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Life Without Polk

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Life Without Chris Polk -- Husky Links

Let me begin by thanking Washington Sports Network for letting me blog for them. I promise to not you guys down.

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Price Increase

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Will Price Have A Drop Off In Production This Coming Season?

huskies keirh price

I laid out a tease to everyone on twitter and it was that I think that Keith Price will not have a drop off in production this coming season and I will tell you why, it is because of the targets he still has and is building relationships with like Austin Seferian Jenkins, Kasen Williams, James Johnson, Cody Bruns and even guys like Michael Hartvigson and Evan Hudson.

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Dawg Days Begin!

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Let’s Get Ready For Some Husky Football

uw football camp day1 2012

Well everyone yesterday marked day one of fall camp, which means that college football has officially started. At the first press conference of the year, Steve Sarkisian announced that linebackers Matt Lyons has decided to transfer, true freshman wide receiver Dwayne Washington has yet to be cleared by the NCAA and Cory Littleton has been cleared.

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All-New Cougs!

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Cougs Week 1 Preview

The 2012 edition of the Washington State Cougar football team come loaded with high hopes and expectations.  After coming a few plays from being bowl eligible, the Cougs got rid of Paul Wulff to bring in a winner in Mike Leach.  The WSU Cougars show their new look to a nationwide audience during the second game of ESPN’s kickoff special on Thursday, August 30th at 7:15 against the always competitive BYU Cougars. 

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Monday Mourning QB

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Don't Abandon Ship

As much as it hurts lets take a look back at Thursday's game.

BYU quarterback Riley Nelson threw for 285 yards on 25 for 36 passing and 2 touchdowns as he led his Brigham Young team to an Impressive 30-6 victory over the new look Washington State Cougars.

The hype and excitement surrounded LaVelle Edwards Stadium in Provo as the WSU Cougars and their new look offense took on the Cougars of BYU.  Many questions surrounded this game.  Was BYU’s offense going to start out where they left off last season averaging 35 points in their final 10 games?  Is WSU and Jeff Tuel going to be able to understand this new Mike Leach offense against the stacked defense of BYU? How is WSU’s young defense going to improve from a weak 2011 season?byupost1

A new coach with an impressive resume, a proven senior quarterback, and a star receiver gave WSU Cougar fans all the reason to be excited about the new season.  The only problem is that the Cougs were playing a loaded team both offensively and defensively in BYU.

It was a rude awakening to start the 2012 campaign for the WSU cougars.  After a defensive stop on BYU’s first drive, WSU put together a methodical drive that saw Jeff Tuel go 8 for 9 before a tipped ball interception at the 20 yard line of BYU by Uona Kaveinga.byupostrileynelson

BYU’s Riley Nelson then exposed the WSU secondary by putting together a 10 play 80 yard drive where he went 4-5 that ended with confusion in WSU’s secondary which enabled a wide open 7 yard touchdown pass to Skyler Ridley to give BYU a 7-0 lead to end the first quarter.

BYU didn’t stop there, they put together 3 more scoring drives in the first half that showed the youth in the cougars defense.   While WSU struggled to get in the end zone and move the ball in the first half, WSU kicker Riley Furney was able to get the cougars on the board with 2 field goals in the as BYU went into the locker room with a 24-6 lead.

It was more of the same for the cougars in the second half.  Jeff Tuel had time to throw, but the experienced BYU secondary had close coverage on WSU’s receivers all night.  WSU standout receiver Marquess Wilson had four catches for 61 yards not including two long passes that were called back due to holding calls.  After an incredible 2011 season, Wilson showed his frustration through body language, which seemed to reflect the night for the Cougs.

Quarterback Jeff Tuel, who found himself scrambling out of the pocket many times due to the tight coverage, finished 30 for 45 with 229 yards and 2 interceptions.  There were numerous times Tuel was in the red zone but wasn’t able to get the ball over the goal line.

byupost3Although it was a tough start to the season, the Cougs have a lot of things to take from this game.  It has been years since a quarterback in the crimson and grey has had the amount of time in the pocket that Tuel had.  The downside to that is that this was the first time Tuel was able to work with the new offense in game time situations.  The first drive that took up over 11 minutes looked very impressive, and showed the potential of the famed “Air Raid” offense.  WSU has three weaker opponents in Eastern Washington, Colorado, and UNLV coming up the next three weeks.  This will give both the offense and defense time to work out their kinks and smooth things out before they start Pac-12 play.  WSU’s rushing game which combined for negative 5 yards against BYU will have time to get on track and complement the passing game. 

Please check out washingtonsportsnetwork.com next Thursday as we will have the preview for the Cougs next home game on September 8th against the Eastern Washington Eagles.

WSU vs. BYU box score on espn.com:

http://scores.espn.go.com/ncf/boxscore?gameId=322430252

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UW Rewind

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Game 1 Review

The first game for the Huskies is over and I have had plenty of time to listen and read people’s thoughts about the game. The funniest thing to me is that people are panicking about Washington’s first game.

