When WSU's 2015 recruiting class was taking shape, it looked to possibly be the most-decorated class in school history. Then bad things started happening. On January 26, Dillon Faamatau decommitted and ended up signing with Arizona State. He was followed on the decommitment train by Willie Sykes (Arkansas), Dahu Green (Oklahoma), Kyahva Tezino (San Diego St.), Deontay Burnett (USC) and Jonah Moi (Oregon).
As Jeff Nusser pointed out in his class recap, nearly every one of those commits was recruited by Dennis Simmons, who was rumored to be on his way to Oklahoma. That rumor surfaced on January 29. Within a week, those guys (all of whom had other Pac-12 and/or Power Five offers) were gone. By the time the smoke cleared, WSU's class ranking had gone from potential Top 25 to the mid-40s and below.
While decommitments are a part of recruiting, the perception is that WSU tends to be hurt late in the game more than many. Some recruits jump on WSU's offer and commit, while keeping their eyes out for other offers from better programs. Combine that with a player's primary recruiter headed toward the exit, and you have the potential for the type last-minute damage that WSU suffered in February.
All of that is background for some potentially good news that surfaced this week. According the the AP, an early signing period could become a reality when the Collegiate Commissioners Association meets this week.
Mike Leach was a vocal opponent of the early signing period for a long time, but has since come around to the idea. I get the feeling that this year's class had a big impact on his opinion. Allowing high school players to sign early wouldn't necessarily be a panacea to schools like WSU. Schools like USC and Oregon could possibly sign their biggest targets in December, figure out their remaining gaps, and then go after WSU commits who haven't signed their LOI.
While the latter possibility exists, I am in favor of the December signing period, especially since the CCA intends to review the policy after two years. That should allow everyone to get a read on whether it evens the playing field a bit, or simply results in the rich getting richer. As Cougar fans, we're aware that WSU is not part of the "rich." While I think a December window would not have kept every lost recruit in the fold, largely because some of those players committed afterward, it could have at least ensured that WSU secured a couple of them. What do you think?
Pac-12 defenses replacing many top tacklers - Pac-12 Blog - ESPN
Phil Steele does a ton of research, and offers great insight most of the time. He is also really good at cherry-picking stats to support his narrative, as he did with ASU here.
Mike Leach On Marcus Mariota and Spread Offense | 102.5 The Game & 94.9 Game 2
Check out our entire interview with Coach Mike Leach below. We cover it all from the spread offense, SEC hype and deep sea fishing in Key West.
The Furness Show | iHeartRadio
Donnie Marbut says we're going to Omaha in 2017. If so, I look forward to my first trip to Nebraska since 2003.
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Sand Volleyball at WSU? Why not! A giant budget deficit is probably 'why not,' but still.
Track and Field
T&F Concludes Record Season at NCAA Championships - Washington State University Official Athletic Site
Audrey Ketcham tied for 21st in the women’s high jump Saturday at the NCAA DI Track & Field Championships at Oregon’s Hayward Field as the Washington State University Track & Field program closed a collegiate competition year with 23 new entries in the school’s all-time records.
Why Big Beer is Struggling in the Age of Craft Beer
MillerCoors, the joint venture between SABMiller and Molson Coors Brewing, is facing a class-action lawsuit from craft beer enthusiasts for having the audacity to imply that Blue Moon—one of the fastest-growing beer brands in America—was a craft beer.
Here’s what people did before they could Google things - Quartz
Before there was Google, there were librarians.
SEAL Team 6: A Secret History of Quiet Killings and Blurred Lines - NYTimes.com
I've worked with these guys many times, and while they can be a giant pain-in-the-backside, they are the best at what they do.