After losing star tackle Joe Dahl to graduation last year there was speculation that WSU’s offensive line would take a step backward this year. Instead it has continued its year by year improvement under coach Clay McGuire. Left tackle Andre Dillard and Guard Cody O’Connell have been the surprise stars of the line, consistently showing up in weekly national rankings by Pro Football Focus. With the improvement shown by these two combined with mainstay returnees Cole Madison, Riley Sorenson and Eduardo Middleton, the line has become a force to be reckoned with.
Saturday’s 42-10 win over Stanford may have the line’s apex. The Cougars took it to a physical Stanford defense and dominated just as they had the week before against a lesser Oregon defense. Overall for the season, the running game is averaging 5 yards a carry and the pass blocking stats are really impressive as the Cougars rank 11th nationally in pass blocking efficiency according to PFF.
The national media is beginning to take notice. The unit made the mid-season honor roll for the Joe Moore award which honors the best O-Line unit in country. This award is named after the late Joe Moore, one of the great offensive line coaches in college football history who coached at Notre Dame and Pitt. No group of players works more as a unit than the offensive line so this was a great idea to honor them that way. WSU joined 16 other teams on the honor roll and will wait and see if they are named as finalists in November.
We are pleased to announce our Midseason Honor Roll, congrats to these 17 teams. https://t.co/W2xya3VEXY— The Joe Moore Award (@JoeMooreAward) October 12, 2016
Clay McGuire has done a great job building this line and I think we will be treated to some excellent play in the years to come. Nothing better than watching a team with a great offensive line, as Seattle Seahawk fans will remember from the Mike Holmgren era. It makes the offense run like a smooth machine. Can’t wait to see how they fare against UCLA on Saturday.
Who would WSU Cougars coach Mike Leach take on a long road trip? Not UW’s Chris Petersen | The Seattle Times
ESPN put together an entertaining feature where they asked a number of college football coaches to name three passengers they would want to go on a road trip with. WSU's Mike Leach stole the 1-minute show.
WSU Athletic Director says linebacker Logan Tago will be allowed to practice, but can’t play | The Seattle Times
Logan Tago will be allowed to practice with the team but will not play until his legal case has been concluded
WSU Cougars links: David Shaw says WSU’s Luke Falk is a future NFL QB | The Seattle Times
WSU QB Luke Falk has all the tools to play in the NFL, says Stanford coach David Shaw, who coached quarterbacks in the NFL before he made the jump to the college ranks
Pac-12 Notebook: Washington gets high marks on midseason report card | The Seattle Times
We take a look at the highlights and low lights during the first half of the Pac-12 football season.
WSU football chat (transcript) | The Spokesman-Review
Everything said during Wednesday's WSU football chat
Mike Leach is not worried about the weather | The Spokesman-Review
Rain on Saturday won't dampen Mike Leach's mood.
Catching up to Cody O'Connell | The Spokesman-Review
Offensive line coach Clay McGuire talks about why Cody O'Connell keeps winning the team's "Bone Award."
Week 7 in the Pac-12: What to watch for - Pac-12 Blog- ESPN
While Washington, Cal and Oregon are on byes (and will spend them differently), we get another exciting-if-history-serves installment of Arizona-USC.