MOSCOW, Idaho – At long last, the final moments of a game had gone Idaho’s way, but men’s basketball coach Don Verlin felt no need to dodge what could have been the major story line. The Vandals panicked, he said. They led Fresno State by five points with 2 minutes, 50 seconds remaining. And they started to let their nerves get to them.
MOSCOW, Idaho – Near the end of the worst half Idaho has played this season, Kyle Barone cradled the ball in the paint … and then watched it inexplicably squirt away. Instead of pursuing the ball, the Vandals’ power forward gave a puzzled look to an official and headed back to play defense. It was the low moment Thursday night for the turnover-prone Barone, and it was one of many head-scratching miscues for Idaho in a 73-55 loss to Nevada in the Western Athletic Conference men’s basketball opener for both teams.
MOSCOW, Idaho – Near the end of the worst half Idaho has played this season, Kyle Barone cradled the ball in the paint … and then watched it inexplicably squirt away. Instead of pursuing the ball, the Vandals’ power forward gave a puzzled look to an official and headed back to play defense.
MOSCOW, Idaho – The Western Athletic Conference has been in flux for more than a year, with schools leaving, hopping aboard and – in the case of Boise State – soon-to-be rejoining the conference in all sports but football and wrestling. The changes have come at such a frantic pace that it’s hard to keep tabs on which schools are going where. But this much we know: The impact of BSU’s departure last summer has already been felt in football and will start to be noticed this week on the basketball court.
MOSCOW, Idaho – It was clear from the earliest moments Saturday night: Something was amiss with Stephen Madison’s usually reliable 3-point stroke for the Idaho Vandals. That might have been an issue last season, but not so far this year.
MOSCOW, Idaho – Last week Robb Akey was adamant his existing coaching staff at the University of Idaho was still intact. But he qualified his statement by noting no changes had been made “at this point in time.” That point came Monday, when UI announced Steve Axman had retired after five seasons as the team’s offensive coordinator.
PULLMAN – Early in the first half, before this Sunday afternoon game became a snoozer, Charlie Enquist showed a physical side – and confidence – that hasn’t always been there during his Washington State career. The 6-foot-10 senior – who came to Pullman five years ago weighing just over 190 pounds – got his hands on an offensive rebound in traffic and followed with a strong layup under the basket.
MOSCOW, Idaho – Following an end-of-the-season meeting with his boss, Idaho football coach Robb Akey said he’s clear on the best direction for the Vandals’ program. And as of now, the plan does not include restructuring his coaching staff. “I have not made any changes to the staff at this point in time,” Akey told The Spokesman-Review on Tuesday.
Following an end-of-the-season meeting with his boss, Idaho football coach Robb Akey said he’s clear on the best direction for the Vandals’ program. And as of now, the plan does not include restructuring his coaching staff.
MOSCOW, Idaho – Bobby Cowan was the newbie in 2008, an 18-year-old freshman who shadowed T.J. Conley during the most successful season for a punter in University of Idaho history. A year later, Conley – who had graduated and started auditions for NFL clubs – bequeathed the Vandals’ punting responsibilities to Cowan. And there’s scarcely been a drop-off since.
MOSCOW, Idaho – Eastern Washington University finally has a men’s basketball breakthrough against a Northwest foe. Now the Eagles are ready to make a statement this weekend – against another neighboring school. After eight-point losses to Gonzaga and Oregon earlier this year, the Eagles crafted a 73-66 triumph over Idaho at Memorial Gym on Wednesday night.
MOSCOW, Idaho – Most students were still on Thanksgiving break and the small crowd inside Memorial Gym – announced at just 906 – never got overly boisterous. But it didn’t matter Saturday night. When it comes to playing at this quaint gym on the University of Idaho campus, the Vandals under Don Verlin almost always look comfortable.
Over and over Saturday, the Idaho Vandals found themselves in position to win or keep alive one of the zaniest games inside the Kibbie Dome in years. A field goal from place-kicker Trey Farquhar came within inches of curling inside the left upright. Brian Reader’s pass to an outstretched Mike Scott, who had one toe down near the sideline, looked to be a catch.
MOSCOW, Idaho – When Robb Akey referred to Princeton McCarty and Derek Wieting as the “gray-haired old men” of the Idaho football program, the coach meant the comment as a lighthearted poke at two veteran players. But he also said it for a reason.
MOSCOW, Idaho – Before last week’s fourth-quarter explosion at San Jose State, it had been a fallow two months for Idaho. The defense and special teams unit were producing more touchdowns than the offense, close losses were becoming routine and fans were growing weary. But Robb Akey never budged. He was adamant that a breakthrough, no matter how it came, would breathe new life into UI’s season.
MOSCOW, Idaho – The Idaho football team has practiced the last two weeks with questions – at least from the outside – on who would start at quarterback for the Vandals. But there’s no such uncertainty for Saturday’s game at BYU: coach Robb Akey said Monday that sophomore Taylor Davis will be under center against the Cougars, and perhaps for the rest of the season.
PULLMAN – The small crowd that gathered Saturday night at Beasley Coliseum had plenty of time to get acquainted with all the newcomers on the Washington State men’s basketball team. Three of the Cougars’ familiar faces, though, didn’t make it off the bench.