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Beau Glover to leave WSU

Safety Beau Glover indicated on his Twitter account that he is leaving the Washington State football program. 

On Friday morning the redshirt sophomore tweeted, "Can't thank coach Mike Leach, coach Chris Reinert, coach Ken Wilson, coach Eric Mele and all the other coaches for everything they did! I'm going to miss playing for them.

Glover came to WSU as a walk-on in 2012 and had an impressive ability to always be around the ball, despite lacking prototypical Pac-12 safety size. He played very well in 2013 spring practices and played in five games this past season, making five tackles.

Update: 12:01 p.m. — Here is an update from Glover himself.
  

WSU rolls over Mike Leach’s contract, as expected

We reported awhile ago that Bill Moos planned to allow Mike Leach's contract to roll over, in effect extending it until 2019.

Because we've been getting some email about the subject recently I thought I'd put up this post to remind people that it happened. Leach's contract has a provision that states that it automatically renews the length at five years on Jan. 1 of each year unless either Moos or Leach provide written notice stopping the automatic extension.

The extension also resets the clock on both the buyout Leach would have to pay to pursuit another job ($2.25 million if he leaves in year one of the contract) and the buyout the school would have to pay to terminate his contract without cause (60 percent of the base salary due for the remainder of the agreement).

Cougars land Oklahoma receiver

Oklahoma wide receiver Dahu Green is headed to Washington State, according to multiple recruiting outlets.

Green is 6-foot-4, 188-pounds, and will likely help compose the next generation of big outside receivers in WSU's Air Raid. He was previously committed to Louisville and reportedly held scholarship offers from Boise State, Cincinnati, Kentucky, Virginia and others.

Rivals.com rates Green the No. 45 receiver in the country and a three star prospect. He joins Deontay Burnett and Kyle Sweet in WSU's receiver class, as well as Clemson transfer Kyrin Priester, who is already on campus.

Here is a video of a spectacular play Green made that calls to mind a similar one-handed catch once made by another high school star with the same last name, the NFL's A.J. Green

Just for fun, here is the A.J. Green catch.

 

Xavier Cooper will enter the NFL draft

Cooper, 23, is a junior but says he will take online classes to graduate in May with a degree in criminal justice. The 6-foot-4, 300-pound lineman played his high school ball at Tacoma's Wilson High.

"It was a tough decision just because I'm leaving the university that gave so much to me and my family: the opportunity for me to even be here and receive an education," Cooper said. "That was a tough decision but ultimately me and my family realized the opportunity doesn't happen very often for anybody and it was there for the taking and I felt that it was in my heart to go get it."

While the NFL draft advisory board recommended that he stay in school, that is the required recommendation for anyone that is not expected to be a first or second round selection.

NFL draft analyst Rob Rang of CBS says that Cooper does not have to fear going undrafted.

"He's probably an early day-three player, which would mean fourth round," Rang said. "I could see third round. He's a big, athletic guy who moves well. He's shown versatility at defensive tackle and defensive end. You'd like him to be a little bit stronger but he's a legitimate talent."

Cooper started for three years at either defensive tackle or defensive end for WSU. He led the Cougars with five sacks and 9.5 tackles for loss this season. The Cougars will have a decidedly different look on the defensive line next season, as fellow longtime starter Kalafitoni Pole has graduated and is pursuing his own NFL dreams.

He plans to sign with an agent shortly and believes he will be invited to the NFL scouting combine.

"It's a risk but there's risk in anything you want in life and you can't be afraid to fail," Cooper said. "Anything I've wanted I've had to beat the obstacle of being afraid but you can't go anywhere if you're afraid."

While I had Rang on the telephone, I also asked him about some of WSU's other NFL draft prospects.

Here's what he had to say about wide receiver Vince Mayle:

You know, at this point I would say that he's also a third or fourth rounder. It's going to come down to two things. One, he's obviously been very, very productive this year. I'm very curious to see how he performs at the Senior Bowl where he's not the featured target and has to play a more traditional role. And then how he runs the 40-yard dash. He's a very big player and does have some agility and acceleration for a big guy but he's not as physical a blocker as you might think and I just question his pure, straight-line speed.

He's a guy that obviously had a productive season, he's got a chance to really boost his stock if he performs well in the workouts.

Rang added that the drops that plagued Mayle late in the season will be a big concern for NFL teams and that they make it all the more imperative that he performs well in the Senior Bowl and at the combine.

Vince Mayle to attend NFL scouting combine

Vince Mayle appears to have accepted an invitation to the NFL scouting combine, posting the news on his Instagram account.

The combine is an annual showcase in which prospective NFL draftees participate in a series of drills designed to measure their strength and athleticism. They also meet with representatives from NFL teams in a series of interviews to gauge whether or not the player is a good citizen and a good fit for an organization.