Of course it’s not going to pretty it’s the first game, heck last season it took a last minute interception by Desmond Trufant to beat Eastern Washington University. Than in the last game of the year the Huskies scored 56 points against Baylor and racked up 620 yards of offense. As games progress the Huskies offense will get even better and they showed flashes of it in the first quarter against San Diego St. scoring very easy and getting a 14-0 lead thanks to a touchdown run by Bishop Sankey and a touchdown pass from Price to Kasen Williams. Then the offense sputtered for the rest of the game mostly because they shot themselves in the foot with penalties, but the good news was the defense actually looked good.

The defense forced three fumbles which two of them they recovered and scored on one of them with a 44-yard scoop and run. The other turnover they forced was an interception by Tre Watson the transfer from Central Washington University. Don’t get me wrong the offense did rack up 328 yards nothing like they did against Baylor but it wasn’t like they didn’t move the ball down the field. I thought the team probably deserved a B- it wasn’t there best game but it wasn’t like they ever weren’t in control to win the game either.

The Huskies next game is the game is that everyone will be paying attention to though. It’s against the LSU Tigers in Baton Rouge. With three days until the Huskies go down to Baton Rouge to face the Tigers coach Steve Sarkisian pulled out all the tricks when he brought a tiger to practice to surprise his players. You may ask why did he do that? Well I tell you why; because down in Baton Rouge the Tigers have a live tiger mascot “Mike the Tiger” outside the visitors tunnel and he wanted his team to be ready for everything LSU has to throw at them.

A couple things that the Huskies do have in their favor is LSU coach Les Miles said that LT Chris Faulk has an injury and sounds like he's out for the UW game. Another blow for LSU is the “Honey Badger” Tyrann Mathieu the kid who was a runner up in the Heisman Race last season is gone for breaking team rules. The problem with that is LSU is full of five star guys to replace those players not playing. Keith Price will test the young secondary Saturday a lot by throwing their way. One problem Price will face is having to stay in the pocket to throw and not having to scramble a lot because the Husky offensive line isn’t able to hold off the several All American defensive lineman the Tigers have. There are some things falling in the Huskies favor but it’s still LSU’s game to loose and though I think the Huskies will give them a heck of a game I still think LSU will win the game. I hope I’m wrong about the LSU win though.

Here is a link to a video of the tiger the from the other day at Washington’s practice.

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Cougs Head to Desert

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Cougs Head to the Strip

The Cougs take their show on the road for a Friday night matchup with the UNLV Runnin’ Rebels on ESPN at 6pm.  This is their second national ESPN game in 3 weeks and WSU is looking to improve to 2-1.  Sam Boyd Stadium will be the site and the Runnin’ Rebels  trying to get their 1st win of the season after losing an opening week triple overtime thriller against Big Ten opponent Minnesota, and a disappointing loss last week against FCS team Northern Arizona.Nick Sherry

This is another game, the Cougs should win, but until we see some consistency on both sides of the ball, it is hard to look past any game.   The Cougars are 11.5 point favorites in this one, but we all know what happens when we get over confident, something like what happen last Saturday versus Eastern.

UNLV is using a freshman quarterback in Nick Sherry who has been less than impressive, completing only  50% of his passes, and 355 yards over 2 games.  In the Minnesota game, which would be more comparable to the Cougs, he threw for only 116 yards, with 3 interceptions and 1 TD.

tim cornettThe Rebels running game is what the Cougs need to focus on this week.  Junior Tim Cornett has averaged 5.4 yards a carry with 268 yards and 3 TD’s.  The Cougars defense is averaging nearly 100 yards per game against the run this season.  The problem area for the Cougs has been the pass defense, giving up over 300 yards in each of the first two games.  The Cougs young secondary needs to make some changes.  They only giving up 90 yards on the ground versus Eastern, but  gave up 379 passing yards against the Eagles, including a 93 yard touchdown pass.   Because of UNLV is bringing in a freshman quarterback who hasn’t shown much yet, I think this is a game the Cougs should be able to excel in their secondary going into conference play next week.

UNLV played at Martin Stadium last year and got dismantled 59-7 and were held to 158 yards of total offense.  This is a Rebel team that is playing at Sam Boyd stadium in front of their own crowd, so they won’t put up those kind of numbers, but the Cougs should be able to control the game offensively and ultimately come out with the win. 

Jeff Tuel, who went out last Saturday late in the third with a knee injury may not play this week.  Leach originally said on Saturday that he was fine, but Tuel didn’t take any snaps in Monday's practice.  Leach won’t comment on the quarterback situation but has said in the that he would play a quarterback after not taking many snaps the prior week.

