in Spokane but I wanted to pass along the news that Ernie Kent appears to have secured another recruit for the men's basketball team. Jackie Davis has passed on scholarship offers from Tulsa and Penn State according to Josh  Gershon of Scout.com.

ESPN rates Davis the No. 92 point guard in the class of 2014 and a two-star player. A scouting report on the ESPN site says that:

Davis is physical point guard with a Chauncey Billups type of frame. Due to his strength and solid handle, he can carry defenders on his hip and make plays with his head up. He is best in the open court where he separate from pressure…

 

Aaron Cheatum makes it official

From Pullman — After verbally declaring his intentions to sign with Washington State earlier this week, Aaron Cheatum made it official today, sending in his National Letter of Intent and becoming new coach Ernie Kent's first recruit at WSU. The 6-foot-7, 240 pound forward hails from Moreno, Calif. via East Los Angeles Community College where he was named the South Coast Conference Player of the Year after leading his team to a 20-9 record while averaging 15.2 points and 8.2 rebounds per game.

“We are very fortunate to get Aaron so late in the year,” Kent said in a press release. “Aaron is a very good basketball player with an excellent skill set and will fit into how we want to play and our system very well. He has the ability to not only shoot the 3, but also post up and score inside. We are getting not only a very versatile basketball player in Aaron, but also an excellent young man.”

 

Curtis Allen to remain at WSU

From Pullman — The third and final member of men's basketball coach Ernie Kent's staff is a familiar face. Curtis Allen came to WSU as an assistant under former coach Ken Bone and will remain in the same capacity under Kent. Allen was named the team's interim coach by athletic director Bill Moos during the coaching search and has been on the road with Kent recruiting for the past week.

More after the jump.

WSU lands four-star quarterback

From Pullman — As we noted in our practice report, prep quarterback Tyler Hilinski attended Washington State's football practice on Thursday and evidently he liked what he saw, making a verbal commitment to play for WSU according to a Rivals.com report($). Hilinski is rated the nation's 14th best quarterback by Rivals and is a four-star prospect, the second four star QB landed by Mike Leach at WSU, along with Tyler Bruggman in 2013.

Hilinski is WSU's third recruit in the class of 2015, along with defensive tackle Thomas Toki, who is also currently on campus, and cornerback Austin Joyner. 

The 6-foot-3, 187 pound quarterback plays for Upland High School in Upland, Calif., and also held a scholarship offer from Utah State. He will likely be the only quarterback recruit in the class. The Cougars have taken one scholarship quarterback in each class under Mike Leach, starting with Austin Apodaca in 2012, who has since transferred, and then Bruggman in 2013 and Peyton Bender in last year's class.

Thursday morning Pac-12 links

From Pullman — The Cougars won't be in pads when they take the field today for their final tune-up before Saturday's spring game at 1 p.m. in Spokane's Joe Albi Stadium. The Tuesday practice following that scrimmage will officially mark the end of spring football and will mean our Cougars coverage is going to really start winding down, sans the occasional baseball story.

But the Washington State football team is still making news, such as yesterday's announcement of a 2018 game against Eastern Washington. In case you missed it we have a profile of Mitch Peterson, a former walk-on safety turned scholarship linebacker. When I was in Spokane for the NCAA tournament I met ESPN's newest contributor to the Pac-12 blog, Chantel Jennings and she has her first WSU story up, a look at Vince Mayle.

That old so-and-so Christian Caple takes a look at where Washington is with spring practice in the books … The Pac-12's new coaches have been the story of spring … In its spring game Oregon will finally have to try and stop itself … The Beavers are seeing some movement in the running back depth.

Tuesday morning Pac-12 links

From Pullman — It's Spokane Week for the Washington State athletic department and here in Pullman the Cougars have just one week left of spring football. We began the week yesterday with a lunchtime chat. We also had a blog post on Gabe Marks' successful surgery as well as an off day Five Questions segment with Toni Pole. Cougar fans seemed pretty happy yesterday with the news that Bill Moos is no longer looking to make games in Seattle a priority. Last night the news came out that men's basketball coach Ernie Kent landed his first recruit at WSU.

Oregon still doesn't know who its backup quarterback will be … Arizona recruit Stanley Johnson was named California's Mr. Basketball … It was a Bruin who won the Boston Marathon … Cal's new coach has named two assistants.

WSU picks up a cornerback recruit

From Pullman — Austin Joyner of Marysville-Pilchuck high school has decided to play football at Washington State, according to his Twitter account. Joyner becomes the second known member of the class of 2015 to verbally declare their intentions to play for Mike Leach and the Cougars.

Rivals.com rates Joyner as a four-star player and ranks him the 27th best running back in the class, but he will player cornerback at WSU, according to Ransford. Last year Joyner said that he would accept a football scholarship from Washington under previous coach Steve Sarkisian.

In addition to WSU, Joyner currently claims football scholarship offers from Arkansas, Colorado, Oregon State and Washington.

