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Washington State football chat transcript - 10/31

Oct 31, 10:01 AM srchat (Admin): Happy Halloween, folks. Thanks for joining me and let’s get going here. Oct 31, 10:01 AM ScaryUncleLarry (Guest): Boo! Oct 31, 10:02 AM srchat (Admin): -bie Williams… Oct 31, 10:02 AM Sammy-Schroeder (Guest): How do you think the Cougs match up with Cal this year? Oct 31, 10:05 AM srchat (Admin): Cal’s pass defense ranks as the best in the Pac-12 right now, and they’re tied with Oregon for most interceptions. Then the Cougars have always had trouble with Beau Baldwin offenses. So … not great, according to those two things. But I still believe WSU is far superior talent wise. Oct 31, 10:05 AM CougarCottage (Guest): Let’s get it out of the way ealy… Sean Harper? Oct 31, 10:06 AM srchat (Admin): I don’t have an update on him and presume I won’t until I arrive to the game on Saturday. Sorry… Oct 31, 10:06 AM Guest536 (Guest): Will Beau Baldwin have WSU’s number again? That guy is a genius. If Leach ever leaves, hire him! Oct 31, 10:10 AM srchat (Admin): Third time’s the charm, right? The Cougs would like to think so… Oct 31, 10:10 AM ScaryUncleLarry (Guest): I think I am seeing a lot less tunnel and bubble screens this year (thankfully!). Why is that? Oct 31, 10:14 AM srchat (Admin): Those bubble screens to Tay Martin just haven’t been very effective. Not sure if it’s a result of poor blocking or teams are scoping it a little better than they have in the past. Oct 31, 10:14 AM Sammy-Schroeder (Guest): It was good to see Oguayo last week, is there any chance Sean Harper plays this week? Oct 31, 10:15 AM srchat (Admin): Yes, Oguayo is a great depth piece for the D-line and could still see him back in the fold as a starter if he can stay healthy. I don’t know much about Harper. We’re kept in the dark when it comes to injuries and practices are closed off to the media. Oct 31, 10:15 AM Guest235 (Guest): How do you view WSU’s CFP ranking? Too hot? Too cold? Or a Goldy Locks-esque just right? Oct 31, 10:17 AM srchat (Admin): It’s maybe a bit higher than what I expected. But somewhere around the 10-12 range seemed about right, given they were 10 in the AP and 11 in the Coaches’ poll. I was surprised to see them higher than Ohio St. Oct 31, 10:17 AM Guest5543 (Guest): A lot of new wrinkles in the offense vs Stanford in terms of motions and formations for Leach. You think he is having fun being able to add new things to his offense? Oct 31, 10:19 AM srchat (Admin): Yes, and I think Minshew gives him the flexibility to do that. I also like the addition of those two-back sets. This backfield is special and you can tell they’re trying to take advantage of it. Oct 31, 10:19 AM Sammy-Schroeder (Guest): I noticed that George Hicks played some against Stanford, do you see him getting more playing time being that our corners aren’t very good? Oct 31, 10:20 AM srchat (Admin): With Harper Jr. out of the picture, it isn’t too surprising. He’s the fourth-best corner on the team and they need to rotate Molton/Strong out when they can. It’s good experience for him given that Molton and Harper are gone next year. Oct 31, 10:20 AM MrCougFan (Guest): Do you know how Minshew feels about his choice to come to WSU at this point? What its like here vs at ECU? I know he is humble and has stated he is enjoying himself, but he has got to be over the moon with being a passing leader, on track to break Goffs single season Pac 12 record, being catapulted into NFL Draft conversations with his performance. He went from being a player wanting to transition into coaching, to a player who wanted 1 more year of ball, to a player who has a shot at the next level Oct 31, 10:22 AM srchat (Admin): I think it’s been a perfect marriage for both parties. Minshew needed WSU and WSU needed Minshew. Yogi Roth of the Pac-12 Networks told me last week it’s one of the best college football stories of the last 5-7 years, considering what Minshew’s been through and what WSU’s been through. He’s certainly soaking it in. Oct 31, 10:23 AM ScaryUncleLarry (Guest): Why didn’t they double Whiteside in the first half like they did in the second half? Oct 31, 10:25 AM srchat (Admin): They generally feel good about one-on-one matchups with their corners, but clearly it