Cougars safety Deone Bucannon will be suspended for the first half because of a brutal late hit he laid on Eastern Wider Receiver Greg Herd.  For a replay of the hit, click the link below.

http://www.cougcenter.com/2012/9/11/3317184/deone-bucannon-suspended-wsu-cougars-football-unlv

Coug fans remember, this is still a team that went 4-8 last year including a down to the wire win versus Arizona State.  There were such high expectations coming into this season because of Mike Leach and the flashes of brilliance that they showed last season, but it’s still the Cougs.  I too in the back of my mind was hoping for 8-10 wins given Leach’s track record, but that is really unrealistic.  We as cougar fans want to get back to the Rosebowl and Holiday Bowl seasons of a decade ago, but it’s just going to take some time.  A reasonable expectation for the Cougs would be to go 6-6.  The Cougs have a winnable game Friday against UNLV, and another one next week against 0-2 Colorado, so potentially 3 wins after next week.  The more the year goes on, the more time this offense will have time to jell, and the defense to adjust so they can be more effective.  The Cougs will have some good games this season and can hopefully pull in a bowl game, which is a huge improvement over the past 8 seasons.

The Cougs will be home against the Colorado Buffaloes next week before traveling to Century Link field to face the Ducks.

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Isiah Myers - Spotlight

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Isiah Myersmyers spotlight

#88 is sure to be a staple in the WSU offense for years to come, here is an in depth look at Isiah Myers.

myers4Isiah Myers has jumped on the scene as a legitimate wide receiver threat in the Pac-12 conference. During his freshman season last year, Isiah had 7 catches for 76 yards.  Isiah has upped the anti this year and thrived as a go to receiver for Connor Halliday and Jeff Tuel.  Only a sophomore, but currently 11th in the Pac-12 conference in receiving yards ahead of Huskies top receiver Kasen Williams. 

Isiah has broke on the scene this season averaging over 50 yards receiving and 5 catches a game.  Isiah’s biggest performance was last weekend against California, where he had 8 grabs for 108 yards.  From a year ago, Isiah has already exceeded expectations, and in a passing offense that thrives on receivers making plays, he is sure to be one of the elite receivers in the nation for years to come.  When he is on his game, he is unstoppable.myers 5

Isiah said that he changed his mindset coming into this season, because he knew he wouldn’t be backing up one of the greatest Cougar receivers of all time in Jarred Karstetter again.  He worked with his step father Lo Wood over the summer along with Ha’Sean Clinton-Dix from the Alabama Crimson Tide, and  LaQuentin Smith from the University of Pittsburgh. 

Isiah went to Olympia High School in Orlando, Florida (VIDEO) where he was ranked number 32 on The Orlando Sentinal’s Central Florida’s Super 60 list.

Some side notes about Isiah Myers-

Favorite Food- French Fries

Favorite Restaurant- Mom’s Kitchen in Orlando, Fl

Favorite Video Game- Call of Duty

Favorite Movie- We Bought a Zoo/End of Watch

Tv Show-The Walking Dead

Favorite Artist/Group- Rick Ross/2 Chainz

Favorite Candy- Sour Patch Kids

Hobby Outside of Football- Hanging with friends/ Relaxing at home

Embarrassing Moment- Walking to class in the winter and slipping on the ice.

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Moral Victory?

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Cougar Effort Praised in 44-36 Loss to UCLAeffort given loss to ucla

After a wacky week of off field newx, Connor Halliday replaced an injured Jeff Tuel late in the first, and put together a remarkable 2nd half performance with 330 yards on 26-43 passing and 5 touchdowns.  Unfortunately for the Cougs, the 23 point 2nd half deficit was too much for them to overcome, as they fall short on Saturday 44-36.

The Cougs had a busy week with the recent Marquess Wilson drama.  For those who aren’t aware of the complete story, star receiver Marquess Wilson was suspended for a week because he was 20 minutes late to a team training by coach Mike Leach.  Marquess then took upon himself to quit the team after being a solid receiver for the Cougs the past three seasons and eclipsing the receiving yards record for the Cougs earlier this season.  Marquess then sent a letter to the media accusing Leach of physical verbal abuse. When asked if he could deny accusations of physical abuse, Leach replied, “Yes I can, next question, and if you expect to ask another one, you won’t keep walking down that path.”  Leach refused to talk about players that weren’t on the team anymore. ucla1

The Cougs had to find other receivers to pick up the hole that Marquess left and the other cougar star wide out Isiah Myers who sat out with a concussion Kennewick High Schools redshirt freshman Drew Loftus who caught his first pass as a Coug for 37 yards was among 8 Cougars with a catch.  Freshman Dominic Williams who has quickly rose to the top of the depth chart had 7 catches for 108 yards and 2 TD’s.   Sophomore Bobby Ratliff also added 5 receptions for 123 yards.

The Cougs biggest downfall was the four blocked kicks that the line let by in the first half.  The Cougs first drive which should have ended in an easy three points, saw the kick blocked and taken back 68 yards by UCLA’s Roosevelt Davis to give UCLA the early 7-0 lead.  When asked about how they lost when they outgained and outplayed UCLA, coach Leach eluded to the 4 blocked kicks.  The Cougs were down 30-7 at half and mounted a resilient comeback, but were unable to get an onside kick in the final minute to have a chance to tie it. 

The Cougs head to the desert next week to face a beatable Arizona State team before facing the Huskies in the Apple Cup on Black Friday.

Coach Leach Postgame Interview

Connor Halliday Postgame Interview

Cyrus Coen Postgame Interview

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