The WSU Cougars picked up their third win in a row Saturday night with a victory over the Idaho Vandals. It is the first such streak for the school since 2006, when the Cougs also started the season 3-1, also including a win over Idaho.
That also was the last time the Cougs finished a season bowl eligible -- although, sadly, there was no bowl appearance for 6-6 WSU (something that we can virtually guarantee would not have happened had Bill Moos been the athletic director at the time ... but I digress).
It might be coincidental that the time WSU was bowl eligible involved a quick start, but I don't think so; it's paramount to go at least 2-1 in the nonconference portion of the schedule, otherwise you're starting in a hole that's tough to dig out of, and if you can pick up another win that allows you some wiggle room the rest of the way ... well, your odds of getting to six wins just went up.
So here we are, with WSU needing just three more wins in its final eight games to earn a bowl appearance -- really, about as good a position as even the most optimistic fan would have hoped for. The Cougs still have three more games in Pullman against beatable teams -- Oregon State (already sold out), Arizona State (Halloween) and Utah. They have a game in Seattle against Stanford this weekend. And they travel to Cal, Oregon, Arizona and Washington.
Do you see three wins in there? Realistically, Stanford and Oregon are losses. Tucson is rarely good to us. Can WSU go 3-2 against OSU, ASU, Utah, at Cal, at UW? And if you think Washington probably should be thrown into the Stanford/Oregon bucket at the moment -- as I do -- then you're talking 3-1 against OSU/ASU/Utah/at Cal, or needing another surprise win.
Do you see it? Discuss.