In 2014 Mayle led the Pac-12 with 106 receptions and 1,483 receiving yards.

The combine is held every February in Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. Getting an invitation is considered a very good indicator that a player will be drafted in the spring.

 

Blessed for the opportunity to chase my dreams….

A photo posted by @vincemayle1 on

WSU’s Pole to play in NFLPA Collegiate Bowl

(WSU's Kalafitoni Pole (No. 98) celebrates with teammates after a big play.)

Washington State defensive lineman Kalafitoni Pole will play in the 2015 NFLPA Collegiate Bowl.

The game, hosted by the NFL Players Association, provides a showcase for draft-eligible seniors to compete in front of NFL scouts on Saturday, Jan. 17. The game will be televised on ESPN2 and practices leading up to the game will be broadcasted live on ESPNU.

The full press release from the NFLPA is after the jump.

Report: Daquawn Brown dismissed by Mike Leach (UPDATED)


(Update: 4:13 p.m.) University of Washington freshman cornerback Naijiel Hale posted on Twitter that the report regarding Brown's dismissal was incorrect, and that the talented cornerback has actually been suspended.

(Update: 4:50 p.m.) I can confirm that Daquawn Brown has been dismissed and there does not appear to be an avenue for his reinstatement.

Washington State football coach Mike Leach has dismissed cornerback Daquawn Brown, his team's leading tackler and most experienced defensive back, according to an internet report.



The team does not publicly address player dismissals and Leach could not immediately be reached for comment.

 We'll update this post if we learn more.

Follow the jump for more on Brown's reported dismissal.

Morning links: what’s going on at Utah

Both of Utah's coordinators have taken positions elsewhere and it sounds like coach Kyle Whittingham may soon follow.

Defensive coordinator Kilani Sitake took the same position at Oregon State while offensive coordinator Dave Christensen will head to Texas A&M as the running game coordinator.

This article explains that tensions are high in the Utes athletic department and even Whittingham may be looking for a change of scenery after 20 years in Salt Lake City.

Two Pac-12 teams play their bowl games today. Previews of those games and other links are after the jump.

Kevin Griffin leaves Washington State football program

I can confirm that freshman cornerback Kevin Griffin has left the Washington State football program, as indicated on his Twitter account.

Griffin played in three games this past season and made his first and only start in WSU's win at Oregon State. He finishes his career at WSU with two tackles.

Follow the jump for more.

Three more Riverside recruits headed to WSU

WSU's defense could look markedly different next season. In fact, it could look a lot like the one at Riverside CC.

 

Following yesterday's news that Riverside's Treshon Broughton will play at Washington State rather than Oregon State, today three of his teammates decided to follow suit.

 

Follow the jump for more.

WSU flips an OSU recruit

Washington State's defensive backfield got a little older today with JC cornerback Treshon Broughton's college switch.

More on WSU's newest recruit after the jump.

Darryl Monroe leaves the Cougars

Darryl Monroe entered last season as the spokesman of the Washington State defense.

Well-spoken and a two-year starter heading into his junior season, Monroe was WSU's defensive representative at Pac-12 Media Days and was asked to further engage with fans by conducting video walkthroughs of the football operations building and interviewing freshmen in short videos produced by the athletic department.

On the first day of fall camp he tried to set the tone for the season, saying, "Last year was just a taste, it was like a little drop of blood to a shark. He's fiending so now we're fiending for success, so right now the sky isn't even the limit. We're trying to go past that, go to outer space."

Now, Monroe has quit the team. Cougfan.com's Chris Shaw first reported Monroe's departure and I have since confirmed it.

More on this after the jump.

 

 

Who is standing out in WSU’s defensive coordinator search?

Covering a coaching search can be like playing in a national game of Telephone.

You hear some names of prospective candidates that make no sense and some that make a lot of sense, and just when you think you've zeroed in on the candidate somebody completely new will get the job. Just take this morning's announcement that Oregon State's Mike Riley will take over at Nebraska when everyone thought the job belonged to Scott Frost, for example.

It's entirely possible that the names you hear associated with vacant jobs were never even contacted by the schools doing the searching. Still, it's fun for everyone to try and guess who will be hired and so we'll pass along some names we're hearing more often than others, after the jump.

Vince Mayle named Second Team All-Pac-12

Washington State receiver Vince Mayle was named Second Team All-Pac-12, the conference announced Tuesday.

Mayle tied for the national lead with 106 receptions and set the WSU single-season record with 1,483 receiving yards.The redshirt senior led the Pac-12 with six 100-yard receiving games and was the only college football player this season with two games of more than 250 receiving yards. He was also a semifinalist for the Biletnikoff Award, which is given to the nation's top receiver.