wasn’t working against Arcega-Whiteside. In my estimation, he’s the best receiver they’ve seen all year. Oct 31, 10:25 AM Guest7789 (Guest): Leach had said this is his most coachable team he has had. What do you attribute that to? Minshew-Pelluer leadership, different dynamics from the new coaches or maybe just being in the same system for so long. Oct 31, 10:29 AM srchat (Admin): The senior leadership is the main factor, I’d guess. I don’t see too many egos on this team, either, and feels like Leach isn’t grilling players like he has in years past. I.e. we haven’t gotten the JC softball speech yet. Oct 31, 10:29 AM Sammy-Schroeder (Guest): Do you think we are going to start to see more Freshman play these last 4 games due to the new red-shirt rule? Oct 31, 10:29 AM CougarCottage (Guest): Is J Williams thinking of leaving early? Anyone thinking of leaving early? Oct 31, 10:31 AM srchat (Admin): Sammy - I do think so. Halid Djibril made a cameo in the Stanford game, so I’d imagine they’ll try to get him his four games. I believe Tyrese Ross still has two games left, so I think we’ll see more of him as well. Oct 31, 10:35 AM srchat (Admin): CougarCottage - Would be surprised if it wasn’t in the back of his head, but my gut tells me he’ll stick around another year. NFL scouts know who Jalen Thompson, but I don’t think he’s been stellar as a junior so I’d imagine he comes back, too. I wonder if Dezmon Patmon would have an opportunity, as well, given his measurables and production this season. Oct 31, 10:35 AM Guest7789 (Guest): Your interview with the coaches are fun to listen to. Coach Phelps seems like the the most personable one. Kind of a person one would like to have dinner with. Your thoughts on him. Oct 31, 10:37 AM srchat (Admin): I’d definitely accept a dinner invite to the Phelps household. You hit the nail on the head. Very personable and kind-hearted. Always insightful when I chat with him, too. I’ve heard he has quite the basketball shoe collection, too. Perhaps a story idea for down the road… Oct 31, 10:38 AM ScaryUncleLarry (Guest): As far as “most coachable team” Leach said he only has to correct things once with this team which allows him to teach new things. Oct 31, 10:38 AM srchat (Admin): Indeed. Leach dove into this topic during Monday’s news conference. Oct 31, 10:38 AM Sammy-Schroeder (Guest): Do you think Tracy Claeys come back next year? Oct 31, 10:42 AM srchat (Admin): Right now, yes. I’m not sure he’d leave for another defensive coordinator position and seems like he enjoys the freedom Leach has given him at WSU. Oct 31, 10:43 AM srchat (Admin): To add to that, I think he’d explore the market for other head coaching opportunities, but imagine he’s still a year or two away from pursing that again. Oct 31, 10:43 AM GoCougs (Guest): Cal isn’t averaging a ton of points per game but what are the biggest offensive threats our defense will need to watch for? Oct 31, 10:46 AM srchat (Admin): Patrick Laird, the running back, is probably their top skill player and the Cougars didn’t see him last year in Berkeley. They have an extremely mobile QB in Brandon McIlwain, too. Oct 31, 10:46 AM ScaryUncleLarry (Guest): Is there much “Bear raid” left with Wilcox as the head coach now? Oct 31, 10:50 AM srchat (Admin): The “Bear Raid” is as good as gone. Beau Baldwin’s offenses have always been pretty balanced and play to their strengths. Throwing the ball definitely isn’t a strength of this Cal team. Oct 31, 10:51 AM Sammy-Schroeder (Guest): Who will start for Cal, Garbers or Mcllwain, or will we see both? Oct 31, 10:53 AM srchat (Admin): It seems like Garbers has been the guy the last few games, but they do some different stuff with McIlwain, so I imagine he’ll come into the game occasionally. Oct 31, 10:53 AM ScaryUncleLarry (Guest): Best Halloween candy? Oct 31, 10:55 AM srchat (Admin): 1. Butterfingers. 2. Butterfingers. 3. Butterfingers. Those fat Tootsie Rolls are pretty good, too. Oct 31, 10:56 AM srchat (Admin): Anyone else have input on the Halloween candy question? Oct 31, 10:57 AM ScaryUncleLarry (Guest): 1,000 Grand is always overlooked. Oct 31, 10:59 AM srchat (Admin): We’ll end on that sweet note (Ha ha). Thanks to those who joined this week and if you haven’t already, head over for all your WSU-Cal game-week coverage.