Good morning, Cougar fans. For the third time in four seasons, the WSU Men's Basketball team took a two-game road swing through Utah and Colorado. For the third time in four seasons, the Cougars left without a win. Although Ernie Kent's team had cooled off a bit after a stupefying 3-1 start to conference play, things seemed to be going WSU's way even before the game started. Colorado had lost four straight, including a heart-breaker to Washington Thursday. They were without two starters, Xavier Johnson and Josh Scott, who contribute 39 percent of the team's scoring and 35 percent of the rebounding.
Colorado also began the game without leading scorer Askia Booker. Booker was not in the starting lineup because, as Jeff noted in the recap, he was late to a team meeting. Sources are unable to confirm whether he was late due to a forgotten iPod. Tad Boyle really drove his emphasis on punctuality home by playing Booker a team-leading 30 minutes, in which he scored 21 points. Lesson learned there coach!
As for WSU, the outcome of the trip was not unexpected, but the manner in which the game played out Saturday is still a bit disappointing. The Cougs were playing a team missing significant contributors, and who had just suffered a last-second defeat. Despite all that, this game was never competitive. A big reason for that seems to be a lack of identity on defense. We have writers far, far more knowledgeable that I am about basketball, but WSU's strategy Saturday seemed to be "give Colorado wide open shots and hope they miss." Granted, I only saw a small portion of the game, but given the fact that Colorado did whatever they wanted offensively, it's clear that unless WSU catches fire on offense, there will be many more games like this to come.
On the bright side, I don't think any of us thought this team would have three wins at this point in Pac-12 play, so things still aren't that bad in the big picture. However, if they're going to compete throughout the rest of the season, they cannot afford sub par games from both DaVonte Lacy and Josh Hawkinson, and they need to figure something out on the defensive end. One fun fact about the game: One of the officials was Bill Vinovich. Mr. Vinovich won't be officiating any basketball games next weekend, as he will be in Arizona calling his first Super Bowl.
In brighter news, Director of Football Operations Dave Emerick got some national recognition as being one of the best in the nation. Mike Leach calls him the Chief of Staff. If that position is anything like a Chief of Staff in the Air Force, Emerick has one of the most thankless jobs anywhere. The Chief of Staff basically deals with all of the headaches that the coach doesn't have the time or energy to take care of. If there's one guy that knows everything that's going on in the organization, it's Emerick. It's great to see that he is being recognized as one of the best.
Buffaloes stomp all over Cougars - Spokesman.com - Jan. 25, 2015
With their top three scorers watching from the bench, the Buffaloes immediately took control and never relinquished it in a 90-58 dismantling of WSU.
Colorado roughs up Washington State men, 90-58 | Cougar Basketball | The Seattle Times
Up by 16 at the break, the Buffaloes opened the second half with an 11-5 burst capped by a three-pointer by Hopkins to stretch their lead to 58-36.
CU men's basketball: Buffs end skid in big way against Cougars - Boulder Daily Camera
As a team, the Buffs had 25 assists, the most in the five-year Boyle era. They also out-rebounded the Cougars (9-10, 3-4) by a 44-28 margin. As a team, the Buffs made 54.8 percent of their shots, while holding Washington State to 38.7 percent.
Cougars Host Basketball Reunion, Face Colorado Sunday - Washington State University Official Athletic Site
Washington State (12-6, 3-4) will wrap up the weekend hosting the University of Colorado (9-9, 2-5) Sunday at 1 p.m. on the Pac-12 Networks.
Vince Mayle took part in the Senior Bowl (approximately 90 minutes from the Kendall estate) Saturday, catching a couple passes. The game itself is actually the least-important part of Senior Bowl week. The three practices are what NFL scouts and personnel people really care about. Mayle drew mixed reviews, though I tend to trust Mike Mayock's evaluation over just about anyone else.
Press Releases : News : Senior Bowl
Washington State WR Vince Mayle set the single season school record in receptions and receiving yards. He talked one-on-one with the Reese's Senior Bowl.
Mayock: Duke's Jamison Crowder a standout at Senior Bowl - NFL.com
Mayock is high on Washington State's Vince Mayle (6-2, 219). He set a school record with 106 receptions in the Cougars' pass-happy attack, and Mayock said Mayle has "better movement skills than I expected."
Draft analyst discusses prospects from third day of Senior Bowl | The Kansas City Star The Kansas City Star
Perez: “In terms of creating separation, he seemed a little tight in the hips, rounding off his routes, he looked a little underwhelmed. He didn’t excite me as much as I was hoping he would.”
Connor Halliday (Audio)
Softy is joined by QB Connor Halliday who describes what it was like to miss the Apple Cup and an update on his rehabilitation from his injury.
Anheuser-Busch Buys Seattle-Based Elysian Brewing - WSJ
OH MY GOD WHAT A BUNCH OF SELLOUTS! - People who have never been in the same position.
Mean Girls in the Retirement Home - NYTimes.com
More evidence that tigers rarely change their stripes. I'm willing to bet that the jerks I went to high school with are still that way, and will be in 30 years.