Friday morning Pac-12 links

From Pullman — One of the true position battles this spring has taken place at center, where Riley Sorenson and Sam Flor are seeing equal time with the first string. Our story from yesterday's practice takes a look at that particular competition and we've got a recap of the team's 10th practice. We also reported the news yesterday that Washington State will play Gonzaga in Spokane again next season.

A Washington running back has overcome three ACL tears to get back on the football field … Here is a Q&A with Utah's defensive coordinator … Jordan Adams will put off the NBA draft another year … USC could start a true freshman on the offensive line.

Spring Practice Report: Day 9

From Pullman — After a pair of full-pads practices replete with slobber-knockers, jaw-wobblers and even a couple head-rattlers, the Cougars took it easier on Tuesday, scaling back the armament to shoulder pads, helmets and shorts and reducing the hitting to a “thud” tempo. This involves the defender hitting a ball-carrier hard enough to create a “thud” but not taking them to the ground.

More on Tuesday's practice after the jump.

Graham Harrell to join WSU football staff

Sources have confirmed that former Mike Leach quarterback Graham Harrell will be joining his old coach as a member of the football staff at Washington State. The team already has nine assistant coaches, the maximum allowed by the NCAA, so Harrell will likely serve in an operations capacity, possibly as an “offensive quality control” staffer or in some other capacity.

Harrell's addition to the staff likely won't become official for at least a couple days. When that happens we will have a better understanding what his role in the program will be.

Harrell played under Leach at Texas Tech from 2004-08 and won a Super Bowl as a backup quarterback for the Green Bay Packers. He spent the 2013 NFL preseason playing for the New York Jets but was released when the team signed Brady Quinn.

 

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Sunday morning Pac-12 links

Sebastian LaRue's athleticism has been apparent throughout the spring as the Texas A&M transfer made an immediate mark as a returner candidate on special teams while showing off his quickness and agility as a receiver on the scout team. With a crowded receiver corps and a wide open secondary the Cougars coaches  are willing to see if that playmaking ability might best be used on the defensive side of the ball. Our practice report touches on LaRue's switch to a white uniform and we have a story on Vince Mayle, who has risen to the top of that deep receiving unit.

On Friday WSU defeated No. 5 Oregon State and the Pac-12's best pitcher but Saturday saw the Beavers get some revenge.

A trio of Pac-12 squads held their spring games on Saturday. Arizona's offense was its usual flashy self, Colorado's young receivers shined and Stanford's defense appears to be overcoming its offseason losses. Cal's coaching search continues, without Chris Mack and Eric Musselman.

Friday morning Pac-12 links

From Pullman — The Cougars donned all of their pads yesterday and the result was a physical practice, complete with live tackling. Here is our story and practice report. Yesterday we also posted a video tour of the new Football Operations Building, guided by linebacker Darryl Monroe. Don't forget to change your calendars to reflect the new Nevada game date … WSU's Jason Monda has been drafted twice and decided that he won't go for a third.

Washington dismissed a defensive back, likely because of an altercation with a teammate … Oregon's best receiver is now a spring casualty … Oregon State's new offensive coordinator is becoming more comfortable in Corvallis.

Don't forget to join us at 11 a.m. for a live chat.

Thursday morning Pac-12 links

From Pullman — If you can make it out to Martin Stadium today you'll have a chance to watch Washington State's first football scrimmage of the spring. More on that here. The team got a new addition yesterday when former Boise State running back Aaron Baltazar announced he was transferring to WSU.

Washington's freshman point guard is seriously considering whether or not to turn pro … Arizona State is trying to put a positive spin on a new fee for students … UCLA's record number of basketball championships could be in jeopardy.

Also, Todd, the winner of our tournament challenge, has made his email on Yahoo! private. Please contact me Todd so we can get you your prize or we'll have to move to the next highest scorer.

Tuesday morning Pac-12 links

From Pullman — We have a new champions in college basketball, and it's Todd, winner of our tournament bracket challenge. Todd finished with 79 points and 40 correct picks. Congratulations, Todd, I'll reach out to you on Yahoo about your prize information but if for some reason I can't get ahold of you, shoot me an email at jacobt@spokesman.com.

The rest of you will have to settle for some links as a consolation prize.

- This weekend we had a spring WSU Football chat and continued our 5 Questions segment with cornerback Marcellus Pippins.

- The WSU baseball team moved to 6-3 in Pac-12 play with a series sweep of California.

- Andrew Crookston takes a look at what unionization could mean for WSU.

- Arizona is still waiting for a quarterback to take control.

- Oregon senior point guard Johnathan Loyd has joined the football team.

- Although other positions are in flux, Washington should be set along the defensive line.

Sunday morning Pac-12 links

The Cougars didn't scrimmage on Saturday, but still had a spirited practice to close out the first third of spring. Here's our practice report and a story on Washington State's young defense. In case you missed it we had a noter 5 Questions video, this time with special teams coordinator Eric Russell. There was some blue news for the Cougars yesterday when Spokane prep quarterback Brett Rypien, nephew of Mark, decided to take his prodigious talents to Boise State. But the baseball team just keeps on winning.

Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott talked about the unionization movement in college football … Here's a look at what Oregon is up to this spring … Why, even the Huskies are practicing … Cal had a big day from a little guy … USC is waltzing through spring.

Spring Practice Report: Day 5

From Pullman — A third of the way through spring practices, on Saturday it was finally the Washington State defense's turn to watch the offense do up downs at the end of practice. After allowing themselves to be outperformed early in the spring, the Cougars defenders outmuscled their offensive counterparts and took care of business in the passing game to win the fifth day of spring practice at WSU.

Thursday morning Pac-12 links

From Pullman — Lot of news following a lengthy introductory press conference for new Washington State men's basketball coach Ernie Kent.

  • Here's our story on WSU's buzzy hire.
  • We've got some reaction from WSU signee Tramaine Isabell.
  • Here's some video, notes and quotes from the press conference.
  • Here's Bud Withers' on the column from the presser.
  • And here is one from SportsPressNW's Howie Stalwick.
  • And in football news here are five questions with Sebastian LaRue.

Cougar Calls highlights

From Pullman — Bill Moos joined Cougar Calls with Bud Nameck on Monday for his weekly radio appearance. You can listen to the podcast when it's put up here, and we've put together some highlights after the jump.

Spring practice report: day 2

From Pullman — Forgive me if today's practice report isn't as meaty as Thursday's and ones to follow. During practice some basketball news was happening that proved to be more than a little distracting. Still, I think we got most of it. There were a couple new faces running with the ones today and a new quarterback got some significant reps.

Read on, after the jump.

 

 

WSU reportedly offers basketball coaching candidate

 

From Pullman — The above tweet is from ASWSU president Taylor Hennessey who heard it directly from school President Elson Floyd at this month's meeting of the Board of Regents. There is no word on when the offer was made or if the candidate is likely to accept.

Still, it appears likely then that Washington State will have its new basketball coach soon. We'll try and update things as fast as we can.

Five position battles to keep an eye on in WSU spring practices

From Pullman — This season the Cougars will have the luxury of an experienced group, particularly on offense. While Washington State is still young, the majority of the starters have a good deal of in game experience. However, the are some areas where the Cougars will be green. With that in mind, here is a look at five positions where playing time will be up for grabs.

Tuesday morning Pac-12 links

From Pullman — Spring practice is just days away for the Washington State football team and the Cougars are already getting ready. And so is the media. WSU released its Spring roster on Monday and we've got a post detailing the differences we could find between the roster now and at the end of the 2013 season. Coaches Mike Leach and Mike Breske also appeared on Cougar Calls with Bill Moos yesterday to talk about the team. We've got some highlights from that discussion here. Moos also touched on the ongoing coaching search, something that we have a story on here. Speaking of coaches, former WSU coach Kelvin Sampson has emerged as a leading candidate for the Houston job.

UCLA will travel to the Windy City to take on Kentucky next season … Cal continued to advance in the NIT with a win over Arkansas on Monday … Suddenly Stanford has a chance to go to the Elite Eight.

Cougar Calls highlights

From Pullman — Washington State athletic director Bill Moos joined Bud Nameck on KXLY 920 for Cougar Calls this morning and it was a pretty eventful show. Spring football starts on Thursday for WSU so the duo hosted both defensive coordinator Mike Breske and head football coach Mike Leach.

Highlights from those interviews, as well as some information from Moos regarding his search for a new basketball coach, are after the jump.

Monday morning Pac-12 links

From Pullman — The weekend passed and the Washington State men's basketball team remains without a long-term coach. While former Ken Bone assistant Curtis Allen has been placed in charge to oversee the day-to-day operations of the team we still don't know who the next Cougars coach will be. Former Oregon coach Ernie Kent's name has often been linked to the vacancy due to his close ties with WSU athletic director Bill Moos. Word out of San Diego last week was that Kent is very much interested. Another coach to keep an eye on is Marvin Menzies out of New Mexico State. Menzies coached the Aggies in Spokane last Thursday when they nearly-upset San Diego State. Menzies has made hay on the recruiting trail, particularly in Toronto. Could a move north make sense for the former assistant to Rick Pitino and Steve Fisher?

The WSU baseball team fell in extra-innings to No. 14 UCLA … Stanford knocked Kansas out of the NCAA tournament yesterday … Arizona beat up Gonzaga pretty bad yesterday. Jim Meehan has the game story from San Diego and John Blanchette has a column … UCLA took some heat off coach Steve Alford by advancing to the Sweet 16.

Tuesday morning Pac-12 links

From Pullman — That 36-game losing streak to Washington? It wasn't even the longest drought the Washington State women ended this season. No, yesterday's invitation to the WNIT means WSU will be making its first postseason trip in women's basketball in 23 years. The Cougars will head all the way to Montana for their matchup against … Montana. While they're there maybe they can beat the Huskies again. A little late but here's a good piece illustrating just how good DaVonte Lacy was for the men this season.

Even as the No. 1 seed Arizona has found a chip for its shoulder … A number of instate coaches are feeling the heat.