Celebrating Cougar alumni, Cougar moms, and Cougars in the NFL

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Today is a day to celebrate mothers, new graduates, and two more Cougars who get to pursue their NFL dreams.

Happy Mother's Day to Cougs and Coug moms everywhere. We'll cover the NFL opportunity for two more Cougars, Andrew Furney and John Fullington, in the links section. Hopefully there are not a lot of you who, upon reading this, have to immediately budget time for a last-second gas station stop on the way to mom's house to buy her an air freshener and some Slim Jims. I've always thought the funniest part about this day is the fact that many people honor their mom/wife by gathering for large meals. Those meals are in all likelihood prepared by moms and wives. If I were ever to cater such a celebration, everyone would be eating cereal and Chinese leftovers, so it's probably best left to the experts.

This is also the weekend when our beloved school officially produces thousands of new alumni. The esteemed Messrs. Preston and Collier covered two angles with great pieces, so I'll try to cover it from a different one. Being such a momentous weekend in our favorite corner of the world, there will undoubtedly be thousands of dollars worth of presents passed around. As we all know, the closest thing to legal extortion is the price of flowers. It's easy to be $75-100 in the hole before you even know what happened. The last thing mom needs is another bouquet of flowers that'll wilt by Wednesday. I'm also pretty sure that you new grads could survive without that new WSU-embossed pen and pencil set.

This is where the Cougar Athletic Fund provides a great opportunity. Instead of spending money on flowers, get mom a CAF membership. You can do so for just $50 (often cheaper than decent flowers) and you'll be helping out student-athletes. I guarantee that mom will be happy to get such a gift. New alums, are you trying to think of a way to give back to the school that produced so many great memories? I give you the same solution. It doesn't have to be the CAF (though WSU really needs help in that area), but the best way to give back to the place that gave  you so much is by helping out the current students and student-athletes. You'll be glad you did. I'll leave the best piece of advice to Thornton Melon.

DISCLAIMER: I'm about to get a little personal, so if you want to stop reading here, I will not be offended. Not that I'd know whether you stopped reading, but still.

I mentioned earlier that Sunday is Mother's Day. What most of you likely don't know is that Friday was Military Spouse Appreciation Day. Here's a little insight into what that life is like. It is an often thankless job that goes unnoticed. While the military member is in some faraway land, the spouse is left home to assume duties of wife, husband, and in most cases, both parents. It is filled with stress, loneliness, and most of all, worry. Worry that the last goodbye kiss could be the final one they will ever share. Worry that it will be left to him or her to explain to young children why mom or dad won't ever be coming home.

Guys (I say "guys" since this site is predominantly visited my men), imagine your wife leaving for a "girls" weekend, and not coming back for 130 days. I don't know about you, but I'd be looking for the nearest psychiatrist after about a week. Military spouses deal with this, and absences of a year or more, on a regular basis. A few calculations conservatively estimate that, by the time my wife and I celebrate our 10th anniversary (for which we won't be together), she will have spent over 950 days with a deployed husband. To put that into better context, she will have been playing the role of single wife and mom for 27 percent of our marriage.

Sunday marks the third Mother's Day in the last four which my wife will spend without her husband. There have been multiple missed anniversaries, birthdays, and Christmases. Add to that the near-constant state of flux, often resulting in picking up and moving across the country just as they're settling to their new home and life. If you've never dealt with government-contracted movers, consider yourself lucky.

Through it all, somehow my wife and many others manage to get everything done without complaint. We have two sons, ages five and two. Every week it falls to her to pick up one kid from daycare, drive 40 minutes through awful traffic to pick up my older son at school, and then hustle back to the athletic complex for his tee-ball pratice. After that, it's time to go home, cook dinner, help with homework, bathe the kids, and get them to bed. Rinse and repeat (with swimming lessons or something else replacing tee-ball) every week for 4.5 months. I'll never know how she does it, and I can never do enough to pay her back. She is my hero.

NFL Draft

Mike Leach and Deone Bucannon Fox Sports 910 Phoenix
Mike Leach joined Arizona sports radio to praise Deone Bucannon, then Deone himself made an appearance.

John Fullington signs with Green Bay - SportsLink - Spokesman.com - May 10, 2014
John Fullington has come a long way in just a year. It seems like he was flagged about 1,000 times in 2012. He bounced back nicely, and now he has a shot to make it in the NFL.

Kicker Andrew Furney tweets he'll attend Seahawks mini camp - SportsLink - Spokesman.com - May 10, 2014
Chip on your shoulder, Mr. Furney? You'll fit right in with the Seahawks. Just don't confuse that chip on your shoulder with a bag of corn chips.

Football

Pac-12 mailbag - ESPN
Mike Leach and the Cougs are surging, no doubt, with two of five commitments ranked in the ESPN 300. That's a function of folks buying into the future under Leach, as well as shiny new facilities on campus.

Video: Washington State Cougars coach Mike Leach - ESPN
A slimmed-down Mike Leach joined Ted Miller at the Pac-12 meetings. It's clear that his strategy of conducting interviews while walking to work is paying off. I won't mention the fact that my brother nearly ran him over during one of those walks.

Video: Washington State Cougars athletic director Bill Moos - ESPN
Bill Moos talked with Ted Miller at the Pac-12 meetings. Bill seems to pull off horizontal stripes better than I could, but I still question the wardrobe decision.

Coaches make millions, but second chances in short supply - CBSSports.com
Second chances don't always come easily. Mike Leach, Rich Rodriguez and Charlie Weis know. Charlie Weis shouldn't know, but here we are.

2014 College football rankings: Updated S&P+ projections - Football Study Hall
The good news: The Cougs have moved up five spots since Bill C. did his last set of projections. The bad news: They're still not rated very high, and they're only two spots ahead of Nevada.

Baseball

Cougar Pitching Too Much for Utes - Washington State University Official Athletic Site
The Cougar baseball team bounced back from a tough Friday loss to take the second game of the three-gamer with Utah. The rubber match is Sunday at noon.

Non-Sports

The 12 Commandments Of Bar Etiquette
This dovetails, kind of, with Preston's masterpiece of a graduation address last week. Graduates, you're about to enter the world of the working man. Please follow these rules accordingly, and check your "bro" personality at the door.

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