The ESPN Pac-12 blog is running a most important player series and Kevin Gemmell got to Washington State on Friday.
Gemmell went with safety Deone Bucannon, which if you've seen WSU's safeties play recently, you know that is a solid pick. While Bucannon has been a mainstay in the Cougar secondary, WSU has struggled to find anyone else capable of playing in the back end. Depth remains a serious issue and losing Bucannon would be a major blow.
It's important to note that quarterbacks were excluded from the Pac-12 blog's series, but that doesn't mean Bucannon is the only choice. You could make a solid case for a few players, but my pick would be middle linebacker Darryl Monroe.
Not only is Monroe one of the best players on WSU's roster, he's also one of the vocal leaders of the defense. While Jared Byers plays as hard as you could want, he's also a former walk-on who only shifted to defense last season. The WSU defense was noticeably worse without Monroe on the field last season and if he continues to develop, that gap may widen this season.
Who would you pick as the most important player?
Remember when Daniel Jenkins transferred to WSU from Arizona for his senior season? Well, that apparently lasted a few months as Jenkins is headed back to Arizona. Jenkins would have been a nice addition and his departure could leave WSU thin in the backfield. Depending on Teondray Caldwell's situation, WSU could be relying on a true freshman or two this season.
While the Arizona Daily Star said Jenkins spent a few months in Pullman the Tuscon Citizen said he was planning on enrolling in the summer. Jenkins wasn't listed on WSU's spring roster so while he won't be coming to Pullman, it's not as if he's been working out with the team and had access to the playbook.
Running back Daniel Jenkins won’t transfer, returns to the Arizona Wildcats - AG's Wildcat Report
Arizona running back Daniel Jenkins, who was expected to enroll this summer at Washington State as a graduate transfer, will instead rejoin the Wildcats for his senior season.
Badgers football: Alvarez eyes neutral-site series with LSU : Sports
The Badgers previously had Washington State on its 2014 non-conference schedule. That game appears to be in limbo as the potential deal with LSU is being discussed.
Arizona Wildcats football: Rodriguez announces RB Jenkins back with program
Arizona Wildcats coach Rich Rodriguez announced tonight that running back Daniel Jenkins has rejoined the program after a short-lived transfer to Washington State.
WSU's Caldwell arrested on May 7 - SportsLink - Spokesman.com - May 16, 2013
Washington State running back Teondray Caldwell was arrested on May 7 on suspicion of assault and burglary stemming from an April 28 incident at a Pullman residence.
The baseball team lost to Washington on Friday in the first game of a four-game series.
Cougars Edged by Huskies - The Washington State University Official Athletic Site
PASCO, Wash. - Washington took advantage of two eighth-inning errors by Washington State to score a pair of runs in a 4-3 victory in Pac-12 Conference baseball, Friday night at Gesa Stadium.