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The Cougars went to Cal. The Cougars were bad. The Cougars lost.

Stop me if you’ve heard this before.

Washington State v California Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Good morning. If you’re like me, well, first off I’m sorry. Second, usually when you watch Cougar Football, it’s because you want to. But some of the time, you watch Cougar Football only because it’s what you’ve always done and who wants to do something that makes a person feel happy?

For the last four-plus seasons, with the exception of one annual game in November, I’ve watched the Cougars because I wanted to. It’s been a pleasant departure from much of my life as a WSU fan, where I was usually relegated to watching for the latter reason by this time of the year. Hello darkness my old friend.

Even though the season was 80% over after the UCLA collapse, the Cougs still had a chance to rectify things and have themselves a successful year. Technically, they still can - in my opinion - if they win their next two and go on to win a bowl game. But let’s be honest - is there really a good chance that they’ll do that? That they’ll win three of four games against at least three Power Five opponents when they’ve beaten precisely one this season? If you think that’s realistic, I commend you for your optimism.

In typical fashion, yours truly has been wrong about a lot of things this year. However, in a broken clock/twice per day situation:

As much as I’ve enjoyed Cougar Football over the last few years, I’m ready for this season to be over. That’s not to say I don’t want WSU to win their next two and qualify for a bowl game, because God knows they need the extra practice. But if they either don’t qualify for the postseason, or win their next two but get left off the dance card, I won’t be all that disappointed.

Why won’t I be disappointed? Well, it’ll mean that I no longer have to watch a left tackle who belongs in Division II commit a litany of penalties and totally whiff on blocks that could have resulted in a big play. I won’t have to watch a linebacker who was supposed to be one of the better players on defense, and who showed so much promise as a true freshman, get worse by the game. I won’t have to watch an allegedly elite offense (lolololol) score one goddamn touchdown when the game is still in doubt.

I won’t have to watch a complete joke of a defense surrender 33 points to an opposing offense that’s been so inept that, until Saturday, its highest point total in Pac-12 play had been 20. That awful offense had scored 41 points in its previous four games combined. Coming into the game, Cal averaged four yards per play. Against WSU, they averaged 7.1. Devon Modster came into the game averaging five yards per attempt. Against WSU, he averaged 9.6. It’s pretty hard to make a terrible offense look that competent, but damned if WSU didn’t pull it off.

Oh, and as for that “elite” offense (again lololol), the one thing - THE ONE THING - they couldn’t do was turn the ball over and allow Cal advantageous field position. They turned the ball over twice, setting up Cal with short fields twice. Cal scored touchdowns twice. WSU ran 12 more plays than Cal and had three fewer total yards. They were a combined 4-15 on 3rd-and-4th down. This included a failed trip inside the Cal 15 with a chance to take the lead in the fourth quarter. The game ended right there.

As far as the coaches, will the last person who thinks there was any sort of bump from the defensive coordinator change please turn out the lights? On the other side, the line looked completely unprepared for Cal’s blitzes. Play after play, Cal had a free runner right up the middle. And this is a staff that had two weeks to get the team ready? Imagine how bad it would’ve been if there had only been one week.

Not that it would have made a difference in the outcome, but the refs just couldn’t stand to let WSU be the only squad displaying total ineptitude.

Again, I don’t think the correct call would have been the difference between WSU winning and losing, but this officiating malpractice bullshit is getting pretty goddamn old, and it might have helped kickstart the crappy offense if they got to start 33 yards from the endzone instead of 92.

I could go on, but the last thing you probably want to do is read more about this team and this season. They are what their record says they are, and if you needed any further proof, another miserable Saturday in Berkeley provided it.


Analysis: Washington State’s season takes another unfortunate turn in 33-20 loss to California | The Spokesman-Review
The Cougars lost 33-20 to the Golden Bears at Memorial Coliseum, giving up more than 30 points to a team that hadn’t scored that many since Nov. 24, 2018.

Yet again, Washington State’s defense doomed by explosive plays | The Spokesman-Review There was Modster’s 35-yard pass to Kekoa Crawford, a 48-yard hook-up with Jordan Duncan, a 22-yard run from Brown, a 23-yard run from Trevon Clark and a 26-yard scramble from Modster that set up the game-clinching 52-yard pass play that came a few snaps later.

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