More after the jump.

Key numbers from the WSU season

WSU finished the regular season with the nation's No. 1 passing offense margin, throwing for 477.7 yards per game.

How good was Washington State at moving the ball through the air? Well, Western Kentucky was No. 2 in that category with 365 passing yards, or 112.7 yards per game than the Cougars.

All those yards didn't always produce points, however, and the Cougars were merely 45th in scoring offense. In sports the numbers never tell the whole story, but they can serve as a pretty compelling guide.

We take a look at some of the numbers that define WSU's 2014 season after the jump.

Four names to watch in WSU’s coaching search

Washington State coach Mike Leach is in the market for a new defensive coordinator and finding one may not require a lengthy search.

Speaking on his weekly Cougar Calls radio show with Bud Nameck on KXLY 920, WSU athletic director Bill Moos said that Leach has a short list of about six potential candidates and that he expects the Cougars to have a new defensive coordinator soon.

More on WSU’s coaching search after the jump.

Two WSU linebackers named to Pac-12 All-Academic first team

The Pac-12 released its 2014 football All-Academic teams and Washington State linebackers Mitch Peterson and Peyton Pelluer both made first team. Pelluer, a redshirt freshman, earned a 3.77 grade-point average and has not declared a major while Peterson, a senior, earned a 3.75 GPA as a marketing major.

Offensive linemen Jacob Seydel and Sam Flor were named All-Academic honorable mention, as was wide receiver River Cracraft.

The release from the Pac-12 containing the full list of players that were honored is after the jump.

 

WSU defensive coordinator Mike Breske dismissed

The day after Washington State's season ended with a 31-13 Apple Cup loss, Mike Leach dismissed defensive coordinator Mike Breske and outside linebackers coach Paul Volero.

"We decided to make a change and wish them the best," Leach said.

More on WSU's coaching change after the jump.

(Update 7:12 p.m. — I have been told that defensive line coach Joe Salave'a has been promoted to assistant head coach.)

WSU practice: one last underclassmen scrimmage

WSU held its final Thursday Night Football scrimmage of the season before heading off for Thanksgiving celebrations.

We have our report on the young guys who stood out after the jump.

WSU practice: last full one of the season

If the Cougars stick to their normal weekly routine then today's practice was the last full one of the season.

Washington State will have a morning practice tomorrow and then head to the bowling alley for Thanksgiving food and activities.

Our report from today's practice is after the jump.

WSU practice: no sign of Vince Mayle

Washington State's most dominant receiver wasn't at practice on Tuesday but still got some bad news afterward.

Vince Mayle already holds WSU single season records with 101 receptions for 1,404 yards. He's had two games with more than 250 receiving yards this season. But he wasn't one of the three Biletnikoff Award semifinalists announced by the Quarterback Club of Tallahassee today.

Who was? Alabama's Amari Cooper for one. OK, good decision, he's widely considered college football's best receiver and the only pass-catcher who's a serious Heisman candidate. Also Colorado State's Rashard Higgins was named a finalist. Makes sense, his team is 10-1 and the sophomore receiver leads the nation with 1,447 receiving yards and with 15 touchdown receptions, despite missing one game with a shoulder injury.

But the third finalist? West Virginia's Kevin White? He's had some pretty ridiculous catches on Sportscenter this season but the Mountaineers aren't having an exceptional year and Mayle has him beat in most meaningful receiving categories.

He'll have a chance to pad those statistics in the Apple Cup according to his coaches, despite his Tuesday absence.

When asked if the team would have Mayle available on Saturday coach Mike Leach replied, "Yes, we should. We're all healthy. Why wouldn't we?"

We've got a practice report after the jump.

Steve Gleason to be honored after first Apple Cup quarter

Washington State announced earlier this year that Steve Gleason will be the lone Hall of Fame inductee this year, and that he would be honored during a home game this season.

Well, it's been apparent that the game would be the Apple Cup since it's been the Cougars' only remaining home game for a few weeks now. But now we know precisely when it will happen, thanks to a press release today from WSU Athletics. Gleason will be honored between the first and second quarters on Saturday. WSU Team Gleason (which is distinct from the New Orleans-based Team Gleason organization) is doing some cool things with technology to help people with ALS and will have a presence at the game to raise ALS awareness.

The school's release is after the jump.

Vince Mayle accepts Senior Bowl invitation

Washington State receiver Vince Mayle has accepted an invitation to play in the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama on Jan. 24. The game and the practices leading up to it, along with the NFL Combine, is one of the best chances prospective NFL draftees have to impress scouts and general managers. Hundreds of active NFL players once played in the Senior Bowl and the 2013 NFL Pro Bowl had 21 former Senior Bowlers, 16 of whom started.

The school's press release is after the jump.