Latest from The Spokesman-Review
From Pullman — Today got a lot more interesting with the news yesterday that a pair of players will transfer from the Washington State men's basketball program. Their open scholarships, along with that of signee Jermaine Morgan who will be released from his National Letter of Intent, mean that WSU could sign as many as four players in the late signing period, which runs from today until May 21.
The football team practiced yesterday and we have a practice report and a story on Sebastian LaRue's transition to cornerback. We also put up a Q&A with strength coach Jason Loscalzo this weekend. The baseball team beat Gonzaga in Spokane and Chris Derrick was on hand to write the recap … Cal has found its new men's basketball coach … The NCAA has agreed to let athletes have unlimited meals … The Ducks have been moving at an unusually slow pace.
Join us at 11 a.m. for a live WSU chat.
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.
In yesterday's paper we had a story on Vince Mayle, who has dropped 20 pounds since arriving at Washington State and the lithe receiver has been showing off his increased speed all spring. For the story I spoke at length with strength and conditioning coach Jason Loscalzo, not just about Mayle but also River Cracraft, new recruits and more.
We've transcribed the highlights of that interview, after the jump.
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.
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.
From Pullman — There was no “scrimmage” but Washington State's football practice on Saturday had live tackling, fights, guests, a potential position switch and a lot of moms.
Our practice report is after the jump.
Two more Cougars joined us this week for our Five Questions segment. This time it's wide receiver Kristoff Williams and offensive lineman Cole Madison.
Those videos are after the jump.
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.
From Pullman — The Football Operations Building won't open for about five more weeks but linebacker Darryl Monroe starred in a video that shows how much has been done, and how much remains to be done before it's christening on May 19.
From Pullman—There has been a schedule change for the Washington State football team, with its game at Nevada being moved up to 7:30 p.m. on Friday. More on that after the jump.
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.
From Pullman — Former Boise State running back Aaron Baltazar will transfer to Washington State, WSU announced on Wednesday. Baltazar must sit out the 2014 season per NCAA transfer rules, then will have three years of eligibility remaining.
More on WSU's new running back after the jump.
From Pullman — I have some work-related errands to run up in Spokane today so unfortunately we won't be able to have our typical off-day chat. I know it's hard. But just thing how much we'll have to talk about on Friday.
If you're in Spokane today you can meet WSU's new men's basketball coach, Ernie Kent … Washington State's young secondary had some growing pains yesterday … Here's our story on WSU's running backs and returning leader Marcus Mason … June Daugherty's contract was extended after the WSU women made the NIT … Yale Rosen was named the Pac-12 Player of the Week in baseball after batting 7 for 10 in the Cougars sweep of California.
ESPN's Kevin Gemmell unloads in his Pac-12 mailbag … Could Washington's most important new coach be the guy in the weight room? … Marcus Mariota seems to thinks he's well-compensated for his exploits on the football field … Four positions wasn't enough for one Wildcat.
From Pullman — Washington State's youth in the secondary has been apparent throughout spring. But on Tuesday the offense worked on deep throws and the inexperience of WSU's defensive backs was particularly apparent.
“We went downfield the whole time,” coach Mike Leach said after practice. “I can’t say it was their best day, I don’t think they necessarily regressed. They keep improving but we put a lot of pressure on them today and I thought the offense was pretty sharp.”
But hey, the wide receivers had a good day.
Our practice report is after the jump.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
The rest of you will have to settle for some links as a consolation prize.
- 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.
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.
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.
Eric Russell is Washington State's special teams coordinator and assistant head coach. After Thursday's practice he answered 5 questions about life as a WSU coach.
Practice four is in the books for WSU and we saw some good work out of the offense. The defense had some moments as well, but not enough to avoid up downs.
“I thought they battled back,” coach Mike Leach said after practice. “I thought defense, that’s the biggest thing is everybody’s out here trading blows and the result is everybody gets better, quicker.”
Our practice report is after the jump.
From Pullman — Just like that the Cougars are 20 percent of the way through spring football practice. They're also just a few hours away from officially introducing Ernie Kent as the new men's basketball coach. Keep an eye out for our coverage from that. Today we'll be having another live chat at noon to talk about both football and basketball. Brush up with yesterday's practice report and our story on WSU's visitor. We've also got our weekly college baseball notebook featuring coach Donnie Marbut's return.
From Pullman — The pads went on Tuesday’s and the Washington State football team had easily its most spirited practice of the spring. There was constant hollering from the sidelines, a few light scuffles broke out and the coaches didn’t seem to mind a bit.
Our practice report is after the jump.
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.
From Pullman — Connecticut, Florida, Kentucky and Wisconsin. The Final Four is set and that means the college basketball season is almost over. It also likely signals the coming end of the Washington State coaching search as athletic director Bill Moos plainly said he hoped to have the hire in place before the NCAA tournament was over. The hire could be announced today or it could be announced a week from today. Likely, it will happen sometime in between.
On Sunday we put up some notes and quotes from Saturday's practice and we had a live chat as well … With Marquise Lee entering the draft USC has already found his replacement … the Stanford women advanced to the Elite Eight … One Oregon unit isn't looking exactly championship caliber yet.
From Pullman — The Cougars were up early Saturday morning for their second practice of spring football. Here is our practice report and a story on the offensive line. More notes and quotes from practice after the jump.
From Pullman — Hope you didn't sleep in on Saturday. If you did you missed a flurry of Cougars news, not to mention some pretty great cartoons. The day began with Washington State's second spring football practice. We've got a practice report and a story on WSU's young offensive line. Soon after, we learned that the Cougars were making a second run at Boise State's Leon Rice. By mid-afternoon, however, we learned the Rice was going to stay put.