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HCA: Mike Leach and the Pac-12 coaches phone in together for teleconferences

With the NFL draft and spring practices behind us, the coaches get asked a few questions in a teleconference

Boise State v Washington State Photo by William Mancebo/Getty Images

Mike Leach was in mid-season form on Monday when the Pac-12 hosted their teleconference that included a mix of new and old coaches in the conference. Five new schools will start their 2018 campaign with a new head coach on the sidelines. But Washington State can always count on their coach when it comes to interviews

It didn’t take long for Leach to settle in as the first reporter asked him questions regarding the new rule changes in college football that allow a returner to signal fair catch inside the 25 and start the drive on the 25 yard line. When the reporter asked him why he didn’t like the new rule Leach responded with a question of his own “Well what do you like about it?”

Leach has never been the kind of coach to hold back when it comes to what he thinks. It has been known that he is not a fan of this rule and said on Monday that “I don’t think its particularly a good rule. We keep monkeying with the rule book and what do we have to show for it? really not very much.”

Leach was then asked about his thoughts on Hercules Mata’afa going undrafted and what position he sees him playing in the NFL. While Mata’afa is a smaller defensive end (6’1”, 254-pounds - the third smallest end out of the top 27 according to Leach says he believes that the best position for him is an interior lineman and that he believes he will have a good career in the NFL if he can find a team that he fits well with.

With a year of eligibility remaining there was a lot of speculation that he should have stayed his senior year. However, with all of the coaching changes that happened with the Cougars it is not surprising that he decided to move on to the next level. Leach disagrees with that and says that he should have stayed in Pullman for his final year. He recognizes that his size wouldn’t have changed and that he would still have the same problem next year, but he would have been able to “rub everybody’s nose in the fact that ‘yeah I am that good.”

Heading into this next year one of the biggest questions is the quarterback situation. A reporter out of Utah asked Leach whether or not Freshman Camm Cooper who enrolled early to get a jump start on the offense will jump right into the competition or will take a year to develop for Pac-12 competition. After having watched him in the spring, Leach says they will evaluate him again in the fall and says that “if he’s polished up enough to play we’ll play him.”


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