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HCA: WSU men and women hit the court Wednesday night

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This morning, football takes center stage with early signing day. But once that wraps up, you can see both the Cougar men’s and women’s basketball teams in action.

NCAA Basketball: Oregon State at Washington State James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

It’s early signing day in college football (make sure to check out our signing day coverage here) but it’s also gameday for both Washington State basketball teams. The Cougar men and Cougar women will hit the court later today for a pair of games.

Let’s start with the men, who will take on SIU Edwardsville in a Las Vegas Classic campus game. The Cougs rebounded from an embarrassing loss to Montana State with a somewhat impressive performance with a 94-80 win over a good Rider team. KenPom.com had the Cougs as a slight underdog, but Robert Franks and Marvin Cannon came through to power Washington State to the win.

Tonight, they’ll return to a practically empty Beasley Coliseum over winter break to face a team they should be easily in SIUE. The other Cougars are 2-6 this season and are ranked 331st (out of 353 teams) by KenPom. The only two wins came against NAIA Harris-Stowe and Incarnate Word (a team ranked 11 spots lower than SIUE in the KenPom rankings). SIUE is led by a trio of players averaging more than 13 points per game. David McFarland (13.8), Tyresse Williford (13.6) and Brandon Jackson (13.0) all lead the way as the only players averaging double digits in the point column.

The game will be the last for Washington State before they head to Sin City to play in the Las Vegas Classic Tournament. They’ll play San Diego on Saturday in the Orleans Arena before taking on either Drake or New Mexico State on Sunday. The Cougs already played NMSU earlier this season, falling to the Aggies 69-63 in Las Cruces. The game tonight can be seen on the Pac-12 Network, while both games from Vegas will be seen on FS1.

As for the Washington State women, the traveled to Vegas a little earlier than their counterparts. The WSU women will start play in the Duel in the Desert tournament from the Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas today at 2:30 against Kansas.

In their last game, Washington State brought a 3-game win streak into Spokane to take on their rivals from Gonzaga, but they were blown out by the 24th ranked Zags 76-53. Tonight, WSU is looking to get back to .500 with a 5-5 record, but it’s going to be tough against the 7-1 Jayhawks. Kansas started the year on a 6-game win streak, but lost on December 5th on the road at Nebraska 58-52. That’s a good omen for Washington State, as the Cougs topped that Husker team at home in double overtime earlier this season for their first win of the year.

Tip off set for 2:30 this afternoon with a second matchup on tap against either Wichita State or Northwestern tomorrow. If you’re in the mood to spend some money on a subscription, you can watch the games on FloHoops.com.

Cougars Close Nonconference In Vegas - Washington State University Athletics
WSU plays a pair at the Duel In The Desert beginning Wednesday.

Cougars Conclude Play in Pullman for the Calendar Year - Washington State University Athletics
WSU hosts SIUE Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. at Beasley Coliseum.

Football

Washington State could ink as many as 20 players – or more – when early signing period opens | The Spokesman-Review
WSU’s 2019 class is expected to be in the low 20s, which should place the Cougars at the top of the Pac-12. WSU and Cal each had 21 oral commitments as of Tuesday night, giving the Cougars and Golden Bears a slight edge on Arizona State, Oregon and UW, who each have 20 pledges. Stanford and Arizona were next with 19 and 17, respectively.

Live updates: Washington State introduces first wave of signees as NCAA’s early period begins | The Spokesman-Review
Follow along with our live thread as the letters of intent continue to roll in. Below, you’ll find short bios of each player to sign with the Cougars and accompanying Hudl highlight videos.